Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Particle Physics Made Very Simple Indeed

Physics and I have never got on. Not since the days of school physics, with our teacher, whose name wasn't Mrs Duck but so nearly was. I have cunningly hidden her identity but you may be able to work it out if you're really clever - you remove the vowel in her surname and replace it with the first letter of the alphabet.

Anyway, she made us do lots of experiments with distance-time graphs and velocity-time graphs and ticker-tape trolleys. I'm falling asleep just thinking about it.

However, about a year ago there was a big fuss about physics as some scientists had built the Large Hadron Collider somewhere in Europe with mountains. Briefly, it's a big roundy thing and the idea is that very small particles go round and round it very, very fast and eventually, if things go right, they may find a tiny particle called a Higgs Boson, and this will tell us more about the Big Bang and the beginnings of life, the universe and everything.

Some people were worried that, if it all went wrong, it would create a black hole into which everything would fall. Yes, absolutely everything. The whole planet. As we were all sucked in we'd hear distant cries of "Oops!" from the direction of Switzerland.

Other people said that the Collider wouldn't create a black hole and everything would be fine, apart from all the normal things that aren't fine, which would remain not fine at all.

Anyway, it didn't have the chance to create a black hole, because they plugged it in about a year ago and pressed the "On" switch, and it had barely begun to hum and glow red when there was a kind of little bang and a small phutttt sound and it all stopped.

And it's never started again since, even though they've changed the fuse and everything.

Now then, two scientists have come up with a theory that the reason that this Collider won't work is because it's being sabotaged - - drum roll - - FROM THE FUTURE! Somebody somewhere who knows about time-travel doesn't approve of it and won't let it happen.

Splendid theory. I think it's applicable to other things, too.

There is a reason why I haven't sorted through all the junk upstairs. I keep starting it, and then somehow I just don'f finish it.

My junk-sorting is clearly being sabotaged from the future. Something in the future just doesn't want me to get it all done. Perhaps there's a Higgs Boson or two lurking somewhere amongst the piles of old papers and 1970s clothes. And the future simply doesn't want them to be found. Yes, that'll be it. I'll stop trying to do it and watch a bit of David Attenborough on telly.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Brillian explanation. I knew there had to be a reason why my tidying (of similarly dated items) didn't ever get done. This sounds to me like a parallel universe.

I wonder whether your physics teacher had red hair...

7:50 pm  
Blogger rhymeswithplague said...

Everybody knows that the answer to life, the universe, and everything is 42.

I would be tempted to buy your explanation of tampering from the future except that the collider in Illinois, USA, seems to be working fine. (And if it isn't in Illinois, it's somewhere, I just forget where at the moment.)

9:03 pm  
Blogger Von said...

Well now that's a great explanation from the scientists.Hope you are just tidying your clothes from the 70's not getting rid of them, you just never know when you might want to have a 70's moment.
The future never interferes in my tidying, I wish it did sometimes!
Whatever you do though don't get rid of your towel.

11:03 am  
Blogger Grumpy Old Ken said...

brilliant. Never took physics at school, thats why operating a light switch is the limits of my technology skills.

7:39 pm  
Blogger Kim said...

OMGS you have clothes from the 70's thats awesome if your ever getting rid of them can I have a look through first :p


9:26 pm  

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