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The Lucky Oven
John Denker

A while back my mother told me to set the oven to 350 and turn it on. So I opened the oven door, closed it again, and then dialed in the desired temperature. That initiated a conversation with my young cousin:

−− Why did you do that? Why didn’t you just turn on the oven like she said?

++ Remember a couple of weeks ago, I mentioned that some people are luckier than others? You asked why, and I never got a chance to answer. Well, you just saw the answer.

−− Huh?

++ This is a crowded and busy household. Suppose somebody stuck a plastic bowl or something in the oven, just to get it out of the way temporarily. If you turn on the oven without looking, it will fill the house with toxic smoke. You’d have to evacuate the whole house for half a day. People would say wow, that’s really unlucky. Well, that particular unlucky thing is not going to happen to me, because I check before turning on the oven.

Additionally, if you want to reconfigure the racks for turkey as opposed to pizza, or vice versa, that’s easier to do when they’re cold.

lucky-oven-bowl
Figure 1: Lucky Oven

You and I know some people who take a lot of unnecessary risks. Unlucky things keep happening to them.

1  References

1.
John Denker,
“The Lucky Snipe”
www.av8n.com/physics/lucky-snipe.htm
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