OT - Five Stupid Questions, Vital Answers

Submitted by Space Coyote on July 16th, 2013 at 8:32 AM

The board has been fairly tame lately, and likely will be once more today. Football season is drawing nearer, but is still to far ahead to create much discussion which hasn't been had before. Damnit, I need a good ol' passionate argument about something that confuses the lady in my life when I claim "this guy is wrong on the internet!" Because of this, I present to you five questions that on the surface seem stupid, in reality are stupid, but the answers could be of vital importance for those that desire to live by social norms, or for those that want to call their friends idiots.

Spurred from a debate long ago about toilet paper orientation, in which consensus seemed closest to: if you have a stupid cat or a stupid kid (face it, the kid's about 3 years old, he's likely pretty dumb still) you can put your TP folded back to the wall; otherwise, fold it over the top.

I'll post my answers below as not to clutter the OP. Here are the questions:

  1. When serving cake, should it be served warm, cold, or room temperature (this question does not include ice cream cake)?
  2. When placing cups in the cupboard, should they be placed open-side up or open-side down?
  3. When talking about the midwest region, does "midwest" imply the plains states or the Great Lakes region?
  4. When eating Oreo's, should they be eaten whole or should they be twisted apart and eaten seperately?
  5. Are stars in the night sky our past kings, fireflyies that got stuck up in that big blueish-black thing, or balls of burning gas billions of miles away which appear as a massive, luminous sphere of plasma held together by its own gravity until their ultimate demise forces them either become massive or collapse upon itself?



July 16th, 2013 at 9:16 AM ^

1) Cake should be cold - best way possible. I loved my wedding cake at room temp but, man, that shit was the best when we ate the leftovers in the fridge.

2) I think we can agree on this one - down keeps them from getting dust in them. My wife goes with having them up. I go with her because anyone who is married knows why. Even if that is crazy.

3) For people outside of the Great Lakes the Midwest is the plains. For those of us who grew up here or live here we know the Midwest as Big 10 country or around the lakes.

4) Unconsidered beat option is dunking them whole in milk. Boom.

5) Simba and Mufasa all the way - past kings clearly make up the night sky.


July 16th, 2013 at 9:28 AM ^

I think it pretty cool that stars exist because of a balance between the elemental fusion expansion forces and the gravitational forces of the stars own weight. If any one of these forces become more than the other the star will destroy itself.

Also our Milky Way galaxy, which is one of billions, is 100,000 light years wide. If we had a space ship that could travel at the speed of light it would still take 100,000 years to cross it. Who knows how long it would take to travel to other galaxies. Basically, we are fuc!#$ when it comes to interstellar space travel for quite a few years.


July 16th, 2013 at 9:33 AM ^

Re: #2 - Cups open side up or open side down:


The answer is both, but alternating.  Stemmed wine glasses and most drinking glasses are wider at the top than they are at the base.  If you alternate the glasses up/then down, you are not wasting space in the cupboard and a shelf that could hold 9 glasses with a 3 x 3 configuration could potentially hold 16 with a 4 x 4 configuration (depending on the dimensions of the glass of course).

That's a 78% increase in utilized capacity, and I didn't even need a stupid packaging engineering degree to figure it out.


July 16th, 2013 at 9:36 AM ^

1.  Cake is an overrated culinary medium whose most useful purpose is to display amusing images of cartoon animals or superheroes to delight pre-adolescent children.  After the age of 10, cake is no longer necessary.  The proper birthday treat for adolescents on up is a warm cookie with a scoop of ice cream, which kick cakes ass every time....unless we're talking about cheesecake, which is awesome and should be served cold.

2.  Glass orientation is entirely dependant upon the manner in which they are displayed.  Glasses stored in cupboards behind wooden doors are oriented open side down to avoid dust from accumulating in the bottom of the glass.  Glasses stored on open shelves or cupboards with glass panes in the doors are oriented open side up as this is more aestetically pleasing to the eye.

3.  The midwest is wherever the Big Ten expands.  Yes, this means that New Jersey and Maryland are now part of the midwest.  Pennsylvania is part of the midwest.  If the Big Ten ever adds the University of Edinburgh to it's ranks, Scotland will be part of the midwest....muawahahaha!

4.  Oreos wind up in the same condition post-mastication and are awesome solely by their very existence.  Manner of eating is irrelevant.  This is the only correct answer.

5.  Why does the sun come up?  Or are the stars just pinholes in the curtain of night?  Who knows?  What I do know is that because you were born different, men will fear you; try to drive you away, like the people of your village.  You must learn to conceal your special gift and harness it until the time of the gathering.....in the end, there can be only one.


July 16th, 2013 at 9:37 AM ^

1)  Cake is delicious regardless of temperature, but icing is best at room temperature, so your cake should be served at room temperature.  If you don't have icing on your cake, then WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU!?

2)  I go open-side down, because when I was younger I worked at a restaurant and that was how it was done.  Just stuck with me as a habit and I've had no cause to change.

3)  Anything between the Dakotas and Pennsyvania as far south as Tennessee.

4)  I put the whole oreo in my mouth and let it turn mushy before I chew it up.  Sounds gross, is gross, tastes great.

5)  If stars aren't balls of burning gas, then I have to hand it to NASA for pulling the wool over our eyes for so long.  Maybe I'll have to rethink that whole moon landing thing as well.


July 16th, 2013 at 9:46 AM ^

There are some cakes that are best served warm. Molten chocolate lava cake comes to mind but yeah in general room temp.

I don't know about that glasses question.

Great Lakes probably.

They're always good so have one or two more and experience both.

I'll go with Wikipedia also.

Mr. Yost

July 16th, 2013 at 9:46 AM ^

1. It should ALWAYS be ice cream cake

2. open side down w/ cabinet liners (exception is stackable plastic cups which should be rinsed before use)

3. Great Lakes, but it SHOULD be plain states and the lakes should be "Mideast"

4. They should be crumbled and put in ice cream or a shake

5. They're airplanes

Michigan Mizo

July 16th, 2013 at 9:51 AM ^

  1. Room temp or slightly chilled, I'm allowed to hedge since I pity the individual who serves warm cake (chocolate lava cakes excluded)
  2. Open side up, I dont trust the clenliness of my shelves
  3. midwest
  4. trick question - both.  Whole if you're dipping in milk, twisted in half otherwise.  If double stuff it's dealers choice
  5. The last one

Michigan Arrogance

July 16th, 2013 at 9:51 AM ^

1) skip cake and have pie

2) open end up unless you dust and disinfect your shelves. though so.

3) the mid west extends from ohio to the dakotas and oklahoma. those 3 states form the triangle that defines the "middle west"

4) I prefer separately or dunking- if you just eat them whole you're missing the point of the oreo and should just have another typr of cookie.

5) comong, man



these were pretty easy


July 16th, 2013 at 9:56 AM ^

When cake is cold it tastes less sweet and less flavorful overall.  Same with all cold foods because they chill your tastebuds and make them less sensitive.  Ice cream mix is sickeningly sweet when it's room temperature but works once you freeze it.  This all means that it depends on the cake.


July 16th, 2013 at 10:04 AM ^

  1. warm is best, isn't this obvious?  If 'evidence' is needed: add ice cream and enjoy
  2. I never knew they could be placed open side up...  mind blown
  3. Sure.  I think of Iowa as midwest... but what do I know
  4. Much like the hookers in my basement Oreos should be twisted apart and then eaten..
  5. 'Stars' are nothing more than light bulbs placed in the ceiling above us that we call a 'sky'.  the real truth is that we are the truman show...



Nuckin Futs

July 16th, 2013 at 10:05 AM ^

1. Cake is just a delivery system for the frosting. Cold frosting is the best so cake will come along for the ride.

2. Upside down, always has, always will

3. Midwest is a state of mind, not a geographical location.

4. Whole, in milk, so I don't find a spider and ruin a treat so great, even Weird Al was singing about it in the 90s

5. Gas ball as observed up close by the all UM crew. Space bitches..space


July 16th, 2013 at 10:19 AM ^

  1. Cake is delicious either way.  It depends on the cake though.  Some are better cold (ice cream cake, duh), some are better warm (a normal chocolate cake).
  2. Open side up.
  3. Mid west=great lakes.  The plains are the plains.
  4. Oreo's must be seperated then the cream filling must be scraped off the cookie side.  Then the two bare cookies must be soaked in milk (preferably chocolate), and then eaten.
  5. I like astronomy.

NYC Blue

July 16th, 2013 at 10:33 AM ^

Chocolate (frosted/ganache) cake should be room temp.

You want the chocolate to literally melt in your mouth.  Too cold and it does not warm up fast enough before you swallow.  Too warm, and it melts on the plate, requiring you to lick the plate clean (not a deal breaker, but consider what setting you are in- not always possible).

Glasses: open side down

Mid-west: it is all just the stuff we east-coasters fly over anyway...

Oreos: With milk.  All else is just rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic

Stars?  What are those?  I can't see anything but reflected glow at night in NYC.



July 16th, 2013 at 10:42 AM ^

The first 4 are not important, the 5th one is really a good questions...pull up a chair and sit down, and let me tell you about the universe.


First stars don't really generate "light" they absorb darkness...think about that for a min...seriously...what is the rest of the space between stars...it is dark becaase there are no stars sucking up the darkness, it is filled with dark energy and dark matter...When a star dies they can often end up as what...a black hole, why because that star has absorbed all the darkness it can and it is done.

We humans have made our own darkness absorbers through out our history. Why fire is nothing more than the most primative of darkness absorbers that we know of. When the wood or other materials begin to absorb darkness (no easy trick) it gives off lots of heat in the process and makes the area around it less dark, when they can absorb no more, all that is left is some dark crumbly stuff that is just concentrated darkness. This was just a primative one though, later someone invented the candle, which allowed us to move our darkness absorber from one room to another. The wick becomes filled with darkness as the process goes on.

Of course we are so advanced now that we use electricity to absorb the darkness. When the bulbs have absorbed all that they can, they cease to work properly. You can usually tell this by seeing the black smudges on the insides of the bulbs. They just can't absorb any more darkness.

Yes folks you have been lied too, it isn't about generating light, it is about absorbing darkness.


July 16th, 2013 at 10:47 AM ^

1. Pie always pie.  I'd only eat a cake if it was so moist it couldn't hold it's shape . . . and then we really couldn't call it cake could we.  

2.  I don't particularly care but in my cupboard the stacks of angled glasses sit next to the stacks of angled mugs, so one category has to be flipped upside down for everyone to fit.  
The glasses have lost that battle.

3.  There is a region in this country called the "Great Plains", in it reside the "Plain States".
This region happens to be to the west of the "Midwest"

4.  Whole, but then again, I eat everything whole so I really have no basis for comparison.

5.  They're eyes, and they're watching ME.


July 16th, 2013 at 10:51 AM ^

1) VIrtually every cake I have come across is best at room temperature, so if you're making one well in advance of a gathering, you can store it in the fridge and then take it out of there about an hour before you plan to eat it.

2) When the glasses come out of the dishwasher, we tend to set them on the counter open side up, but once they are stored, I tend to set them open side down. By contrast, my wife seems to have no set system, which actually is a point of contention for us, however minor (I admit, I am the one with these little hangups in our house)

3) Generally, when someone says "midwest", I associate with the Great Lakes region, although I am pretty sure the Census Bureau also includes Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri and maybe other states for some reason.

4) Whole Oreos, and if possible double-stuffed Oreos. Of course, at this stage of my life, I don't eat very many of them because then I have to run an extra half-mile.

5) I am reminded of the They Might Be Giants B-side...."The sun is a mass of incandescant gas, a gigantic nuclear furance...where hydrogen is built into helium at temperature of millions of degrees."


July 16th, 2013 at 10:53 AM ^

  1. Depends on the cake. The vast majority should be room temperature. Ice cream, as you point out, should be cold. Things like apple cake should be warm.
  2. Again, it depends. If you have contact paper down, then put them open-side down; it keeps stuff (e.g., dust, particles from your cupboards) from falling in there. If you don't have contact paper down, put them open-side up to keep the rim where your mouth goes a little bit cleaner.
  3. I've gotten in many, many arguments with a friend of my from Kansas. She contends that not only is Kansas in the midwest, but that Michigan is not (she claims Michigan is "east"). I disagree whole heartedly, the midwest includes: Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, & Iowa, as well as northern Missouri and western Pennsylvania if we're including regions of states. Nebraska and Kansas are plains states.
  4. Do what you feel. I like to twist apart two and then put the cream sides together to make an extra thick one. I also like them in milk, but hate to drink the crumb filled milk afterwards, so I usually avoid dunking them so as to not waste milk (which is really expensive these days).
  5. I'm pretty sure stars are remants of burning garbage. Either that, or they are the crystalized moments when your team loses for the first time that season and you realize that your title hopes are dead (i.e., stars are what happens to dreams when they die).


July 16th, 2013 at 11:00 AM ^

1. Cake is for children, who don't have opinions about this sort of thing because they haven't had to work desk jobs before.

2. Open-side down on one of those foam cupboard liners, unless you like drinking dust.

3. The Great Lakes region unless you're talking to deeply confused people from the Great Plains region, in which case the topic should be avoided so you can continue to respect them.

4. The correct answer to this question is that Oreos should be dropped in milk until they're soaking and dissolving, then eaten with a spoon. The problem with doing this is that American Oreos crumble, remaining crunchy, rather than dissolving. That's fucking disturbing, so in reality the only way to eat Oreos is to buy them in Europe and then drop them in milk until they're soaking and dissolving, at which point you eat them with a spoon.

5. Nobody has said that they're reflections of Denard's smile yet, which either means that you're all lacking in creativity or are getting a little less sexually obsessed with our last quarterback. Not sure which. Anyway, stars are balls of hot gas.

What? OP wanted controversy.


July 16th, 2013 at 11:05 AM ^

1. Refrigeration dehydrates and hardens anything with flour.  Room temp is best.

2. Face down on a surface that allows some air circulation like wire racks or those liners that allow it.

3. If Midwest only referred to Great Lakes states, why would we still use the term and not just say Great Lakes states?  Should we still just call all of the continents Pangaea or Rodinia?

4. I do both, why limit the pleasure of an Oreo?

5. That depends on my mood, who I am talking to, and if I am drunk or not.


July 16th, 2013 at 11:40 AM ^

a trick question?

Room temp


Ohio and Missouri Rivers (and tributaries)

Icing first

I thought the moon was made of cheese and stars are too confusing


July 16th, 2013 at 11:49 AM ^

2. You missed a key category with glasses: half right-side up, half upside-down. For pint glasses, rounded mugs, or any other drinking vessel that has a different radius at its top than at its bottom, combining alternating up-down orientations with hexagonal ordering leads to maximally efficient packing. Depending on your cabinet size, this may actually increase the number of glasses you can fit in the cabinet (it did at my last apartment, though I still don't think I ever really sold my wife on the idea).

Brewers Yost

July 16th, 2013 at 11:48 AM ^

1. Room temp. Temperature affects taste, I find room temp cake to be more flavorful.

2. I was open end up but after getting married had to convert to open end down. However, shot glasses are open end up for some reason.

3. Growing up I never thought of the plains states as part of the midwest. I associate the midwest more the Great Lakes/Rust Belt.

4. Eat them whole

5. Science Bitches

Bonus: I stand up to wipe after pooping and scruntch the toilet paper instead of folding.

Naked Bootlegger

July 16th, 2013 at 3:10 PM ^

Bonus:  We are brethren souls.   We need some sort of government-funded study to get to the "bottom" of this controversy (what % of the population does this?   And why?).   I mean, why fold the paper?!  Scruched up is so much more effective.  And why stay seated with your hand merely inches away from that cesspool of fecal-infested water?  Stand up and get away from that sh#t (literally).


July 16th, 2013 at 12:39 PM ^

  1. Room Temp. I guess cheese cake could be cool.
  2. Up. If in a closed cabinet.
  3. Plains. Great Lakes is well defined . . . midwest goes a bit further west, altthough.
  4. Whole. Unless you're a kid.
  5. Balls of Burning Gas


July 16th, 2013 at 1:39 PM ^

1. Cake should be served room temperature so that crumbly bits of cake can mix with the frosting and not go to waste by virtue of being too difficult to bother with.

2. If you cycle through your cups and glasses pretty quickly, open side up.  If not, open side down, so they don't get dusty on the inside.

3. "Midwest" includes the following states: MI, OH, IN, IL, WI, IA, MO, MN, and the eastern parts of ND, SD, NE, and KS.  You can separate into the lakes and plains sections if you like, much the same way that "the eastern seaboard" includes New England states and non-New England states, but they're still midwestern.

4. Oreos are usually best twisted apart.  Actually they're even better when you combine two Double Stuf to make a QuadStuf.  But at least I can see there being multiple sides to this debate.  What I don't get is why anyone would say the cookie part is better than the creme part.  If the cookie part were even remotely the point, they would just make cookies minus the creme.

5. If each star in the night sky represented the soul of one dead king, that would be a lot of kings and sort of ruin the point of being king.


July 16th, 2013 at 2:39 PM ^

When serving cake, should it be served warm, cold, or room temperature (this question does not include ice cream cake)?

I would think it depends on the cake. Cakes with filling (ie. molten chocolate) need to be at least warm. Birthday cake I'd say room temp, but I could see the argument for cold. I think heavily iced cakes need to be cold. A few yrs back my wife made a nice layered chocolate cake for my daughters birthday, left it on the counter. Top slid right off when no one was watching.

When placing cups in the cupboard, should they be placed open-side up or open-side down?

Up, but I always dry them before they go into the cupboard. Otherwise I think you're just asking for mildew and rotted wood.

When talking about the midwest region, does "midwest" imply the plains states or the Great Lakes region?

Neither. I'm from Missouri and to me that's Midwest and not a plains state or Great Lake state.

When eating Oreo's, should they be eaten whole or should they be twisted apart and eaten seperately?

Oreo's should be eaten whole. The twisting thing is just an advertising gimmick to sell cookies.

Are stars in the night sky our past kings, fireflyies that got stuck up in that big blueish-black thing, or balls of burning gas billions of miles away which appear as a massive, luminous sphere of plasma held together by its own gravity until their ultimate demise forces them either become massive or collapse upon itself?

The latter.


July 16th, 2013 at 5:00 PM ^

1)  Prefer cake at room temp, but Sanders bumpy cake is yummy room temp or cold, so I am not a facist for room temp cake.

2)  Down...keeps bugs out too.

3)  As noted, the Mississippi used to define what was West, so GL region is the mid-west.  Chicago was home of the Western Open for years.

4)  Double stuff...say no more.

5)  I trust astronomers are not the ones full of hot gas in regard to stars and their composition.


July 16th, 2013 at 7:23 PM ^

1) Cold. Like the texture a bit firmer myself. That said, Taking the cake out of the oven, waiting barely the requisite time to avoid burning yourself, and consuming immediately and voraciously is a very solid plan of action

2) Up. Otherwise you're making lots if little tiny greenhouses in your cupboard for the formation of nice juicy bacteria.

3) I'll be the oddball on this one. I've always considered the Midwest to be more of a cultural region, and is only defined incidentally by geography. I see the sensible midwest farmer as a different demographic than the yee-haw cattle rancher type. That divide occurs roughly at the Missouri river. So the high plains, home of wheat and cattle, is a very different place than the eastern great plains, home of corn and soy farms. Iowa would be part of the midwest, most of Nebraska would not. Incidentally, the "midwest" as far as I'm concerned syncs up almost perfectly with the traditional footprint of the Big Ten (with the exception of far eastern Ohio, which is almost like the urban, industrial northeast, and southern Ohio, which is basically West Virginia.

4) When I was a kid, my mom would always buy Oreos at the sketchy food emporium full of expired and/or oddball products. So the only kind of Oreo I ever ate was the stale kind. Consequently I didn't like Oreos all that well, and enjoyed myself playing with the cookie more than actually eating it.


5) Nuclear reactions, kind of like Bikini Atoll...

...I lost my train of thought


July 16th, 2013 at 7:36 PM ^

dividing line to be slightly to the west of the Kansas, Nebraska, and South Dakota Eastern borders.  Half of those states look act and feel Midwestern, the other half is all plains.


Tipping glasses upside down in the cupboard comes from the dust bowl days, when the fine dust from the plaines covered everything including items in your kitchen.  Most of the glasses upside down crowd are holdovers from the days when grandma's taught their home economics generation kids to stack the dishes that way.