Your Stupid Questions Answered Here

This week I answer the stupid questions you submitted on Ask a Stupid Question Day. I was rather surprised at how much space they took up so I am going to be extremely brief with everything else. Brian Wilson fans take note, here is your chance to ask him a question or just say, "Hey, how's it going?" The very cool deal is if you donate at least $100 dollars to homeless hurricane victims you get a call and he matches your donation. Details can be found here and the offer does expire on October the first. Two movies that have been creating a very large buzz open this weekend and I am also recommending a new TV show, but take warning, every single show I like gets cancelled, the record so far is three episodes and then goodbye, so be wary of getting too attached.

Serenity opens today and I am predicting hordes of fans descending on the theaters. This film has been discussed on at least a gazillion (conservative estimate) message boards over the last few months. In a post about the trailer Teresa Nielsen Hayden said, "It hasn’t increased my desire to see the movie, but that’s because that dial was already cranked all the way over to "max."" She's not the only one; I think the excitement over the debut of this film is causing actual thunderstorms in my area. Don't worry if you didn't watch the original TV series Firefly or read the comics, the film stands on its own. If you like science fiction, adventure, snappy dialogue and terrific characters you will love Serenity.

Opening in selected theaters only is the incredibly lush, dreamy, swoony, surreal, creepy masterpiece from Dave McKean and Neil Gaiman, MirrorMask. I cannot stress the creepiness enough. You will never again hear the song Close to You without a shiver running down your spine. You will be kicking yourself for the rest of your life if you have the chance to go see this movie this weekend and you don't go. Why do you need to go see it this weekend? Because the entire future of this film rests on how well it does this weekend. Its fate is in your hands. Kicking yourself is painful, boring and tiring so speaking solely with your best intentions in mind, you should go see MirrorMask and then you should tell me how you liked it.

Criminal Minds is a brand new TV series running on CBS. It doesn't sound terribly promising. It's about a bunch of FBI profilers who try and stop serial criminals (I mean what else are they going to do? Help them? Now there is a premise for a show but I digress) and the group is somewhat clichéd. There is the suave black fellow, the aggressively ambitious white chick, the geeky super genius kid, and the burnt-out older man who is haunted by a failed case where a bunch of people died. But so far the writing is good and the acting is excellent in spots. Mandy Patinkin plays Gideon, the agent who has post-traumatic stress disorder and he is very good indeed. I'm really digging the weird camera shots and the interesting fades where the background vanishes and suddenly we're in a crime scene. I'll be curious to see if this show develops to its full potential.

And now, for the moment you have all been waiting for, I will answer some of the stupid questions submitted on Ask a Stupid Question Day.

Cam the White Tiger asks, "How do you ask a stupid question?"

This question is almost a Zen koan, much deeper and more philosophical than it looks on the surface. I think the simplest answer is you open your mouth and out it comes. I'll give you a bonus tip, if your ears turn red after you ask and you wish a hole would open in the floor and swallow you up, then your question might be classifiable as stupid.

Tom Alexander asks "Why don't you write a column about weight loss?"

Well Tom, I don't know anyone who is not mentally ill who finds the topic of weight loss entertaining and it's just not fun, so it doesn't really fit the whole Quality Time theme.

sales manager 69 asks, "What happens when you say “hi” to your friend on an airplane who's name is Jack?"

Sales manager, have you ever read a book by Lemony Snicket? If so, do you know how he is always warning his readers that something terrible is going to happen and they should just put the book down now and read The Littlest Elf? The consequences of using your friend's name along with saying "hi" can be so dire that I am afraid I am just not brave enough to list them. Instead we are going to move on to a question about the moon, where all is happy and lighthearted.

Chris_Rocks asks "What's the most valuable element on the Moon?"

Chris, that is a very silly question indeed. Everyone knows the moon is made of green cheese so it has only one element, all of the same value. The market value of Village Green goat cheese at press time was £25.90 for 120 grams.

And finally, Steve asks, "Do fish get thirsty?"

We take ichthyology very, very seriously here at Quality Time so I went right to the source for the answer to this question, and got the answer from the Ontario Science Center. They say that yes of course fish get thirsty and that it is especially important for saltwater fish to get plenty to drink as the process of osmosis pulls water out of their little fishy bodies all the time. Interestingly most fresh water fish use osmosis to get their water although they do swallow some when they eat. One final note, saltwater fish must have some amazing kidneys to be able to drink salt water, get rid of all that salt and not end up on dialysis. Do fish even have kidneys? I know you are wondering and the answer is yes, all vertebrates have kidneys, some obviously harder working than others.

October the sixth is Mad Hatter Day. It is meant to get us through the next six dreary months until we can celebrate April Fool's Day again. We get the idea and the date from the beautiful John Tenniel drawings in Alice in Wonderland. The Mad Hatter wears a hat with the note "In this style 10/6," leading us all to behave in the style of the Mad Hatter and celebrate the extremely silly.