Finally, Harpers put 25 years of the index online, and it’s searchable.

The results for “sex” are… illuminating. Of course, I typed in “bicycle” too:

  • Percentage increase, since 1975, in the number of Americans who commute to work on bicycles: 325
  • Number of bicycles for every car in China: 200
  • Energy, in megawatt hours, saved over thirty-five years by a bicycle rider who does not drive a car: 109
  • Portion of these savings that will be used up over the extra years the biker will live: 9/10

Mega means million and a watt is a unit of power.

A megawatt hour is the amount of power used if 1,000,000 watts are used for 1 hour, or 1 watt is used for 1,000,000 hours. If 100 light bulbs each using 1,000 watts of power are turned on for 10 hours, they will use 100 x 1,000 x 10 watt hours = 1,000,000 watt hours = 1 megawatt hour.

Most electric companies charge for the number of kilowatt hours used. A megawatt hour is 1,000 kilowatt hours.

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