Over at MEL Magazine, writer Brian VanHooker was brave to tackle one of mankind's most pressing questions: how many s'mores could you make out of the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man if you roasted him alive and consumed his deliciously fluffy flesh like the sweet-toothed cannibal you are? VanHooker enlists the aid of James Hind, a physicist and mathematician at Nottingham Trent University, who took the task way too seriously, as he should have:
Once Hind gridded-up Stay Puft, he made estimations for each part. For example, the hat is about three feet high, with a radius of 10 feet, making it 942.3 cubic feet. As for the head, Hind estimated it was 20 feet high, with a radius of 14 feet, making it 12,312.7 cubic feet. From there, you kinda get the idea, but the unique shape of the torso involved a bit more work. "For the torso," Hind says, "I used an approach based on the volume of a solid of revolution to plot the slight S shaped curve of his side and rotate it."
I've read that sentence 20 times and I still don't understand it, but he did include more visuals, which I sorta understand.
All told, Hind concluded that the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man has a volume of 151,960.2 cubic feet, but we reasoned that his pupils, mouth, neckerchief and certain parts of his hat aren't made of marshmallow, so once those are removed, the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man is 151,772.2 cubic feet of actual marshmallow.
Did I mention there are graphs? There are graphs. And a lot of scientist-ish measurement things that go way over my head. But I appreciate them anyway. Unfortunately, the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man isn't real, so we can't feast on his gooey innards (although you can buy a Stay Puft Marshmallow Man costume and pretend, if that's the kind of thing you're into).
How many s'mores can you make from the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man? [Brian VanHooker / MEL]