Grace kicks Cub Scouts’ asses.
Not literally. There’s no badge for that. This kid, though, has mastered the art of fire-pit building. Not just a tidy little campfire, either. The kid builds a fire pyre. Only we don’t toss bodies on it. No sacrifices, no executions, no Dark Lord of the Sith just after he switched back from the dark side getting lit up.
She knows just the right proportion of kindling and bigger branches and bigger branches still and just where to stuff the fire-starting newspaper.
Mastery slinks to the realm of the grotesque in the flash of a flame, though.
Keep a close eye on this one when the flames shoot up. She’s a bit … enthusiastic when it comes to watching things burn. Sure, it’s just marshmallows and leaves and the ends of sticks now, but what if this goes unchecked? Reminds me of this guy a little.
1. Why does wood turn white when it burns?
It’s God’s way of showing Cro Magnon man that the fire’s ready for the rack of mammoth ribs.
Not all parts of wood fuel the fire. The white leftovers – those elements in wood and charcoal – don’t burn. That’s when we put meat on the charcoal grill. The layer of white ash means flames won’t shoot up anymore and scorch dinner. What happens to all those elements that make up wood?
It undergoes a chemical transformation. Fire busts up the molecules of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and carbon become carbon dioxide, trace gases, water and particulate matter – the ashes.
2. If the ball is still moving when the clock runs out in soccer, is the game still over?
As with the bulk of the laws of soccer – everything’s at the referee’s discretion.
Soccer, unlike any other sport with a clock, ends when the ref says it ends.* It varies by age group, but a regulation soccer match includes two 45-minute halves – plus time the official arbitrarily adds for delays such as injury, ball-hunting and pauses to raise the flag on and sing God Bless America on Sept. 11 (this happened to us once.)
Refs are supposed to stop the game on a breakaway, but we’ve seen that too. Once those three staccato whistles blow, it’s all over.
*Unless you play at a rural Stanly county high school at which football is king. In that case, they run the clock – and buzzer – like it was Friday Night Lights. Bastards. Especially when the score is tied.
3. What are those made of?
Wouldn’t it be cool if it was made out of chocolate?
I’m pretty sure it’s concrete.
It’s part of new overpasses going on bunches of cross streets on Independence Boulevard here in Charlotte.
(It’s not a very good picture, Marie said as she emailed it to me. I know, kid, but when your sis asks a question when the light turns green, that’s the best I got!)
I’m fairly certain this will go down as the worst answer ever in Coach Daddy history.
4. Where did they film the first Star Wars?
I can always count on Star Wars, dinosaurs or football to get me out of trouble here.
George Lucas shot the original Star Wars (I won’t ever call it A New Hope) in Tunisia and Guatemala.
They filmed scenes in Luke Skywalker’s house in Matmata, in pit homes the natives abandoned shortly after filming for new homes a few miles away.
Remember when R2-D2 and C-3PO trekked across the Dune Sea? That was La Grande Dune, dangerously near the Algerian border. There’s a place still called Star Wars Canyon, in Sidi Bouhel (Tunisian cities have cool names), where the Jawas snagged R2 and 3PO. It also appears in Raiders of the Lost Ark.
A fishing town called Ajim served as Mos Eisley, where Obi-Wan and Han Solo meet, and Greedo went to be with Jesus. Obi-Wan’s remote bachelor pad was set on a hill overlooking the Gulf of Gabes. The rebel base shown near the end of the movie is a Mayan temple complex in Tikal, Guatemala.
One more cool thing: That’s an elephant in that Bantha costume!
5. Do you think Hide My Pigeons would be a cool rock-band name?
Cooler than Empty of Bamboo, Consensual Researcher or Earl Necessity. Also it’s cooler than Captain Cardiac and the Coronaries, 50 Ways to Kill Me or Jalopy Taco Stand. Can you figure out which set of three are real bands, and which set comes from the Band Name Generator?
Hide My Pigeons would make gnarly tour shirts.
And album covers. Are there still such a thing?
One request … don’t do your cover of “Light My Fire” around your sister, okay?