We ask the questions…

that others fear to ask.  Or, alternatively, need an excuse to cover random thoughts that have occurred to me during the past day.

When I went out this morning, I saw a dog urinating against a lamp-post – nothing unusual there.  However, uric acid is a component of urine – whether human or canine – and as an, albeit weak, organic acid will presumably eat away at the base of any street furniture used as a convenient territory marker over time.  Does street furniture in popular dog walking areas erode faster than elsewhere?  It will also be increasing the eutrophication of our urban spaces.  Surely, dogs should be charged council tax to cover the damage?  Or perhaps they could be fitted with collection equipment?  Not so long ago, urine was a valuable industrial feedstock…

More recently, I saw a television programme trailed as being “adrenaline fuelled”.  Ignoring the failure to use either the proper IUPAC name or the now preferred “epinephrine”, I found myself wondering how effective adrenaline would be as a fuel.  It is an organic molecule and so would burn, though I have been unable to ascertain its calorific value via a web search.  I would guess it has a similar CV to glucose or protein – so perfectly respectable, but hardly a go-to choice for fuel and it would probably make unleaded look quite cheap.  I suppose if it could be extracted from the stressed – perhaps harvested from a rollercoaster or at horror movies – it might be considered a renewable or low-carbon option – but, frankly, there must be better ways to tackle climate change.

One thought on “We ask the questions…

  1. Semibreve says:

    On the subject of harvesting adrenaline, may I point you towards the wonderful film, Monsters, Inc.? The entire film was given over to such matters. I saw said animation at the cinema, one of only a handful of occasions when I have viewed the silver screen. The mini-film with which the experience started (ignoring the presence of trailers and Pearl & Dean and the like) was so good that I nearly didn’t stay for the main feature as I didn’t think it would live up to its herald. I’m glad I did stay. So much did I enjoy it that I purchased a VHS copy of the film, which I have to this day, although it is now gathering dust. I still have the ability to play such things, so this might just be the excuse I need to curl up on the sofa and while away a couple of hours in front of the goggle-box.

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