Promo for a new author includes this excerpt from her book:
“I saw a commercial where singers used their voices to shatter glass, but the whole thing is pretty much a myth. The human voice isn’t that strong.”
Metaphor, metaphor, metaphor–I know, I know. I get pounded for MY metaphors. But my nit to pick here is that the “strength” of a voice has nothing to do with whether or not a singer can shatter glass and everything to do with the resonant frequency of the material that the sound waves are shattering. They recently went over this on MYTHBUSTERS (don’t try ANYTHING they do at home–really) and showed how a singer shattered a glass. Caruso used to do this all the time, and so did Maria Callas. Ella (Fitzgerald) used to do it for Memorex commercials (“Is it live, or is it Memorex?”), but that was with amplification, so maybe you wouldn’t count that. You do have to focus the sound waves and have them at the resonant frequency.
Next up: the Tacoma Narrows Bridge and differential equations.