MIT solves the case of the recalcitrant ketchup
Updated: June 4, 2012 11:31AM
In what could be one of the greatest moves since the Reagan Administration tried to reclassify ketchup as a vegetable, those crazy kid geniuses over at MIT have figured out a faster and easier way to get the ketchup out of a bottle.
This promises to be a boon for ketchup lovers, greasy diners and Greek-owned restaurants that offer every possible dish known to man along with 30 senior specials everywhere.
We have all been there, right?
Our burger and fries, or hot dog and fries or whatever and fries, arrives at our table. We pick up the ketchup and, wouldn’t you know it, but it is a brand spanking new bottle. We open the bottle, turn it upside down to pour that red gold condiment onto our fries and … nothing.
We turn the bottle over and look inside.
Sure enough, there is ketchup in there. We turn it over again, this time giving it a few good strong shakes. Still nothing.
OK, now we’re getting mad. We take the bottle, turn it over, and hit the bottom with the fleshy part of the palm of our hand.
And still our fries sit naked on the plate, mocking us.
In a final act of desperation, we take the butter knife and dollop out some ketchup.
The dreaded burger splash
And that’s when everything goes well. We’ve all been there, probably between the few good shakes and hitting the bottom of the bottle, when nearly half the bottle of ketchup plops onto our burger.
I love ketchup, but not that much.
Thanks to the kids at MIT, never again.
They have created a substance they call LiquiGlide. Applied
inside a bottle, the slippery substance makes the ketchup flow out of the bottle like milk.
The example they give for its usefulness is the last bit of ketchup stuck to the bottom of the bottle. That’s probably a better example than mine, but they’re smarter than me. When ketchup is stuck at the bottom of a bottle, you may not even be able to get it out with the butter knife.
My mother’s solution to that problem was to mix some water with the ketchup. (She didn’t go to MIT, either.) That watery portion always seemed headed for my plate. (I put ketchup on chicken, pork chops and meat loaf.)
Originally, LiquiGlide was planned for car windshields, or for preventing clogs in oil and gas lines. All good ideas. But this ketchup bottle thing is a real stroke of genius.
Now if someone could just invent some sort of crunch enhancer, you know, a non-nutritive cereal varnish, something that coats and seals the flake and prevents milk from penetrating it, the world would be perfect.