Saturday, September 13, 2003

Loyal reader and fervent faithful fickle follower Jeff writes: I was trying to participate in a live discussion with Salam Pax over at The Guardian (one of your main liberal support papers). Well, I got totally snubbed and my questions (num 13) weren't answered! Once again, this proves that I should submit my questions to a much more famous and accessible Iraqi. If you would honor me with your answers, Saddam.

1) 'What would you like Iraq (and more broadly the middle east) to look like in 30 years? In terms of religion, education, technology, ect. (after you retake the country that is)

2) What would you say to George W. Bush once you've imprisoned him? Positive things, negative things, and what should he change.

3) What unique characteristics of Iraqi culture will be exported to the rest of the world in the future? And what from other cultures will Iraq import?

4) Lastly, Would you mind if me (American) and a few friends came to Baghdad to have a beer with you? (This one, I will omit, as I am not worthy (and frightened))

Best Regards, Jeff '

Well, Jeff, I'm sorry you had a problem with Salam Pax. I can only assume that he did not realize you were one of my children (uh, I mean that figuratively, of course, as I have never, to the best of my recollection, even met your mother). I shall speak to him tomorrow, as he is scheduled to wash and wax my Chevy Vega.

That will be a tricky manuever. For obvious reasons, I can not afford to stop, so Salam will have to run alongside the car with his bucket, sponge, can of camel wax, and chamois cloth. We've done this a number of times before, and I haven't run over him yet, so I'm confident things will work out.

Now, as to your questions: They are all excellent, and demonstrate a high level of intellectual curiousity about what the future may hold for both Iraq, and the soon-to-be Islamic States of America. Also, you appear to be a borderline alcoholic. But your inquiries are extremely difficult, so I shall instead answer a different set of questions.

1) What is the square root of pi?

A--Obviousy a trick question, as the answer depends entirely on the type of pie you're talking about. Since apples have entirely different mathematical properties from, say, blueberries, the overall sine and cosine of the final baked product would be correspondingly effected by the tangents of the principle ingredients.

I have not survived this long by falling for cheaply disguised tricks.

2) What is the shortest distance between two jokes?

A--A "straight line."

3) Mars has been in the news a lot lately. Can you share some interesting facts about the fourth planet? Compare and contrast with the corresponding facts about Earth.


* Mars' diameter is 6750 km, or just over half of Earth's.

* Mars' average distance from the Sun is 217 km, or 1.52 AU. By definition, Earth is 1.0 AU (Astronomical Unit) from the Sun, or 149,597,870 km.

* Mars has two moons, both of which are far smaller than Earth's single moon.

* The average temperature of Mars is -63 celsius. Earth's is currently +15, but that figure rises every time I set an oil field on fire.

* Mars' atmosphere is 95.3% carbon dioxide and 2.7% nitrogen. Earth's is 21% oxygen and 78% nitrogen.

* Mars' axis is tilted 25.19 degrees in relation to the plane of the ecliptic. Earth's axis is tilted 23.45 degrees. It is actually this degree of orbital tilt which accounts for Earth's changing seasons, NOT our distance from the Sun. It is also why the length of our days changes by season.

* To date, no evidence has been found that life, however primitive, has ever existed on Mars. By contrast, Earth is teeming with biological activity. However, the presence of intelligent life on the planet is yet to be proven.

4) Many men became absolutely discombobulated over that kiss Madonna shared with Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera, and were reduced to quivering masses in danger of drowning in their own drool. What is it about lesbians that so fascinates men?

A--Well, I have never been a big fan of regular man/woman porn. I mean, what guy (except maybe an Episcopalian bishop) wants to look at a naked man, even if he is having sex with a woman? There's nothing on that guy that I want to see. I already have those parts, and I know how they work, so there's really nothing new there to see. That's like wasted space on my TV screen.

But watching a movie with two women, on the other hand, is like getting two for the price of one. And if the on-screen action involves THREE women, well, that's like striking gold at Costco. Talk about your quantity discounts!!