Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The great Vegas water bottle experiment, circa 1970, for Lisa's birthday

Water coolerBack in 1970, I was living in Las Vegas. It was, I imagine, much different than it is today. As a third grader, it really wasn't too much different, probably, than anywhere else in America (or at least for me, having grown up in Lake Tahoe, San Jose and psychologically in between the two.

So, to your left, you see a water cooler. Why, you may ask, is there a water cooler in a post about Vegas? Well, for one thing, we had a water cooler in the apartment we lived in. Very convenient things, water coolers.

But first, more background. My mother and I moved to Vegas in the middle of the school year (which started in San Jose). Also there were my sister and her family, including my niece, just two years younger (happy birthday Lisa!). In those good old simple days, we often were left alone.

Which brings me to the water cooler. Being curious, one evening we had the brilliant idea (wonder which one of us thought of it?) to see exactly how many dixie cups of water were contained in one of the big glass bottles (the bottles, in ye olden days were glass, didn't have the fancy handle or protected spout, no those were days when life was bigger and harder!).

One by one we filled the little paper cups and arranged them around the room. Cup after cup after cup. How many were there? Uh, not sure. Not sure, in fact, if we ever finished. Because at some point, we realized that someone might just wonder where all the water went.

So we abandoned the project and started refilling the bottle. Cup by cup. But there was spillage. And so we had to use some tap water to supplement the cups. Yikes. And what about the cups? Try and dry them and restack them.

Mission accomplished, but still, the mystery of how many cups in a bottle remained ... but, I think, we got away with this one!

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