in which Megan defies quantum physics

November 9, 2010 at 10:33 am Leave a comment

It’s no secret that I have a love affair with words. 

Last night, we DTR’d.  (For those unfamiliar with this term, it means we “defined the relationship”).  You see, I went to a Word Party last night.  We sat in a cozy Panera-ish shop called Irvings, read some of our favorite pieces of literature, and talked about words.  (This is what writers do.  We talk about words.  And then we write about talking about words).  Nerdy?  Maybe.  Fun?  Definitely.

One of the lighter topics of the evening was putting our relationship into “facebook status official.”  One girl was “in an open relationship”.  Two others were “married”.  My status is “It’s Complicated”.  (Because there have definitely been times when they’ve let me down, when I’ve been annoyed with them.  But right now we’re in the hey!  I think I like you but I have no idea where this will go stage). 

We read our favorite passages and poems; I brought my all-time-favorite Billy Collins poem “The Lanyard“.  Emily and I both confessed that we’re not voluntary poetry-readers/lovers, but I do really like Billy Collins.

Anyway.  The topics also went down all kinds of different paths, what with the people there being ever so much more brilliant than I.  We went down the road of existential philosophy for awhile (still not sure what that means), and linguistics, and quantum physics. 

That’s where things got interesting.  I love deep conversations, and I will go toe-to-toe with anyone on theology for as long as they like.  And if I don’t know anything (which is usually the case), I’m happy to listen and learn.  But I suppose there are some times when the conversation is so far beyond you that it’s hard to understand most of it. 

Alex and Amanda were talking about the absolute being descriptionless because it encompassed the subjective, and then physics finding that at some part of the universe things simply stop existing in a finite manner; they both exist and don’t exist.  Or something nonsensical like that. 

Then I came home and was attempting explaining to explain this to my friend (who is one of those rare people who can love and appreciate both English and science and see how they are linked).  She tried to help me with the physics part by explaining the whole cat-in-a-box thing.  Basically, one of the core (truths?  assumptions?  points?  thingies) of physics is this catch-22, whereby you have a soundproof box and a cat.  The problem is you’ll never know if the cat is still alive or if its dead because if you open the box to check, that will kill the cat. 

I didn’t really get the Important Quantum Physics Implications of this.  (For the record, I don’t think the experiment has actually been done, but I’m not sure).  But I was going off more with worries about the cat.  “Well, how do they feed it?  And then either way you’ve killed the cat because you can’t feed it, so who cares if it’s currently alive or dead?  You killed it!”

Whereby my friend had no choice but to laugh at how much I wasn’t getting it.

But there you go.  Physics doesn’t matter.  The point of this conundrum, in my limited view?  Either way you’ve just killed the cat.   Which is stupid, not to mention inhumane.


Entry filed under: college, random nonsense, words.

there are a few things i’m good at wednesday wisdom {from unusual sources}

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