October 2nd, 2005

what's that?

How many bottles of beer make a drunk?

Hi, I'm new. First question.

I did try to Google this, but all I got were a bunch of "Alcoholic scum!" and "How much oatmeal is too much in my microbrew?" websites. And I don't drink, so I don't have even the *first* clue. My question is: how many bottles of beer would it take for a girl to get drunk enough to lose her feet and several inhibitions, but to still be aware of what's going on? Somewhere right before a cartoonish staggering and the singing of "How Dry I Am." Let's say it's a microbrew beer. I don't know if that would affect the answer, but I may as well include all the details.

EDIT: Wow, I didn't realize drinking was such a science. =D No wonder I don't do it. Okay, more details. Say a girl 5'6, 125 lbs, had maybe three slices from a large pepperoni pizza with medium crust beforehand. Her disposition is fairly easygoing anyway, and she's a social drinker (i.e. at a party, free booze, yay beer!). And since it's free beer, she's grabbing them pretty quick before they run out.
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smile time

Care package question

I have a character who's a professional chef and wants to send a care package to his daughter at boarding school. What might he include other than the standard cookies? I'd rather the package not include anything that needs to be refrigerated in transit, but she can refrigerate it once it gets to the school, and can cook in a microwave. The food would only need to be in transit for a day or so.

Thanks for any suggestions.
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    Elliott Smith
illiad spoiler // kateshort

Riparian geography of Vietnam

Okay, my google-fu is just really, really weak or something. I am hoping like hell that someone here can help out.

I'm writing a story that uses as a significant event the Hai Ba Truong, the sisters who freed Vietnam from Han Chinese rule in 41 AD. They committed suicide in the Hat River.

I need to know if the Hat River has a lake on it that could be appropriately haunted by the spirits of the dead from that time, and to do that, I need to know its name. Either the name has changed since 43 AD, or else it's REALLY small. I'm not turning it up on maps, nor am I turning it up on Google, other than in reference to the Hai Ba Truong. So it's sort of like a vicious circle there, really.

I'm not sure if it's the Red River, the Mekong, or another river entirely that is still named the Hat; any help would be vastly appreciated. I suspect it COULD be the Red or the Mekong based on the articles I have turned up, but I haven't found anything that conveniently says "The Hat River's name was changed under the reign of Emperor Whosit in 1850 to the Mekong, a word that means "look at my fancy hat, you very silly foreigners"."

Private airfields

A few questions.

1) Do private airfields even exist anymore in the U.S.? (Google searches haven't really brought up much useful information on this one. My Google-fu is, shockingly enough, weak.)

2) What exactly is meant by "private"? Does it mean (as one would assume) that the owner of the property controls who gets to land and take off there? Is it basically understood that most private airfields are open to the public as long as they pay any requesite fees, etc?

3) What special regulations are the owners subject to?

Basically, I want an eccentric billionaire to own his own planes, airfield, etc. However, he doesn't like to share it with others. He also occasionally flies illegal passengers around under the government's nose - how likely is this scenario? (Bribes could certainly enter the equation, if need be.)
[discworld] the way of things

Defining Humanity, and Logical Arguments

In the story I'm working on, my characters are arguing about what makes someone human, in a world where demons, and things that can pass for human exist. There's also a definite afterlife. There's a part where they broach philosophical/social science territory, and I've made casual use of Google to fuel their arguments. I suspect I now know enough to get things really wrong. More information would be nice, but what I'm really after is if I've got the philosophical/social science bits right, and if the argument makes logical sense. Below the cut is the bare bones argument. I'd be grateful if you guys could double check that I'm on the right track. (I know this is a little outside of the community, so I asked permission from a moderator.)

So, what are the traditional arguments for defining humanity (though usually it's for separating us from animals)? What are the counter-arguments? Does the following make logical sense?

Thanks in advance.
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