MiscMisc: Tackling Important Questions

Misc: Tackling Important Questions

What is the circumference of a sombrero?

The sombrero is a broad-rimmed, high-crowned hat made of felt or straw, worn especially in Mexico and the southwestern United States. The term ‘sombrero’ is derived from the Spanish word sombra, meaning ‘shade’. Gentlemen wore felt sombreros, whilst peasants wore straw. 

But what is the circumference of a sombrero? According to Britannica, the brim of a sombrero in Mexico can be as much as 2 feet wide, giving it a circumference of 173”. Mariachi Connection, a high-end provider of felt sombreros, averaged out at just over 69” in circumference. Party Corner and Lifeguard Hat offer circumferences within the range of 64” – 74”, slightly larger, but noticeably composed of straw. Made in China offer exquisite sombreros designed specifically for dogs, and whilst the exact measurements were not stated, these appeared to be significantly smaller. 

To really turn the tables, if you speak Spanish, the word sombrero just means ‘hat’ and thus the circumference is largely ambiguous. Technically, if you’re wearing a beanie in Spain, the size of your sombrero is just going to be the circumference of your head. This factor varies between individuals, proving a sombrero is not a one-size-fits-all item, and appears to have no industry-wide standards in terms of its measurements. 

What makes real ale ‘real’?

Everyone knows that ‘real ale’ is an actual drink and all other ales are an intangible entity possessing a pint glass. But what is it that makes real ale so ‘real’? I went to the Farmers in St Ouen to talk to the experts. 

I was informed that real ale is real because it is flat, not dead, like the artificially carbonated stuff. It is the true “daily bread” of the middle-age male drinker. Real ale does not need gas to be pumped out of a draft because it contains a living bacteria that does the work for it. This bacteria is incredibly good for the gut and is a vital part of a healthy balanced diet. That is, unless you get the pint at the bottom of the barrel, which is too lively for your gut and will likely cause you to shit yourself. This will end your pub trip early, and so must be avoided at all costs. 

Can you outrun a snail?

Would you accept £10 million if it meant being chased by a killer snail for the rest of your life? I got asked this in the pub, and whipped out my phone to do some research. I didn’t want to make any life-altering rash decisions. How fast is the average snail? And how long would it take to travel around Jersey? 

Garden snails tend to travel at a rate of 0.048km/h at top speed. I’m assuming if this snail has the power to kill me, it would be one of the highest calibre. As such, I rounded up to 0.05km/h (to be safe). Our coastline is 70km, meaning it would take the snail 1400 hours (or 58.3 recurring days) to do a full circle. This seemed like just enough time to get comfortable and forget the whole ordeal. Sneaky snail. 

If you were to buy two houses on opposite sides of the island (L’Etacq and Gorey), you’d still have to move between them twice a month. If the snail took the northern route, he’d be knocking at your door in just under 16 days. What’s worse is that you’ll need to leave these derelict areas for provisions at some point. You let your guard down once and suddenly the snail has turned you into dead meat in an aisle of Waitrose. Or, what if the snail catches on to your tactic of aversion, and stays put for 16 days to greet you when you return? 

It seems as if the only viable option is to pick up sticks and leave the rock. Snails can’t swim, and you’d be paranoia-free in France. Getting on a boat and disappearing into the sunset seems like the way forward. I explained my theory to my friend, who sat back, laughed and said, “what’s to stop the snail from getting on the boat?”

Most stolen pint glass revealed

Are you a law-abiding citizen? Recent research suggests you may not be. According to Nisbets, on average 37 million Brits have stolen glasses or tableware from their local pub in their home. Based on two glasses costing £5, this works out to a £186 million loss in the industry. The survey further discovered that over 3 million Brits admitted that every item of crockery, glassware, cutlery and soft tableware in their home was, in fact, stolen. 

They found that the biggest culprits in the mix were the 18-24 year olds, with a shocking 34% confessing to their crimes. Next in line were 25-34 year olds, at 31%. 18% of those over 54 admitted that they are also guilty of hiding favourable items under their jackets when leaving their local establishment. 

The culmination of this petty-theft led BrewDog to call amnesty on stolen Hazy Jane glasses. Thieves were offered a free refill if they returned their glass to the bar, considered an effective business strategy in light of the heavy rate of disappearances. James Watt, the co-founder and chief executive of BrewDog, was happy that his packaging became the “most stolen glass ever”, and understands the urges of a customer dabbling with thievery. He commented, “if you are going to have a beer glass in your kitchen, we would actually rather it was a glass that you plundered from a BrewDog bar versus a Carling, Stella or Foster’s.

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