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Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Cast Iron Pan
If you want to evenly space them, it's easiest to alternate between the Arctic and Antarctic. Some people just go to the Arctic twice, near the equinoxes so the visits are almost 6 months apart, but it's not the same.
Title text: If you want to evenly space them, it's easiest to alternate between the Arctic and Antarctic. Some people just go to the Arctic twice, near the equinoxes so the visits are almost 6 months apart, but it's not the same.

Explanation

Ambox notice.png This explanation may be incomplete or incorrect: Each of the advices should be explained/discussed individually - Please change this comment when editing this page. Do NOT delete this tag too soon.

White Hat takes the old myth that you shouldn't wash your cast iron pan with soap [1] [2] [3] and runs with with to absurdity and beyond. In the end even Cueball begins to doubt his advice.

The three advices:

  • Never clean a cast-iron pan with soap.
    • Why: It destroys the seasoning.
    • Comment:
  • Apply moisturizer to the pan daily to keep it fresh
    • Why: To avoid wrinkles.
    • Comment:
  • Twice a year, fill the pan with iron filings and leave it in direct sunlight for 24 hours.
    • Why: No reason given, but if you are not willing to travel to a place where the sun shines 24 hours in a day you simpy don't deserve a cast-iron pan.
    • Comment:

Obviously it is impossible to expose anything to direct sunlight (assuming that you remain stationary) for 24 hours straight at most latitudes, because the sun will set before 24 hours have passed. For this reason, White Hat suggests to travel to the Arctic, where the sun indeed doesn't set for approximately a half year. Since this procedure supposedly becomes necessary exactly twice a year, you would have to alternate between the Arctic and the Antarctic every six months to visit each place during its respective summer. The title text is referring to the fact that since the sun isn't setting for about a half year, you could also go to just one of the poles right after sunrise and right before sunset (the equinoxes) to get 24 hours of sunlight. However, according to White Hat, this is not the same, because is doesn't lead to an exact six month spacing, or if you make it exactly six months, the sun would already be very low and the sunlight would not be as intense.

Transcript

[White Hat is holding a pan by the handle pointing to the frying surface as he shows it to Cueball.]
White Hat: Never clean a cast-iron pan with soap. It destroys the seasoning.
Cueball: Got it.
[White Hat shift the pan to his right hand and lowers it to his side holding a finger up in front of Cueball.]
White Hat: If you ever let soap touch the pan, throw it away. You're clearly not up to taking care of it.
Cueball: Wow, okay.
[In a frame-less panel White Hat has taken the pan back to the first hand holding on the the edge while he holds his other hand close to the frying surface.]
White Hat: Apply moisturizer to the pan daily to keep it fresh.
Cueball: ...Moisturizer?
White Hat: Do you want it to get all wrinkly?
Cueball: ...I...guess not.
[White Hat has shifted the pan to the second hand again holding it by the handle away from Cueball, while pointing at Cueball with the other hand.]
White Hat: Twice a year, fill the pan with iron filings and leave it in direct sunlight for 24 hours.
Cueball: Wait. 24 hours of sun?
White Hat: If you're not willing to travel to the Arctic, you don't deserve cast iron.


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