Hurricane Sandy: Get Your Answers Here

Superstorm Sandy hit the northeastern US on Monday and Tuesday with relentless winds, rain and flooding. Millions of Americans are without power and dozens of coastal towns in New Jersey and New York are under siege. The horrendous hurricane has caused at least 30 deaths. Our thoughts are with those affected by Sandy.

 

Answers.com has a new category for Hurricane Sandy Q&A. Here are a few popular questions related to the storm:

Announcing: Answers App for Windows 8

Windows 8 is here. The bold user interface allows for one-click access to the sites and applications you use most — like Answers.com! Visit the new Windows Store and you’ll see our free app among the mix. Add it to your home screen and you’re just a click or tap away from accessing our database of 60 million questions.

In its first release, the Answers app allows for basic functions — asking, answering and editing questions. Explore our 8,000+ categories and browse featured content based on your interests. The tablet-friendly design enables you to create and consume Answers content easily.

Read more about the app and download it here. Don’t have Windows 8 yet? You can download it here. An upgrade from Windows XP, Vista or 7 will cost between $14.99 and $39.99. Once you’ve checked it out, let us know what you think about our app in the comments!

Answer of the week: Why is it called the World Series if it’s played in the US?

Baseball’s biggest event, the World Series, starts this week. The Detroit Tigers take on the San Francisco Giants to win the title of best team in the world. But wait, all but one team in the MLB is in the US. So why do we call it the World Series?

Some have speculated the name derived from the New York newspaper, The World, which sponsored the game. But this myth was debunked by the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1999. Barney Dreyfuss, owner of the Pittsburgh Pirates, deserves credit for coining the term. In 1903, he challenged the Red Sox (then known as the Boston Americans) to a “World’s Championship Series.” It has been held every year since except twice (in 1904 and 1994).

Although the league is US-based, players are scouted from around the world. Countries such as Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Japan, Taiwan, and Cuba are all represented in the MLB. In fact, in the 2006 season, players born outside the US represented 27.4 percent of the MLB.

So considering that the MLB is the world’s premier league for baseball and many players are recruited from outside the US, calling the championship series the World Series is not too far-fetched. What do you think? Does the winner of the World Series deserved the title “World Champions”?

Check out more Q&A in our baseball and World Series topic pages.

Baseball, Coffee & Costumes: Weird Ways to Predict the Presidency

Forget the polls, here are some quirky ways to foresee who will be our next commander-in-chief.

1. World Series 

According to baseball researchers, there’s a correlation between the league that wins the World Series and the party that takes the White House. If the American League wins, it’s more likely a Republican will win the election. If the National League takes it, a Democratic win is in the cards.

2. Halloween costumes

Sales of presidential candidate Halloween masks can foretell the winner, according to Spirit Halloween stores. The more masks sold, the more likely a candidate will win.

3. Coffee Cups

Convenience store chain 7-11 claims that their 7-Election coffee cups are a more accurate predictor of the American vote than professional polls. The chain sells blue and red cups to represent the rival parties and whichever sells the most predicts the winner.

4. The Redskin Rule

If the Washington Redskins win the game before Election Day, the incumbent party will win the election.

5. The Kids Vote

Scholastic holds a mock kids vote every year. And since 1940, the results of that election have predicted the winner every time except twice. This week, Scholastic released the results and the kids picked Obama.

Looks like it’s up to sports to determine the winner. In addition to winning the kids vote, Obama has a lead when it comes to Halloween mask and coffee cup sales. Who do you think will win this election?

Top 10 Pop Culture Halloween Costumes for 2012

Thinking of dressing up as a witch or vampire this Halloween? You’re not alone. Witch, vampire and pirate getups are the three most popular costumes this Halloween season, according to the National Retail Federation. But if you want to look beyond the broomstick, think about costume ideas based on pop culture and current events from 2012.

Here are 10 ideas for pop culture Halloween costumes this year:

1. Gangnam Style

PSY’s Gangnam Style, a rap song that parodies an upscale district in Seoul, South Korea, is 2012’s biggest viral video. Throw on some shades, tuxedo and sneakers and enter your Halloween party doing the horse-riding dance and you’re a shoe-in for best costume of the night.

2. President Obama or Mitt Romney

It’s election day just six days after Halloween. Dressing up as the incumbent or his rival is sure to spark a debate amongst your friends, especially if you bring along a birth certificate or tax return.

3. Big Bird

Everyone is rallying behind Sesame Street’s main personality, after Mitt Romney proposed cutting PBS funding in the first presidential debate. Buy a bunch of yellow boas to fashion a Big Bird costume, and be prepared to entertain the kids.

4. Lost Tourist using Apple Maps

Apple Maps, part of the new iOS6, is notoriously bad. Hospitals are misnamed as supermarkets, bridges plunge into water and entire cities disappear. (CEO Tim Cook had to issue an apology about it all.) So it’s not all that far fetched to dress up as a hypothetical tourist, lost from using Apple Maps. Or, even better, don a black turtleneck and be Steve Jobs rolling over in his grave.

5. Olympian McKayla Maroney

Alright, so you can dress up as any of the Fab Five, or maybe Ryan Lochte if you’re comfortable in a speedo. But our pick for the best Olympian costume would be gymnast Mckayla Maroney of “Mckayla’s not impressed” meme fame. A leotard, tight ponytail and pursed, unapproving lips are all you need for this costume.

6. The Hunger Games’ Katniss Everdeen or Effie Trinket

If you’re a fan of going all out for Halloween, Effie Trinket from The Hunger Games is your girl. White hair, gaudy makeup and outlandish clothing will make you an Effie lookalike. Minimal more your style? Channel Katniss Everdeen’s hunter chic with some cargo pants, boots and braided hair. Don’t forget your bow and arrow.

7. Prince Harry

What happened in Vegas is all over the Internet for this royal. A Prince Harry costume? Hmm, how about boxers and a beer can? Not much creativity is required to mimic the party boy.

8. Justin & Selena

If you need a couples costume idea, try lovebirds Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez. Shaggy hair and hightops for Biebs, wavy locks and boho chic clothes for Selena are all you need. Oh and memorizing the lyrics to “Baby” wouldn’t hurt.

9. Sam Shakusky & Suzy Bishop

Hipper than Justin & Selena? Wes Anderson’s Moonrise Kingdom featured a quirky young couple in love. Wear a scouting uniform for Sam Shakusky, and a vintage pink dress for Suzy Bishop.

10. Snooki’s baby boy Lorenzo

Slather on some fake tanning lotion, pop in a pacifier, and you’re set! Alright, we’re sorry Lorenzo, you’re pretty cute.

What do you think of our ideas? If you have any of your own pop culture themed costume ideas, let us know in the comments. If nothing struck your fancy from this list, don’t worry. Answers.com contributors have your back. Check out the answer to What are some good Halloween costume ideas? for tons of ideas.

Answer of the week: Why are NFL players wearing pink?

Real men wear pink. In October at least. If you’ve watched an NFL game the past couple of weekends, you probably noticed players donning hot pink cleats, gloves, towels, wristbands and hats. No, your favorite team hasn’t changed colors. The league is sporting the feminine color in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month, this October.

Pink is the de facto color for breast cancer awareness, ever since pink ribbons were handed out at the 1991 Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure in New York City. The color has become so ubiquitous every fall, some companies are accused of “pinkwashing” — selling pink products to boost profits without donating money to a breast cancer charity or having limited transparency of where the funds are directed.

All apparel worn by NFL players in October will be auctioned off and proceeds benefitting American Cancer Society’s screening outreach program.

Read more Q&A about the NFL and breast cancer on Answers.com.

Five questions about Vice Presidents

via ABC News

In honor of this week’s vice presidential debate between Joe Biden and Paul Ryan, we bring you five questions about our nation’s co-pilot.

  1. Vice Presidents are much more than second fiddle. But exactly what is the job of the US Vice President?
  2. What are the chances we could have a President Biden or President Ryan? It’s happened in the past quite a bit. What Vice Presidents later became Presidents?
  3. The President earns a $400,000 salary every year. So, how much does a US Vice President make? 
  4. Here’s a hypothetical: Who would become Vice President of the US if the Vice President dies? 
  5. The White House is home for the commander in chief. But where does the US Vice President live?

Bonus question, because we’re curious: What is the origin of the word vice? If you have more questions about vice presidents, ask us in the comments or in the US Vice Presidents category on Answers.com. The vice presidential debate will be held at Centre College in Danville, Kentucky on Thursday, October 11 starting at 9 p.m. eastern.