August 6th, 2007

Throat trauma and dominant foot in surfing

Question the first:
Is there something (either disease or some kind of injury) that would ruin a person's singing voice, but not their speaking voice? My character speaks fine; his voice is a little raspy, but not so much that someone listening to him would wonder why his voice sounds odd...but he can't sing worth crap while his (uhh, this is where it gets a little weird) clone-brother-type-thing can sing quite well. They're essentially the same person, and have the same speaking voice, but one can't sing and the other can. Is there anything that could cause this?

I've googled throat trauma, throat injury, ruining your voice, and variations...mostly it gives me information on throat injury that ruins your speaking voice, and warns not to smoke or eat chocolate because it will ruin your singing voice.

Question the second (and third):
I should know this, and googling "dominant foot" and variations only yields results on how to use your dominant foot to find your dominant eye. -_- My gogglefu is failing hardcore this morning. Anyway: if a person is left-handed, which foot is their dominant foot?

And also: is the dominant foot the one you would use in surfing? In other words, if someone is "natural footed" and puts their left foot forward on the board, does that mean that their left foot is their dominant foot, or does/could it depend on some other factor?

...I hope this all made sense. ._.

Balance disorder

Okay, here's the situation. I want a character to have a balance disorder in which they cannot walk in a straight line, balance on one foot, etc. (meaning, if a police officer should pull them over, they would not be able to pass the drunk tests). My mother, who is an ex-nurse, says this would most likely be caused by difficulty with your inner ear or a cranial nerve.

1 - I am assuming balance disorders wouldn't affect you while sitting in a car and driving, as this doesn't seem to need balance - you are sitting and supported by the seat. Am I wrong here?

2 - If you had a balance disorder of this sort, would you be allowed to keep your license?

3 - If you did get pulled over, would they arrest you as soon as you lurched from your car? Would they ask for proof of your disability (doctor's note maybe??)

4 - How would one develop a balance disorder like this? Injury I assume.

Okay, seperate question. I've heard that while you can be breathalyzed or blood tested after being arrested, police officers prefer blood tests in case you're on drugs instead of being drunk. However, they're supposedly only allowed to give you one. Is this at all true?

{edit} I've talked to my mom and she's given me one story, but she's nuts. I've tried googling balance disorders, license, and every combination thereof. I do not know any police officers to talk to. Thankfully. This is one of those questions where I'm not sure what to google.

an insider's guide to boarding school, manhattan, and hoboken

Google and wikipedia are great and everything, but I need help on three subjects. I've done as much research as I can about boarding schools, how they work, things like that, but I still don't feel I can write convincingly enough about them. Ditty Manhattan (New York) and Hoboken (New Jersey). What I need is an insider's view of boarding school, Manhattan, and Hoboken. Things only someone who's gone to boarding school or lived in Manhattan/Hoboken would know.

Here are some of the specifics of what I want to know:

boarding school
Since I get half of my information on boarding school from books like Harry Potter, movies like Cry_Wolf, shows like Code Lyoko, the wikipedia page, and browsing various New York boarding school websites, I've got the general gist of prefects and roommates and what time you're allowed to be in your rooms or not in your rooms, etc.

What I need to know is things like what do the prefects do? Do you get to meet your roommate beforehand or do you meet them when they/you/both of you show up? What happens when you first enroll? Do you go see the principal, or is all that taken care of before classes start? Speaking of, do classes start as soon as everyone's back on campus (like the day after) or is there some kind of assembly first? If you can give me the information, or know if I'm not searching hard enough for it, please help.

manhattan and hoboken
What're some good places to eat? What're some bad ones? What parts of the city do people who live there know to avoid and just what is the hobo-to-street-corner ratio in NYC, anyway? It also seems (from reading Peeps and Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist) that Hoboken isn't a place anyone would be particularly proud to live in. Why is that? How hard is it to catch a taxi cab in New York? Where do people who aren't tourists go for fun? Include street names, please. Any slang terms common to Manhattaners/Hobokeners would be good, too. That sort of thing.

Like I said, I need an insider's view of these things/places. I'd also like to know where in Manhattan a girl who isn't rich, but has enough money for a nursemaid would live. I'd like it to be an apartment building, if possible. And, also, a little random, but also something I want to know, are you allowed to walk into a hotel (any hotel, but I'm thinking, specifically, the Hilton) and bypass the check-in desk in favor of the elevator? Or would they recognize that you don't have a room at the hotel?

Thanks for any and all help. :3