Another spin! Hijinx with water!

VOTE FOR WDTPRSSomeone sent me a link to a video on Youtube with a trick you can do with water!

I think every child over the age of 6 should see this video.

Great fun!  Especially when mom isn’t at home.

Repetita iuvant!


Yes … you moms out there. You don’t have to thank me. I know. I know.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Guillaume says:

    Huge-issimo !!! Thanks a billion times for this video !!!

  2. Rachel Pineda says:

    My kids already think I have eyes in the back of my head…this is going to be fun!

  3. paglia says:

    This is so mean. MEAN.

    My 13 and 14 year old sons are going to find this… Maybe even possibly find this on Fr. Z’s blog… (Woe!) Preparing for minor kitchen flood mitigation now.

    Mean! :)

  4. Eric says:

    The three times he fails he spins it clockwise, the time it works is counter clockwise.

    I guesse it has something to do with surface tension? Maybe hard water would be better.

  5. jeffmcl says:

    It either has something to do with surface tension, or clever CGI technique. Fr. Z, did you actually try this?

  6. introibo says:

    it says distilled is best, so wouldn’t that rule out hard water?

  7. Banjo pickin girl says:

    Hilarious! I can just see people buying distilled water by the freight car load to try this! And what if you scale it up with a 5 gallon bucket for a more dramatic effect!

  8. Bookish says:

    That’s amazing! My 10 and 12 year-old sons will love this and will have so much fun trying to perfect the technique. True, it makes a big mess, but, if the weather is agreeable, it could be done outdoors. In any case, the expressions on their faces when they finally pull this off will remind me all over again why I love being a mother. Thanks for sharing with us.

  9. Elizzabeth says:

    I’d rather he’d turned it into wine… One good reason for being a stay at home mum, with full control of her kitchen facilities! Now where’s that Merlot?

  10. The Egyptian says:

    There are some mothers out there that wish to have a word with you :>)

  11. Banjo pickin girl says:

    Any water will give the same “result.” Note the smiley face at 2:05. Have fun!

    At first I thought it was going to be the old trick where you slide the card under the glass and lift up the glass with the card held on by air pressure. That one is actually doable.

  12. priests wife says:

    I’ll try it if anyone is successful and posts here…

  13. Surely this has to do with the surface tension. The counterclockwise thing is interesting. Do you suppose it is the other way around down under? He mentioned that distilled water works well. Dunno.

    I think everyone should start practicing.

  14. I think I will buy stock in distilled water.

  15. The Egyptian: There are some mothers out there that wish to have a word with you

    And here I am.

    My advice to them is to provide their children with large glasses to practice with. Not small. Large! Be affirming!

  16. thoscole says:

    I hope folks don’t spend too long trying to get water to “suspend” like that. I think the best way to accomplish it is with some clever video editing…
    Have fun!

  17. jeffmcl says:

    I wouldn’t bother trying it. Look at this guy’s resume:

    * Generalist at Dilated Pixels
    * FX artist at Rhythm and Hues
    * Animator at Dilated Pixels

    He’s a heck of a talented animator, though, this looks quite believable.

  18. jeffmcl: C’mon Jeff! Have a little faith! Give it a try!

  19. Eric says:

    Sorry introibo, you are right. Distilled water would have the highest surface tension because there would be no surfactants reducing the surface tension. I was thinking of hard water as the water coming into my house before running through the water softener.

    Anything that would interfere with the hydrogen bonds would lower the surface tension, like salt melting ice or “softening” water.

  20. amenamen says:

    It works!

    No, wait…

  21. ray from mn says:

    Do ya s’pose the cup/glass was coated with superglue? Just wonderin’.

  22. ghp95134 says:

    Hmmmm … never saw THAT before. But in middle school (mid 1960s) I learned to leave the upside down cup-O-water on a table. The same technique was applied using lined sheet paper vice cardboard … leaving a potential mess for Mom to discover.

    –Guy Power

  23. amenamen says:

    I almost had it.


  24. Paulo says:

    Sorry, y’all, but this one only Jesus Himself can manage to do! The rest of us will need clear Jello (or a good CPU!)

  25. Nora says:

    I will send this to my 8 and 10 year old grandsons; they have been you-tubing long enough to work out the trick in no time.

  26. Cosmos says:

    This definitly works, people have been doing it for years; I’ve seen it a million times! Its just a coincidence that the first time YOU happened to see it was on your computer.

  27. JP Borberg says:

    I’m calling troll. Apart from the suspicious nature of some comments beneath the video on youtube, there are a few physics problems with the trick.

    Water sticks to glass and plastic (turn a cup the right way up, put the bottom in a sink full of water then lift it out. You lift out water too, so the water has stuck to the glass). So here, as you lift the cup the nice smooth cup shape is pulled apart as the water in contact with the cup is pulled up with it.

    It can’t be argued that the spin breaks the contact with the cup. If spinning water looses contact with its container, there would be no friction to stop the water from spinning. As water spinning in a cup does stop spinning eventually, there must be friction (and hence contact) present.

    That being said, I’m willing to be proven wrong. If anybody gets this to work let us know.

  28. JP Borberg says:

    Oh, I forgot, air pressure would also stop the water coming cleanly out of the cup. This is a troll.

  29. Eric says:

    How do I post a picture?

  30. Brian K says:

    Oh Father! And its not even the Feast of St. Walericus!

  31. The Egyptian says:

    My advice to them is to provide their children with large glasses to practice with. Not small. Large! Be affirming!

    I can hear my sainted old German grandma Blanch, exasperatedly grumbling in her slightly German voice ack skin um all :>)

    I believe her constant prayer is the only reason I survived my teens and early twenties, she is surely a Saint in heaven

  32. APX says:

    According to MythBusters, this is a myth.

  33. jlmorrell says:

    He spins the cup in a counter-clockwise motion when performing the trick. However, the water appears to be spinning in a clockwise motion when the video gets up close.

    I’m no physics expert, but there’s no way I’m buying this trick.

  34. BigTin says:

    Gave it a shot with with water and had success after a couple tries. To be honest it was hard to see the water, given it is clear and colorless, and I had better results after switching to purple grape juice.

  35. AnAmericanMother says:

    The purple grape juice will look fabulous on a white tablecloth . . . :-D

  36. Robert_H says:

    Shenanigans, says I.

    That said, I’m going to show this to my brother’s kids.

  37. irishgirl says:

    Water in a mold [as in jello mold, not the creepy stuff on the walls, FYI]-very cool!

  38. Eric says:

    After several years of work with my spiritual director we have finally found my root vice.

    We went though all the cardinal virtues and their opposite vices and recently plowed into the theological virtues and vices. Turns out that my root vice opposes the theological virtues of faith and hope and also opposes, to some degree, the cardinal virtue of prudence. After many years, with the help of a spiritual director that I found after searching for decades, we have determined that my root vice is cynicism (the illegitimate little brother of skepticism). Not only cynicism, but more specifically, cynicism directed toward Catholic clergy.

    I was “directed” to fight this evil inclination with my whole being and more specifically to believe anything a Catholic clergyman said even if it was obviously bunk.

    Sooooo, when I came across this video on Father Z’s sight I had to fight tooth and nail against my initial response of ,”what a crock” and go to work figuring out the chemical possibilities.

    After a sleepless night, I have determined that my spiritual director is a flake and fraud of the highest degree. He’s fired. I am starting from scratch with the help of John Zmirak’s new book on the deadly sins. I need someone that takes this stuff seriously.

    Meanwhile I am facing a second sleepless night figuring out “dough girl’s” trick.

  39. Stephen says:

    Eric: I laughed so hard reading that.

  40. JohnE says:

    We finally got it to work! The trick is to freeze the water first. Wish I would’ve thought of that 100+ cups ago.

  41. amenamen says:

    Just be the water

    Advice from Caddyshack

    “I’m going to give you a little advice. There’s a force in the universe that makes things happen. And all you have to do is get in touch with it, stop thinking, let things happen, and be the ball.”

    “Just be the ball, be the ball, be the ball. You’re not being the ball Danny.”

  42. Nora says:

    Update from Lab II – AKA, the daughter in law at FT Benning, homeschooling the grandsons:

    We were thinking logically when we watched it today and said “No, it has to be a trick, right?” Very good computer animation, though. And it led us to what else you can do with water, like make it glow under black lights and freeze an LED into it (I so want to do that one).

    Also, it led us to Elephant Toothpaste. Which you apparently “can’t” do at home, but there’s less combustive versions that look cool. Peroxide (from hair bleach, not from the pharmacy due to percentage), hand soap, and yeast, according to the directions I saw. Fun foam shooting all over the place.

    And corn starch on a speaker. Which DC [older grandson had seen already and insisted on showing me.

    Yes, we had fun on YouTube today.

    …clear thinking being a goal of education, I call it a win.

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