No, it doesn't turn blue in the freezer November 29, 2007 10:30 AM   Subscribe

AskMe thread on chilling Coke, specifically this answer, makes Lifehacker's list of Top 10 Food and Drink Hacks. Comments contain doubt as to the real identity of Mefi's own asavage.
posted by casarkos to MetaFilter-Related at 10:30 AM (86 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

How will we ever convince them?!
posted by dead_ at 10:33 AM on November 29, 2007


Well, to be clear it looks like only one commenter is slightly skeptical (I love the term "myth-tern").
posted by mathowie (staff) at 10:35 AM on November 29, 2007


I'd have tased his ass, too.
posted by dersins at 10:37 AM on November 29, 2007 [9 favorites]


Clearly, someone with a lifehacker account needs to link the podcast interview.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:40 AM on November 29, 2007


Let me say, for the millionth time, that cooling drinks in a bucket of ice water is not a "hack".

If it was road salt and you chipped the ice of the inside of an antique freezer and the bucket was a hat and you were on a runaway train where your only companion was an old Albanian man who didn't speak English who had a glass eye and instead of Coke it was a hydraulic line connected to the brakes that would stop the train, that would be a hack. This is just common sense.
posted by GuyZero at 10:40 AM on November 29, 2007 [23 favorites]


dersins, you're grazin' for a tasin' with that schtick. Ixnay.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:41 AM on November 29, 2007 [2 favorites]


asavage: now 70% genuine!
posted by Kirth Gerson at 10:42 AM on November 29, 2007


Let me say, for the millionth time, that cooling drinks in a bucket of ice water is not a "hack".

Let's see now.

On one side we have a few people trying to defend a use of the word "hack" that was only invented about thirty years ago.

On the other side we have a huge number of people repurposing the word "hack" to a new, rather widely agreed upon usage.

Hmm.... who will win, who will win...
posted by tkolar at 10:45 AM on November 29, 2007


GuyZero, nice CommentHack.
posted by brain_drain at 10:46 AM on November 29, 2007 [6 favorites]


I totes saw that episode of Mythbusters!

For the record, in case anyone was curious, I really am a metroid.
posted by Metroid Baby at 10:50 AM on November 29, 2007


Let me say, for the millionth time, that cooling drinks in a bucket of ice water is not a "hack".

Whatta buncha fuckin' hacks.
posted by nasreddin at 10:51 AM on November 29, 2007


Let's see now.

On one side we have a few people trying to defend a use of the word "hack" that was only invented about thirty years ago.

On the other side we have a huge number of people repurposing the word "hack" to a new, rather widely agreed upon usage.

Hmm.... who will win, who will win...



Those who look at the origin of the word will win.
posted by iamabot at 10:53 AM on November 29, 2007


Bullshit, chilling a can of coke is NOT sexist, it's just something guys say to each other, geez.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:54 AM on November 29, 2007 [1 favorite]


I'm going to quote myself from an old thread on the blue.

"What pisses me off most about [the usage of 'hack'] is I think the term "mod" would be more appropriate in most of the sentences in which they use "hack." I had a spectacular recent example, but then I forgot it because I had to go hack my drink (Read: Get more ice)."

See, when I said that I was being facetious, people. Using ice to cool something is not a hack. I am not hacking my shoes when I tie the laces. I am not hacking my soup when I heat it up in the microwave.

End the madness.
posted by CitrusFreak12 at 10:56 AM on November 29, 2007 [7 favorites]


On the other side we have a huge number of people repurposing the word "hack" to a new, rather widely agreed upon usage.

OMG EVIL PROSCRIPTIVISM!

Seriously, if people want to use "hack" to mean "commonly used method well known by anyone who was not born yesterday" then fine, be my guest.

Also, your outfit from Wal-Mart looks very sophisticated and expensive.
posted by GuyZero at 10:58 AM on November 29, 2007


In order to stimulate my salivary glands and improve the taste of meat, I sometimes sprinkle crystals of sodium chloride on it. Is this a body hack or a food hack?
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 10:58 AM on November 29, 2007 [6 favorites]


someone who potentially missed an asavage podcast interview also needs said podcast link. namely me. please.
posted by garlic at 11:00 AM on November 29, 2007


Maybe the LH readers/commenters are jealous that they don't have their own MythBusters easter egg?
posted by eyeballkid at 11:00 AM on November 29, 2007


Garlic: here.
posted by eyeballkid at 11:01 AM on November 29, 2007 [1 favorite]


I like how well casarkos hacked this post by putting links in it.
posted by shmegegge at 11:01 AM on November 29, 2007 [1 favorite]


I just hacked and modded MetaFilter by posting my own comments on it!
posted by fandango_matt at 11:03 AM on November 29, 2007


This is as good a time as any to bring this up again.
posted by Krrrlson at 11:06 AM on November 29, 2007


This is as good a time as any to bring this up again.

That page makes me want to hack ChatZilla.

In the older usage.

Into pieces. With an axe.
posted by enn at 11:10 AM on November 29, 2007


Hey, if making popcorn on the stove is a hack then chilling soda sure is.
posted by ALongDecember at 11:11 AM on November 29, 2007


Shit, Krrrlson beat me to it.
What. The. Hack.
posted by ALongDecember at 11:12 AM on November 29, 2007


It happens, ALongDecember. Don't sweat.

But that reminds me: does anybody remember that time kottke hacked his popcorn?
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:13 AM on November 29, 2007


imabot writes...
Those who look at the origin of the word will win.

Interestingly enough, *none* of those definitions covers GuyZero's example.
posted by tkolar at 11:14 AM on November 29, 2007


I'm just thankful that I never seem to hear "OMG you said hacker to mean computer criminal when you should have said cracker" anymore.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 11:19 AM on November 29, 2007 [1 favorite]


Thanks cortex. I'll take this time to say that I'm sorry for now making two jokes about him on Metafilter. Come on back soon jkottke.
posted by ALongDecember at 11:22 AM on November 29, 2007


This is as good a time as any to bring this up again.

that brings up memories.
posted by Stynxno at 11:24 AM on November 29, 2007


OMG EVIL PROSCRIPTIVISM!

Maybe we can all take a pledge to use/not use the word "hack" on MetaFilter?
posted by ericb at 11:24 AM on November 29, 2007


Here's a good defining line: Does it involve duct tape?
posted by boo_radley at 11:25 AM on November 29, 2007


*adds "descriptivism", "prescriptivism" flags; watches site melt*
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:26 AM on November 29, 2007 [4 favorites]


I was using the word "hack" long before I became one.
posted by blue_beetle at 11:27 AM on November 29, 2007


hack hack hacks hack hack hacks' hacks
posted by brain_drain at 11:28 AM on November 29, 2007 [1 favorite]


End the madness hackness.

Hacked that for you.
posted by solotoro at 11:28 AM on November 29, 2007 [4 favorites]


*none* of those definitions covers GuyZero's example.

Many people use hack as a noun-ifyed version of "jury-rigged" or "makeshift". Which, to me, is OK. But it isn't in the dictionary as such.

SO WHO'S A PRESCRIPTIVIST NOW, EH?
posted by GuyZero at 11:28 AM on November 29, 2007


Hacking is overrated. I find a smooth stabbing-thrust, or a slice type motion is much more effective. It allows for a cleaner follow through, if one is needed.
posted by quin at 11:33 AM on November 29, 2007 [2 favorites]


I would never have known that ice makes things cold without this. Thank you, asavage. Thank you.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 11:35 AM on November 29, 2007


I have to agree, there's nothing "hack" about this. At best, it's a tip, and one most bartenders know, at that.
posted by Miko at 11:40 AM on November 29, 2007


Those who look at the origin of the word will win

What a ridiculous idea. But perhaps you use nice to mean 'ignorant' (its original meaning)?
posted by languagehat at 11:41 AM on November 29, 2007 [2 favorites]


I miss the days of Mac OS 8, when we had Hacker's Helper. Now, I can't get hacking assistance anywhere.
posted by porn in the woods at 11:42 AM on November 29, 2007


I guess 'Lifehacker' is just a way cooler name than "Household Hints."

This is not ASAVAGIST, by the way. The answer was a very fine and apt one. The apparent stunned, chimplike awe of the onlookers is what confuses me. Haven't these folks ever stocked a cooler?
posted by Miko at 11:43 AM on November 29, 2007


dersins, you're grazin' for a tasin' with that schtick. Ixnay.

By now, I'd have tased his ass, too.
posted by loquacious at 11:43 AM on November 29, 2007


Crap, languagehat is catching on about why I'm always saying how "nice" he is.
posted by GuyZero at 11:43 AM on November 29, 2007


And here I've been drinking hot Coke. When it could've been cold in 2 minutes. I've learned so much today.

Alas, if only I could get back the precious moments of my life that I've wasted by burying my Cokes in sand and taking a flamethrower to them. Fun though it may have been.
posted by miss lynnster at 11:44 AM on November 29, 2007


Seriously, if people want to use "hack" to mean "commonly used method well known by anyone who was not born yesterday" then fine, be my guest.

Putting a soda can in a bucket with ice, water and salt and then agitating the can in the water is a commonly used method? I had never heard of it before.
posted by mullacc at 11:44 AM on November 29, 2007


I had never heard of it before.

The fact that I did not know how babies were made until I was 12 did little to impact the birth rate during those twelve years.
posted by GuyZero at 11:50 AM on November 29, 2007 [4 favorites]


Citrusfreak, what is this "laces" you speak of?
posted by Mister_A at 11:51 AM on November 29, 2007


When bartenders start running low in the cooler on a crazy night, they usually have to run to some room-temperature, liquor-storage area in the restaurant, pull a case of whatever it is, and get it cold really fast. They don't just shove it in a cooler with ice - that's too slow. They add water to the ice, and then slush the cans around in the ice water. It makes a lot of sense if you think about it: ice cools the water to 32 degrees, and yet it can cover every miniscule bit if surface area on the can or bottle, conducting heat away from the can much faster than air. If you just put the beer on ice, only the areas in direct contact with the ice will be quite as cold; the areas in contact with only air will be slower to cool, because air is not as efficient a conductor as water.

Adding salt isn't usually done in bars - that's a nice finesse touch - but it wouldn't be unfamiliar to anyone who's made homemade ice cream or thrown rock salt on a frozen pathway.
posted by Miko at 11:52 AM on November 29, 2007 [1 favorite]


Ha! lynnster you dumbass.
posted by Mister_A at 11:52 AM on November 29, 2007


Haven't these folks ever stocked a cooler?

Sure, I've always stocked coolers with just ice. And I don't think I've witnessed it done any other way. I suppose the big metal tubs full of beer at bars on busy nights may have been stocked with a water/ice mixture, but I've always assumed they started out the evening full of ice which eventually melted. And I've certainly never seen anyone stocking a cooler bring along some salt to complete the project. Nor have I seen anyone stirring the cooler.
The fact that I did not know how babies were made until I was 12 did little to impact the birth rate during those twelve years.

I wasn't trying to contradict you, GuyZero. I was merely stating my ignorance on the matter. I'd like to know if this is really a commonly used method that I somehow missed out on. And how/where I was supposed to learn it. My guess is that your answer will be that I should've instinctively applied the lessons I learned in high school physics? But I find it hard to believe that most people don't fail this test as well. And I've never been a bartender--but I can't believe I'm alone in that either.
posted by mullacc at 11:58 AM on November 29, 2007


Sometimes I open my coke up in front of women on the street. So what.
posted by poppo at 12:03 PM on November 29, 2007


[...] but it wouldn't be unfamiliar to anyone [...]

I don't think common familiarity is a useful delineator for hack. I.E. just because a technique is well known doesn't mean it's not a hack.

For example, I just fixed a device with a broken screw mounting by giving up on the mounting and supergluing the screw into place. There's nothing obscure about that, but it was a fairly hackish solution.
posted by tkolar at 12:08 PM on November 29, 2007


Citrusfreak, what is this "laces" you speak of?

I found that when walking, my shoes sometimes came off my feet. After about an hour or so of brainstorming, I tried tying the strings that come on my sneakers into knots, thus securing them to my feet.

It's a much more convenient hack than using duct-tape, and somewhat less painful than using a nailgun.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to don my hacked sneakers, and use them to hack the campus to get to the library, and hack my anthropology paper, which is about the role of Native American women in hacking the fur trade (at that time, people used to hack animals by killing them and removing their skin, but to get to North America they'd have to hack the ocean using boats).
posted by CitrusFreak12 at 12:20 PM on November 29, 2007 [3 favorites]


LifeHacker is Hints From Heloise meets the giveaway section of the Podunk Shopper wrapped up in an irritating t-shirt and trendy glasses - occasionally there's something of value, but for the most part it's all smelly mattresses and last year's hot Christmas gift punctuated with "Well, duh!" revelations.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:30 PM on November 29, 2007 [4 favorites]


Except for when they rip-off AskMe.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:31 PM on November 29, 2007


Nice.
posted by Mister_A at 12:41 PM on November 29, 2007


I've never stocked a cooler, but I can finally do those Magic Eye things.
posted by JanetLand at 1:03 PM on November 29, 2007


hack hack hacks hack hack hacks' hacks

I feel like I've been buffaloed.
posted by grateful at 1:21 PM on November 29, 2007 [2 favorites]


Obligitory link to Lore's article Condense Your Day With the Life-Hacking FAQK - Soon, "making cocoa" will be called "milk hacking."
posted by Gary at 1:28 PM on November 29, 2007


Come to think of it, as much as "hack" means doing something quickly, sloppily, and with little regard to future consequences my entire *life* is a hack.
posted by tkolar at 1:56 PM on November 29, 2007


If there was a strike of the Blogwriters Guild, and these folks subverted the strike by bringing on semi-skilled scab bloggers to keep the content flowing, that'd be a Lifehacker hack hack.

Wait! I've got more!

Okay: someone should write a book, about the philosophy of examining life for improvisations and shortcuts and other such non-intuitive solutions to life's daily challenges, and they could call it The Klugetrain Manifesto.

Yes! Okay! I'll sit down now.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:01 PM on November 29, 2007 [2 favorites]


It's not the ice water that's the hack. It's the salt, IMO.

Of course ice water cools things, but add the salt and it cools things faster.
posted by utsutsu at 2:15 PM on November 29, 2007


I'd like to know if this is really a commonly used method that I somehow missed out on.

The hack is in the eye of the beholder I suppose.

But you basically know my answer. Yes, it should just be obvious based on high school physics. When I see someone hawking (hocking?) hacks, I want to find something that I couldn't have thought of myself. Not something that I read in chapter 12 of "Farmer Boy" when Almanzo Wilder makes ice cream using ice and salt in 1882.

Next up: sock hacks! How to remove the holes from old socks!
posted by GuyZero at 2:17 PM on November 29, 2007


Tip: You can hack water to get ice by freezing it. You can also hack battery acid, sugar and carbonated water to get coke. Then add some hacked water to cool it.
posted by Elmore at 3:08 PM on November 29, 2007


MetaTalk hack: Enter text in the textbox at the bottom of the page, then click the "Post Comment" button, and voila! You've edited a webpage!
posted by blue_beetle at 3:16 PM on November 29, 2007


Those two commenters mustn't have seen the electrical tape MeFi in the back of the blueprint room.

Maybe there needs to be a new metatalk thread about it, so they'll know about it for sure.
posted by CKmtl at 3:21 PM on November 29, 2007


Cold drinks? How quaint. Give me a nice steaming mug of Hot Dr. Pepper any day!
posted by turaho at 3:23 PM on November 29, 2007


"Next up: sock hacks! How to remove the holes from old socks!"

Darn, that's the end.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:27 PM on November 29, 2007 [2 favorites]


So, by definition, people who use such hacking are hacks.
posted by ersatz at 3:30 PM on November 29, 2007


"I guess Kevin Mitnick has bronchitis."
"How can you tell?"
"Hacking cough."
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:46 PM on November 29, 2007


Unfortunately, when I tried this I had put the bucket on a too high shelf and when I retrieved it I spilt the contents down the front of myself. I consequently ended up with a nasty chill and a dry hacking cough.
posted by tellurian at 3:51 PM on November 29, 2007


Can someone point me to the MeFi origin of this tasing in joke before I resort to another misguded MeTa thread?
posted by roofus at 4:26 PM on November 29, 2007


Here you go.
posted by cortex (staff) at 4:33 PM on November 29, 2007


they could call it The Klugetrain Manifesto.

Oh, man, I love this (*registers domain name*), but I've always mentally pronounced kludge with a schwa -- 'kluhdge' -- and I wonder if many other people do, too.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:21 PM on November 29, 2007


Move the '@' using the arrow keys until you run into the 'g', this will cause you to attack, instead of using the keyboard commands. I read about that hack on the 'net.







Tip your veal, try the waitress.
posted by Snyder at 5:23 PM on November 29, 2007


but I've always mentally pronounced kludge with a schwa

I vacillated on the pronunciation in college, when I first encountered the word; I think the first firm position I took up was the schwa variant, but I've since come over firmly to 'klooj'.

I feel like "kluhj" sounds (and, with the d-variant spelling, looks) like some cousin of "bludgeon", which fits some varieties of kluges well enough—hitting the side of the television set, or brute-forcing an algorithmic solution when the "slow" way will be done running before you ever finish debugging the "correct" solution.

But not every kluge is a bludgeon—some of them are elegant in their counter-intuitiveness and hackery, so I've found I like 'klooj' more for avoiding those bludgeon-y implications. It sound more like German engineering, this way, like some clever bit of European efficiency. Duct tape has its applications, but I like my kluges to have a little more structural integrity.
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:14 PM on November 29, 2007


(And the above is proof on paper of my current crisis in quotation preferences. I used to be an always-double-quoter, but I've been dabbling in single-quotes more lately. For something like a single word or short phrase in a non-quotation context, it seems to feel a little better. A little more appropriate. I dunno. I kind of have a cold.)
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:17 PM on November 29, 2007


Wow, I've been mispronouncing that word for years.

I'll need to hack together some kind of guide to remind me how to pronounce it.

I could use the hack of combining all the words in the language in a big paper book in aphabetical order with guides on pronunciation and definitions. I'll call it a "Dictionar-E"
posted by Megafly at 6:57 PM on November 29, 2007


and the bucket was a hat

Would somebody kindly write a song called this?
posted by davejay at 9:46 PM on November 29, 2007


My favorite comment from that link:

It's not really a hack but since some items on this list aren't, I feel okay in suggesting this...

Support your local farmers, particularly ones who practice sustainable agriculture. It's better for you (produce quality), it's better for the community (supporting local business), it's better of the environment (less fossil fuels, fewer pesticides, fewer toxic runoffs into the water table, carbon footprint, blah blah blah).

For me, this is as simple as going to farmers market on Sunday mornings.


LOLgasm. What a fucking load.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 7:20 AM on November 30, 2007


I gave a hideously wanktastic lecture a couple of years ago about hacks (I honestly compared the hacking of Paris Hilton's sidekick to B.S. Johnson's The Unfortunates... gah, why am I admitting this?!), and the first question at the end was 'When you say hacks, do you just mean cool stuff people do?'
posted by jack_mo at 5:41 PM on November 30, 2007


Huh. That Ask-me is exactly one year old, prohibiting posting new comments.
posted by delmoi at 9:45 PM on November 30, 2007


Miko writes "They add water to the ice, and then slush the cans around in the ice water. It makes a lot of sense if you think about it: ice cools the water to 32 degrees, and yet it can cover every miniscule bit if surface area on the can or bottle, conducting heat away from the can much faster than air. If you just put the beer on ice, only the areas in direct contact with the ice will be quite as cold; the areas in contact with only air will be slower to cool, because air is not as efficient a conductor as water. "

Anyone remember getting pop in glass bottles out of a water filled cooler in corner stores? Store keepers liked those coolers because they could cool several cases of pop within minutes of stocking while not needing a huge condensing unit. And the water within was cooled to below freezing in many cases, only the circulation of the water kept the coils from freezing up. I serviced a unit once where the pump seized up and when I got to the unit there was a monsterous block of ice encasing several dozen bottles.
posted by Mitheral at 10:36 PM on November 30, 2007 [1 favorite]


I totally do remember that, Mitheral - the strongest sense memory of it, in fact, is how damn cold those coolers were. When you had to plunge into the slush with your entire hand and forearm to get that last lone bottle of Dr. Pepper - or worse, when the stock was mixed and you had to pull a bunch of different bottles out and throw the rejects back until you got the soda you wanted - the intense chilling pain! I can remember the minutes it would take for the stiffened fingers and blue flesh to recover from a soda-bottle fishing expedition.

I'm not exaggerating!
posted by Miko at 2:20 PM on December 1, 2007


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