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Good Questions: Pizza Boxes, Bird Songs, & Pairs Of Pants

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- Every Friday, Heather Brown digs into the mailbag to answer some of your Good Questions. This week, we're looking at pizza pies, pairs of pants and pretty avian ditties.

Twelve-year-old Allie from Brownton asks: "Why do we put round pizzas in square boxes and cut them into triangles?"

"At Punch, we do things how they did them in Naples for hundreds of years," Jenny Nyquist, vice-president of operations at Punch Pizza, said. "When we get our round dough ball, we pound it out by hand and it's easy. When you're rolling it by hand it goes into a circle."

Square boxes are also easier and cheaper to manufacture than round ones. Nyquist also says square boxes are easier to stack and fold when they give them to customers.

And triangles are the most efficient and equal way to cut a pizza.

Hannah from Shakopee wants to know: "Why is it called a pair of pants?"

According to World Wide Words, pants used to be made in two parts. Each leg was put on separately and tied at the waist. Like many phrases, the name just stuck.

Ev from Maple Lake asks: "Why do birds sing before the sun comes up?"

"There are at least four reasons why birds sing early in the morning," Bob Zink, bird curator at the Bell Museum of Natural History, said.

It's actually a question he puts on every one of his final ornithology exam.

First, it's cooler with less wind, so the sound travels better.

Second, insects aren't active in the early morning, "So you can't eat, you might as well sing," Zink said.

Third, singing tells other birds who might want to invade another territory that the bird has made it through the night without being eaten by a predator.

And, finally, female birds lay their eggs first thing in the morning.

"Then, they immediately become fertile," Zink said. "And by singing, they're reminding the mate of the good times they've had and the ones yet to come."


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