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Author Topic: Flies flying backwards  (Read 26035 times)

Offline chris

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Flies flying backwards
« on: 07/05/2003 01:34:02 »
We received some great questions on the radio show on Monday from the inhabitants of Essex. I've listed a few of them here to tickle your fancy. I thought we could debate the answers amongst ourselves.

1) Roger - "Why don't you get an electric shock from a train"

2) John - "Any link between herbal tea and erosion of tooth enamel?"

3) Anne - "Does aspartame cause bladder cancer ?"

4) ?someone - "Why do stars twinkle, but not planets ?"

5) Mary - "Why is the moon visible in the day time?"

6) Brian - "Can flies really take off backwards ?"

7) ? - "Is it true that fishing bait contains marijuana?"

Be interested in what you lot think about the answers to these !

Chris


 

Offline Exodus

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #1 on: 07/05/2003 11:44:19 »
I'm pretty sure i've heard that flies can take off backwards.... might explain why you can never splat them!

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Offline Dickie

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #2 on: 07/05/2003 15:59:00 »
Cars build up static as they drive (similar to rubbing a balloon against yourself). You don't get the same charge build-up, as you are insulated from the car (fabric seats). Therefore, by the time the car stops, it is at a different potential to you. It is insulated from ground because of the rubber tyres, so the excess charge can't go anywhere. When you touch the metal of the car, the difference in potential causes a brief current, which can sometimes hurt.

A train has metal wheels, so doesn't build up charge.
 

Offline Dickie

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #3 on: 07/05/2003 16:09:18 »
The light travels a huge number of light years to us with no problems whatsoever, then gains a twinkle in the last few miles as a result of the atmosphere. This is why the best pictures of space come from telescopes high up- either on the top of a mountain, or in orbit.

Planets really ought to suffer the same effect. Maybe because they look bigger the naked eye can't see the twinkle.
 

Offline cuso4

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #4 on: 07/05/2003 17:54:36 »
We see the moon because it reflects the light from the sun. When moon is visible during daytime that's when it is at position where it reflects sunlight which then enters your eye.

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Offline cuso4

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #5 on: 07/05/2003 17:57:50 »
Aeroplanes also build up static during flights, this is why it needs to be discharged when fueling the aircraft because a spark could easily cause explosion.

Angel
 

Offline chris

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #6 on: 07/05/2003 19:45:21 »
Phew, that's a relief, looks like I answered most of them correctly.

Dickie - don't suns also twinkle a little bit because the light they emit is bent by giant planets in orbit around them (gravitational lensing) ?

Chris
 

Offline Dickie

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #7 on: 12/05/2003 13:44:10 »
Gravitational lensing only really becomes an issue when there's something REALLY HEAVY between the star and us, such as a black hole. I managed to avoid general relativity courses, so I can't really speak as an expert, but I seem to remember hearing about a star that could be seen next to itself because the light travelled both ways around something big and heavy.
 

Offline Dickie

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #8 on: 12/05/2003 13:46:18 »
Same problem with helicopters. If you're being rescued, you should let the ladder touch the ground before grabbing it.
 

Offline chris

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #9 on: 12/05/2003 14:40:49 »
quote:
Originally posted by Dickie

Same problem with helicopters. If you're being rescued, you should let the ladder touch the ground before grabbing it.



So what about when they lower someone down from the helicopter then - presumably they'll get a shock when they hit the ground ?

Chris
 

Offline Exodus

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #10 on: 12/05/2003 16:53:47 »
quote:
Originally posted by chris

quote:
Originally posted by Dickie

Same problem with helicopters. If you're being rescued, you should let the ladder touch the ground before grabbing it.



So what about when they lower someone down from the helicopter then - presumably they'll get a shock when they hit the ground ?

Chris




not if you jump from the ladder rather than step down or vice versa... ;)

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Offline chris

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #11 on: 12/05/2003 21:03:26 »
But what about a sea-rescue where they're hooked on ?

Chris
 

Offline Exodus

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #12 on: 12/05/2003 21:06:07 »
erm..... rubber soled boots? stops them from earthing?

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Offline Exodus

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #13 on: 14/05/2003 12:39:29 »
quote:
Originally posted by chris

We received some great questions on the radio show on Monday from the inhabitants of Essex. I've listed a few of them here to tickle your fancy. I thought we could debate the answers amongst ourselves.

1) Roger - "Why don't you get an electric shock from a train"

2) John - "Any link between herbal tea and erosion of tooth enamel?"

3) Anne - "Does aspartame cause bladder cancer ?"

4) ?someone - "Why do stars twinkle, but not planets ?"

5) Mary - "Why is the moon visible in the day time?"

6) Brian - "Can flies really take off backwards ?"

7) ? - "Is it true that fishing bait contains marijuana?"

Be interested in what you lot think about the answers to these !

Chris



Did somebody really ask question 7?????! Oh my god!

Is it true?

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Offline chris

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #14 on: 14/05/2003 22:12:09 »
mmm no one has properly answered the issue of flies taking off backwards yet either...any suggestions or sites that anyone knows of that deals with this ?
 

Offline Exodus

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #15 on: 15/05/2003 02:21:33 »
i'm sticking with  the idea that flies do take off backwards..... but then i'm drunk. anyone want to try and prove me wrong???

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Offline nilmot

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #16 on: 16/05/2003 20:24:03 »
This is a theory,

Flies might be able to take off backwards. They have tiny body weight and their wing spand is wide enough to create an air-resistance, which with this force will be able to push their body backwards.

Not [?] sure [?]

Tom
 

Offline Donnah

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #17 on: 17/05/2003 00:59:44 »
I've seen flies take off backwards (there's that backwards thing again Chris...don't take it personally).  It's much easier to catch them (or squish[}:)] them) when you know that's what they're going to do.
 

Offline teeroman

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #18 on: 17/05/2003 04:03:32 »
Oh Yah....well my grandpa has been trying to teach pigs to fly for 50 years..ever since grandma told him he could have two wives 'WHEN PIGS FLY', poor man pretty near ate himself through a full acre of pig slop one year...he is cute my grandpa...but dumb as a puck....
 

Offline Donnah

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #19 on: 17/05/2003 23:01:58 »
Did you hear the explanation of why Neil Armstrong said "Go for it Mr. Gorski!" when he landed on the moon?
 

Offline Ians Daddy

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #20 on: 12/06/2003 22:46:25 »
As far as the fly taking off backwards...could it be just that? Is it a "take off" as in a jump before it takes flight?

As far as the helicopter and sea rescues... I was in the Navy and we were doing bay drops as training. They told us not to grab the hook until it had touched the water first, due to static electricity. It was a very overcast day and plenty of static. One sailor paniced and grabbed the hook. ZAP! he flopped like a fish. So, the hook and cable would have to ground out first.
 

Offline Ians Daddy

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #21 on: 12/06/2003 22:47:49 »
I guess number 7 would depend on what you were fishing for...hehehe
 

Offline Donnah

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #22 on: 13/06/2003 18:19:28 »
A stone(d) fish?
Fish you cook in a pot?
Reefer fish?
 

Offline Ians Daddy

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #23 on: 16/06/2003 07:52:39 »
He he he....or Smoked salmon? Something with Herb butter?  To go deep T.H.Sea fishing? Puffer fish?
Weedy sea dragon? Skunk clown? Pipefish? Indian smoke angel? High hat? Red eye tetra? Sorry, I got carried away. Being silly. Had to look most of 'em up.
 

Offline Donnah

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #24 on: 18/06/2003 01:22:40 »
Ha ha ha!  Someone else with the same ridiculous sense of humor that I have!
 

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Re: Flies flying backwards
« Reply #24 on: 18/06/2003 01:22:40 »

 

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