Hello dear readers, it’s MAILBAG MONDAY again! On this special day I will search through my mountain of reader mail and answer the five most pressing questions!
What’s that you say? Do I really get that much mail? Well, I’ll admit…the contact sectionof this website doesn’t get used that often, but, one of the perks of wordpress stats is that I can see the google search terms that people use to find my site. And I’m going to go ahead and pretend that these search terms will count as reader mail, since they are often entered in the form of a question. So as you read these, remember that each “question” was something that someone actually typed into google that brought up my site as a hit which they then clicked on thus letting wordpress stats report to me the search they used to find my site. I could make up the questions myself, but it turns out the actual google searches are far better than anything I could come up with!
This month I answer the following questions:
- Stephanie Meyer limited world building?
- How to use prime numbers in cryptography for kids?
- Bad Boys 2 meme?
- Video leda and the swan?
- Mustache contest?
So, without further ado, it is time to dig into the old Mailbag to see what kind of things have been on my readers’ minds in the last month!
Stephanie Meyer limited world building?
While Meyer, author of the beloved Twilight series, might not approach the depth and nuance of someone like Tolkien’s world-building, she actually has done quite a bit more work on the twilight universe than you might think.
In fact, a lot of it wasn’t even for the novels, she also did a lot of behind the scenes work to fully flesh out the world of the films. How do I know this? Well, after answering an open casting call, I managed to land the part of Cöunt Isley von L’Unruh:
Cöunt L’Unruh, was a 500 year old German vampire with a predilection for high school girls because “he doesn’t get older, and they, also, stay the same age.” Also, he totally woke up with his hair like that. Sadly my part was cut when test audiences felt like they really would have just preferred to see Mathew Mccounaughey in the role.
How to use prime numbers in cryptography for kids?
Ah, great question, this would be a great way for a kid to learn about both secret codes and prime numbers. All you’ll need to do is follow these x easy steps!
- Ask a parent to give you two very large prime numbers–we’ll call them “p” and “q.” (I’d say about 200 digits would do it…careful though, only about one in every 460 two hundred digit numbers is a prime!)
- Multiply these two numbers together (don’t forget to carry the 1!) to get a s00per big number–we’ll call it “n.”
- Find two inverses mod (p-1)(q-1)–we’ll call them “e” and “d.” Obviously, (M^e)^d ≡ M (mod n), so I think you can see where this is going (if you are getting confused, don’t forget this part really just comes down to the Chinese Remainder Theorem and Fermat’s Little Theorem–and don’t forget those safety glasses!)
- Wow your friends with a super cool open key cryptographic code!
Bad Boys 2 meme?
You know what? It has been a while since I mined Bad Boys 2 for humor, so, sure, here you go:
Oh dog! How did you even get that number!?
Video leda and the swan?
Oddly, the story of Zeus assuming the form of a swan and doing a chick has not been adapted into any film production that I was aware of.
I thought about just posting this classic again:
But then I stumbled across this:
Turns out I was wrong! Leda and the swan had been turned into a motion picture apparently. Though, I have a feeling the actual act was not quite as consensual as it is portrayed in that clip.
I’ve never really had enough facial hair to properly enter a mustache contest, but, I must admit, I’ve always been intrigued as to what I’d look like with a bit of facial hair. Usually I chicken out after a couple of days when I realize I just look like someone who isn’t able to grow proper facial hair but is trying anyway.
However, I was recently talked into seeing how long I could actually let it go…after about a week and a half I finally couldn’t take it, and shaved it off. This is the story of my reverse transformation into clean shaven Isley.
My big problem is that when I just let it go I feel like it just looks kind of messy. I forgot to take the “before” picture in the bathroom, so this one (from a few days before my shave) will have to do:
Anyway, once I had enough of looking like a homeless Russel Brand and decided it was high time to shave it off. Though first I decided to try cleaning it up a bit:
I have a feeling, much like throwing up the horns at a metal show, “thumbs out” is probably a major faux pas when throwing up a “west side.” Either way, I wasn’t sure this was my look, so I tried taking off the sides:
While this did give me a chance to work on my “subtle duckface,” I still wasn’t feeling this one. Maybe if I really let it go and got an Ivan the Terrible pointy beard thing going on…but who has the patience for that? So up next, just the stache:
As you can tell from my face, I wasn’t exactly a fan of this one. That was actually the best picture I was able to take! Anyway, I tried one last one before everything came off:
I think it works pretty well! But, there might not be that many Chaplin fans out there, so maybe I’m best just sticking with my baseline clean shaven look.