Chef's Choice Electric 679 Glass Kettle (ETS image)

Chef’s Choice Electric 679 Glass Kettle (ETS image)

If you’re like me, you probably spend a lot of your time sitting around and musing over the great questions of existence. Take this one, for example. What would happen if you dumped all of the world’s tea into the Great Lakes? Okay, so maybe none of us were wondering about that one. But someone has taken the trouble to answer the question – or at least to theorize about what might happen in such a scenario.

The theories come from a site called What If?, where they promise to answer a new one of your hypothetical questions every Tuesday. They also tackle such burning questions as “If you call a random phone number and say ‘God bless you’, what are the chances that the person who answers just sneezed?” And so much more.

The lowdown on tea steeped in such a manner is that it would likely be quite weak. There’s plenty of facts, figures and a bit of rather daunting math at the site for anyone who wants to know the full (hypothetical) story. But the bottom line is that tea made in such a fashion would be about the same strength as if you’d dropped two drops of steeped tea into an entire bathtub full of water. Not that extra weak tea made with water from the Great Lakes is an enticing prospect in the first place.

At the same site, they also tackle whether it’s possible to boil water for you tea by stirring it with a spoon. The theory being that stirring transfers energy to the water and thus if enough energy is transferred perhaps the water will boil. Well, I hate to spoil the ending for anyone and you can read the very detailed answer (with more math) if you’re so inclined. But the fact is, if you want to boil water, you’re going to have to stick to a more traditional method, such as the stove, microwave, electric teakettle, and so on.

See more of William I. Lengeman’s articles here.

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