Page 2 of 2 FirstFirst 12
Results 31 to 39 of 39

Thread: Better metaphor than "hot enough to melt lead"

  1. #31
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    The Valley of the Sun
    Posts
    9,876
    Is it called a metaphor if it's literally true?

  2. #32
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    14,483
    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
    Is it called a metaphor if it's literally true?
    Youíre right, it is not a metaphor. Nor an analogy. Itís just an interesting fact.
    As above, so below

  3. #33
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Posts
    8,762
    'As hot as a tandoori oven' is a simile. And a useful one, although you need to qualify it quite a bit before it is accurate.

  4. #34
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    19,811
    "As hot as the hottest tandoori oven."
    I personally prefer "as hot as" or "hot enough to melt [x]" to "hot enough to boil [x]". The problem with boiling is it's very sensitive to ambient pressure, whereas melting is much less affected. So while Venus is hot enough to boil sulphur at one atmosphere, it's not hot enough at Venusian atmospheric pressure. And if one chooses a substance that will boil under Venusian surface conditions, the effect is less impressive if people mentally refer back to one standard atmosphere.
    There's potential for confusion, there.

    Grant Hutchison

  5. #35
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    5,933
    Melting points are a bit more suitable than boiling points. They're not unaffected by pressure, but the effect outside of a gas giant or planetary core is less dramatic.

    "Just 200 K short of being hot enough to melt aluminum" is at least accurate and avoids giving the impression that it'll melt everything, but rather awkward.

  6. #36
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    The beautiful north coast (Ohio)
    Posts
    50,094
    Honestly, I don't see why it matters. The average person has as much feel for how hot it needs to be to melt lead as they do for boiling sulfur or using a tandoori oven or melting tellurium or the temperature of a car engine - in other words, none what's so ever.

    How many people have actually ever melted lead or used a tandoori oven?

    It is like all these size of objects analogies (like for asteroids) "as big as Texas" or "as big as Rhode Island" (I don't know what they use on other continents). People don't have an intrinsic feel for how big Rhode Island is either.
    At night the stars put on a show for free (Carole King)

    All moderation in purple - The rules

  7. #37
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    19,811
    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    Honestly, I don't see why it matters. The average person has as much feel for how hot it needs to be to melt lead as they do for boiling sulfur or using a tandoori oven or melting tellurium or the temperature of a car engine - in other words, none what's so ever.
    I agree. But we're here because the OP asked the question. If we only ever got involved in answering questions we thought were going to produce a net gain in human understanding, this forum would be even quieter than it currently is.

    (By the way, I originally read your second para as "How many people have actually ever melted lead using a tandoori oven." That seemed a pretty exacting standard.)

    Grant Hutchison
    Last edited by grant hutchison; 2020-Oct-26 at 10:33 PM.

  8. #38
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Falls Church, VA (near Washington, DC)
    Posts
    9,036
    This thread reminded me of something similar from my youth years, and I posted it over in Off Topic Babbling.

  9. #39
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    The Valley of the Sun
    Posts
    9,876
    Hot enough to inspire "hot enough" discussions.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •