Thursday, August 23, 2007

Listen to the POP

After finishing off a bag of microwave popcorn last night, I started reading the bag. Everywhere you look, there were warnings and instructions.

This side down, open away from face, do not handle bag from this end! My personal favorite - remove plastic wrap first.

I counted, there are 20 warnings and instructions listed. I'm surprised it doesn't have a "do not pop while operating heavy equipment". Is this overkill? Is Orville that worried about a lawsuit?

There must be a reason for all these warnings. I decided to do some research on microwave popcorn mishaps.

Turns out the city of Seattle is trying to ban microwave popcorn in all city buildings. The city has had numerous building evacuations due to people burning popcorn and setting off the fire alarm. One hospital spent $16,000 in false fire alarms due to people leaving popcorn in a microwave unattended. So, the hospital put a notice on their microwaves that read, "Do not leave microwave unattended; false alarms result in a $500 fine." Clearly, these people aren't "listening to the Pop to know when to STOP."

Microwaving popcorn correctly does take practice. Each microwave is different. Too short a time, you get half a bag of popcorn. However, remember, "it is normal for some unpopped kernels to remain in a fully popped bag". Is it "fully popped" if some kernels did not pop? Hmmm. Cook it too long, and your popcorn is "scorched and burned". This is a much more disappointing scenario. It just tastes bad, not to mention the smell lingers for days.

The last instruction on the bag says simply, "Enjoy!" That is, if you didn't set yourself on fire.

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