DES MOINES, IA—According to underwhelmed sources in attendance Thursday at Cartwright Middle School’s annual science fair, a lackluster project turned in by seventh-grader Benjamin Collins investigated a method by which a potato could be converted into a baked potato. “By applying heat to the subject, I found that an ordinary raw potato can be transformed into a fully baked potato in as little as 40 minutes,” read a description of the experiment that was reported to have been hastily glued to a poster board during the morning bus ride to school. “I also hypothesized that the application of olive oil and salt would make the potato tastier, and in conclusion, I found that it did make the potato tastier. Recommendations for further research include how a regular potato might be changed into a mashed potato, a cheesy potato, or even a scalloped potato.” At press time, Collins declined to comment on accusations that his research had borrowed heavily from the dinner prepared by his mother the previous evening.
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