Should I shower during a thunderstorm?

As a kid, I was always told to avoid showers or baths during thunderstorms — especially those with lightning.

Apparently this is not an old-wives’ tale.

So, as Phoenix Monsoon 2018 rages tonight, I checked to see if I could safely take a post-work out shower.

Verdict: Nay. Source? Who else but MythBusters?

MythBusters Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage took that weather alert to task and constructed a makeshift house, complete with grounded plumbing. Then, they doused it with simulated lightning in an electricity testing facility to find out whether the voltage really could leap from the sky to the shower.

Since the MythBusters were shy about showering on camera, they hired a stand-in: a ballistics gel dummy that had roughly the same electrical conductivity as the human body. To screen for a fatal lightning strike, the dummy wore a heart monitor. The 700,000 volts of fake lightning indeed arced onto the water pipes and jumped to the shower, causing a fire.

Although the heart monitor failed to measure the amount of current swimming through the stunt dummy, the visual evidence was clear enough to rule the myth plausible. Just as the National Weather Service warns, it’s safe to shower only once thunderstorms have passed you by.

I guess I’ll wait.

Cyberbullying in the NHL?

When I was a kid, I thought pro athletes were adults. Now that I’m an adult — and older than all of them — I realize they’re just kids.

Mike Hoffman was traded twice Tuesday morning, going from the Senators to the Sharks to the Panthers, nearly a week after allegations surfaced that his fianceé harassed Ottawa captain Erik Karlsson‘s wife online.

On May 4, Melinda Karlsson filed an order of protection against Monika Caryk, Hoffman’s fianceé, alleging that she harassed the Karlssons online. That harassment included remarks about the death of their child, who was stillborn in March, via comments on Melinda Karlsson’s Instagram account under a pseudonym.

Taking Down Bowser

In college, I spent far too much time playing Nintendo games and not nearly enough studying. One of my earliest obsessions was Super Mario Bros. Eventually I got to world 8-4 and figured out a way to beat Bowser. If memory serves, I did it routinely after a while.

Then 28 years passed.

For Father’s Day 2010, my kids gave me the 25th anniversary edition Super Mario Bros. game set for the Wii. And for six-and-a-half years, my son and I whittled away at it untiul finally, this past weekend, we took down Bowser. And it felt just as exhilirating as it did in my cramped dorm room.

1989 WMU Football Coulda Been

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Apropos of nothing, I found this ticket stub from the Sept. 2 1989 Western Michigan vs. Temple game (WMU won, 31 – 24.) I leaned on College Football Reference for help in finding the score.

In looking at Western’s 5-6 record that season, I noticed the Broncos lost four of those six games each by just a point:

  • 21-20 home loss to Eastern Michigan
  • 14-13 road loss to Central Michigan
  • 19-18 road loss to Toledo
  • 31-30 home loss to Bowling Green

With a little luck, a 3-5 conference record could’ve been 5-3 or, with a lot of luck, 7-1.

Carry on.