Medstudentwife (AKA Lala) asks me the following question:

When I was a kid, Dad would bring home a dozen donuts every now an then as a special treat. When eating them as dessert after dinner, he would ask us to save the "hole" because he could take them back and get another dozen donuts for free. Now in those days, there weren't a zillion types of donuts like we have today, but how come the donuts he always brought back were honey glazed and not something kwel like chocolate coated ? Was there a "hole" rebate restriction or something ?

Well, Lala, let me first make a few comments about your question before I tackle the tough subject of donut holes.

It seems odd to me that you find chocolate coated donuts "kwel." KWEL, as I am sure you already know, are the call-letters for AM 1070 - The Talk Station for Odessa and Midland, Texas. This, as we all know, is the home of the Morning show with Craig Anderson, Music with Dorilyn, and the ever famous Citizen Watchdog. I can see how this came to your mind, as most people look up to Craig Anderson as a father-figure.

It may be, however, that you really meant to refer to the Dutch word kwel, which Wikipedia defines as:

Kwel is grondwater dat onder druk uit de grond komt.

In het algemeen ontstaat kwel door een ondergrondse waterstroom van een hoger gelegen gebied naar een lager gelegen gebied. De grootte van het debiet wordt gemodelleerd met de wet van Darcy, waarin de doorlatendheid van de materialen een rol speelt.

Again, the connection with your father and donuts is obvious...especially the part about doorlatendheid. That part always cracks me up.

Lies and Shrinks

So what about the holes and donuts? As most people probably realize, your father was literally pulling your leg. He saw your innocent naivete' and felt, as your father, that he had the right to make bold-faced lies that you would believe without question.

Fathers are actually required by law to tell these kind of lies to their children. I have my kids convinced that I used to play the accordion for a Finnish punk-rock band. The reason this law exists is because of the incredible power psychiatrists wield with unprecedented impunity. As another astute writer explained to me:

DO THE SHRINKS RUN THE ENTIRE USA MEDICAL PROFESSION ?

by Justice Lover

Last month's alarming news about the appointment of a shrink as the leader of the American Medical Association (AMA) in the USA should not have come as a surprise to any informed person. It certainly did not surprise the APA (American Psychiatric Association) leaders. They have been working on taking control of the AMA for the past 4 years at least, and in the open : with unprecedented impunity !

Psychiatrists know that the lies we tell our children will give them incredible job-security for years to come. They are bent on using all of the money they make of children crushed by the fact that their father is only a physician (and not an ex-punk rocker Finnish accordion guy) to build an empire of mind-control and take over the medical profession as we know it. I have it on very good authority.

woa06_korpiklaani_04

Juho, live in concert (in case you wondered).

Back to donuts.

The Dark Truth

Despite the impossibility of "saving holes" from a donut, your father was looking after you in ways you cannot imagine. Most people do not realize it, but the hole of the donut is far more harmful to the body than the donut itself.

Astrophysicists have long speculated as to the missing mass of the universe. It seems that the most credible theories of the origins of the universe require a mass that is far more than what is observed empirically, leading to speculation of the existence of dark matter. Some have postulated that black holes are made up of this dark matter, as the mass of a huge star implodes and acquires such gravity that even light will not escape. Yet recent studies by Belgian scientists Duncan and Kreme have determined that donut holes actually contain a large amount of dark matter.

Why then don't donuts weigh 50,000 Tons as would be expected with all of this dark matter inside of them? That is what makes dark matter so mysterious (as seen in the banner above). The theory is that donuts possess a unique chemical compound that mysteriously decreases the effects of gravity. This has to do with the rotation of the donut, as demonstrated by the following graph:

Rotation curve of a typical donut: predicted (A) and observed (B). Dark matter can explain the velocity curve having a "flat" appearance out to a large radius

This can also be expressed as the following formula:

, where G = 4.31 x 10-6 , and ?M? is the mass contained inside of radius ?R?.

I am sure this is becoming obvious to you at this point. If you don't understand it, I am sure Orac can explain it to you. He's the smartest guy that I know.

Dark Matter: Not just for breakfast anymore

Given these obvious scientific truths connecting dark matter and donuts, the obvious question comes up: so what if your dad had allowed you to eat those holes filled with dark matter? The answer is: it depends. Dark matter (as seen in the equation above) is highly affected by the objects with which it makes contact. If you ate the hole in a donut by itself (without the donut), you would immediately take on the mass of a neutron star, and the earth would be destroyed in a cataclysmic nanosecond.

300px-Heston On the bright side, that hasn't happened yet. It is extremely fortunate that nobody has ever attempted to eat the hole of a donut without the donut. Yes, people eat things called "donut holes," but they are actually just bite-sized balls made out of the same ingredients as donuts, and contain absolutely no dark matter (although they are apparently chock full of anti-matter, but that is a different story). Some legislators have tried to pass laws that mandated that all donuts be made without holes (like the typical jelly-filled variety), but this was mysteriously opposed by the gun lobby, so it did not have a prayer.

Eating donut holes along with the donut has several effects. If done in mass quantity, it greatly increases a person's chances of going into law enforcement. In smaller amounts, it just makes you go around all day feeling guilty.

SI-Clancy-Wiggum

Other food manufacturers have studied the possible addition of dark matter to their food. Starbucks has successfully perfected the technique of roasting coffee beans with a coating of dark matter. This is what gives their coffee the unique flavor. The effects of this process on human physiology are plain to see: it creates the overwhelming desire to listen to New Age music and somehow causes the consumer to believe it is perfectly fine to drop $4 on a cup of coffee. Just how it affects the neurons in such a profound manner is still being studied.

Here are some common effects of increased dark matter in the diet:

  • Raising HDL levels (makes RRHDL - really, really high density lipoproteins and YWBHFHDL - you won't believe how friggin' high density lipoproteins)
  • Increases the number of mysterious dark fibers in the muscles
  • Increases pulmonary function by improving alveolar compliance and causing better V/Q matching under stress
  • Shrinks hemorrhoidal swelling

So Lala, your dad clearly had your best interest in mind. He undoubtedly understood the nuances of astrophysics as it relates to frosted pastries. He clearly grasped the importance of moderating the amount of mysterious things in the diet. I tip my hat to a man with such balance and insight.

Oh yes, and I think he just preferred the honey glazed donut to the other varieties.

Thanks for the question!

Be sure to send me more at dr.rob.questions@gmail.com.

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