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*[[List of all comics]] contains a table of most recent xkcd comics and links to the rest, and the corresponding explanations. There are incomplete explanations listed [[:Category:Incomplete articles|here]]. Feel free to help out by expanding them!
  
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Revision as of 09:34, 21 June 2013

Welcome to the explain xkcd wiki!

We have an explanation for all 5 xkcd comics, and only 0 (0%) are incomplete. Help us finish them!

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Cast Iron Pan
If you want to evenly space them, it's easiest to alternate between the Arctic and Antarctic. Some people just go to the Arctic twice, near the equinoxes so the visits are almost 6 months apart, but it's not the same.
Title text: If you want to evenly space them, it's easiest to alternate between the Arctic and Antarctic. Some people just go to the Arctic twice, near the equinoxes so the visits are almost 6 months apart, but it's not the same.

Explanation

Ambox notice.png This explanation may be incomplete or incorrect: Each of the advices should be explained/discussed individually - Please change this comment when editing this page. Do NOT delete this tag too soon.

White Hat takes the old myth[1] [2] [3] that you shouldn't wash your cast iron pan with soap since it destroys the seasoning. Although it may not be a problem to use soap on you cast iron pan, you should proceed with care with how you treat it.

After telling Cueball this dubious advice, he tells him that is he ever as much as let soap touch the pan he should just throw it away, as that fact alone would prove that he would not be up to taking care of such a precious possession.

From there White Hat runs with it to absurdity and beyond with his next to advices and in the end even Cueball begins to doubt his advice.

The three advices:

  • Never clean a cast-iron pan with soap.
    • Why: It destroys the seasoning.
    • Comment:
  • Apply moisturizer to the pan daily to keep it fresh
    • Why: To avoid wrinkles.
    • Comment:
  • Twice a year, fill the pan with iron filings and leave it in direct sunlight for 24 hours.
    • Why: No reason given, but if you are not willing to travel to a place where the sun shines 24 hours in a day you simply don't deserve a cast-iron pan.
    • Comment:

White Hat proclaims that you should be willing to go to a place where the sun shines 24 hours a day twice a year. Above the Arctic Circle (i.e. the region known as the Arctic which he refers to) there will be at least one day a year where the Sun does not set. So what White Hat implies is that it is not enough to leave the pan with the iron fillings in sunlight for a combined 24 hours (over a couple of days)... no it has to be 24 continuous hours of sun.

In the title text White Hat mentions that if you wish to evenly space the two 24 hours of sun each year, it is easiest to alternate between the Arctic and the Antarctic regions. But this will mean that you have to travel a long distance at least once a year, even if you already lived inside one of the Polar Circles, you would have to travel to the other at least once a year.

It is though implied that you do not have to space them evenly. As he mentions some people just go to Arctic twice a year near the equinoxes. However, according to White Hat, this is not the same, probably because is doesn't lead to an exact six month spacing and the sun would stay very low on the horizon and the sunlight would not be as intense.

In order to accomplish this other scheme it also means that they would actually have to go very close to the North Pole (or South Pole) as this is the only place with midnight sun around the equinoxes. So in principle this would be much more cumbersome than just going inside southern most part of the Arctic region at the summer solstice, and similarly the Northern most part of the Antarctic region at the winter solstice (which will be the summer solstice in the southern hemisphere).

When looking at it like this, it may seem that White Hat actually means that you should always go the the poles, rather than just to a place with 24 hours of sunlight, in order to have the sun high in the sky as well.

Transcript

[White Hat is holding a pan by the handle pointing to the frying surface as he shows it to Cueball.]
White Hat: Never clean a cast-iron pan with soap. It destroys the seasoning.
Cueball: Got it.
[White Hat shift the pan to his right hand and lowers it to his side holding a finger up in front of Cueball.]
White Hat: If you ever let soap touch the pan, throw it away. You're clearly not up to taking care of it.
Cueball: Wow, okay.
[In a frame-less panel White Hat has taken the pan back to the first hand holding on the the edge while he holds his other hand close to the frying surface.]
White Hat: Apply moisturizer to the pan daily to keep it fresh.
Cueball: ...Moisturizer?
White Hat: Do you want it to get all wrinkly?
Cueball: ...I...guess not.
[White Hat has shifted the pan to the second hand again holding it by the handle away from Cueball, while pointing at Cueball with the other hand.]
White Hat: Twice a year, fill the pan with iron filings and leave it in direct sunlight for 24 hours.
Cueball: Wait. 24 hours of sun?
White Hat: If you're not willing to travel to the Arctic, you don't deserve cast iron.


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Lots of people contribute to make this wiki a success. Many of the recent contributors, listed above, have just joined. You can do it too! Create your account here.

You can read a brief introduction about this wiki at explain xkcd. Feel free to sign up for an account and contribute to the wiki! We need explanations for comics, characters, themes, memes and everything in between. If it is referenced in an xkcd web comic, it should be here.

  • List of all comics contains a table of most recent xkcd comics and links to the rest, and the corresponding explanations. There are incomplete explanations listed here. Feel free to help out by expanding them!
  • If see that a new comic hasn't yet been explained yet, you can create it: Here's how.

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