Today is gonna be a bit of a ramble, folks… Enjoy!
So, I was watching a documentary today with my mum, called ‘How long is a piece of string?’ This guy, Alan someone, wanted to know how long his silly piece of string was, and he went to all these mathematicians and physicists, who spewed a load of spiel about atoms and infinity, and ultimately, did not answer his question. (This is going somewhere, promise.)
Basically, I started to feel really uncomfortable when confronted with the principles of ‘infinity’ and such. I don’t like knowing something can go on forever, why does it matter to me? I’m just a little finite being, and frankly, I don’t care about things that are too tiny or massive for me to see. I felt the same way a few weeks ago, watching a documentary on black holes, which is the opposite end of the scale. A piece of string, stars, a cat (I’ll get onto that in a bit), these are just words we create to name things. Nothing really matters apart from the tangible things around me.
Maybe I’m broken? Humans are meant to have this unquenchable thirst for knowledge, which is why we have mathematicians and physicists and other poncy gits (okay, I know they aren’t all poncy gits, but I’m just drawing on BBC documentaries here) to find out ‘the secrets of the universe’. Thing is, I don’t have that need to know everything. It actually scares me; once I start to think about things that are beyond anything I can perceive, I literally panic. I get this anxious feeling that spreads through me and tightens up my stomach muscles, like I’m getting ready to attack a predator. Weird, no?
There was this theory on that string program today: Schrodinger’s cat. A photon may or may not hit a receiver. If it does hit it, a drop of poison will be added to the cat’s milk, and the cat will die. If it doesn’t, nothing will happen and the cat will live. However, photons are not fixed, and are in multiple places at the same time. Consequently, the poison will both be added to the milk, and not be added to the milk, as the photon is recorded on the receiver and also elsewhere and not recorded, which means the cat is both alive and dead. One word for you there: ARGGHHHH!
Stupid bloody paradoxes, they continue to perplex me. If a tree falls in the woods with no one there to hear it, does it still make a sound? Well, it creates vibrations in the air, which a human would perceive as a sound, but if there’s no one there to hear it, is it still a sound? I say yes, as it’s still effectively the same phenomenon. My mother says no, as a sound is merely a perception of some measly vibrations in the ear. Please excuse me while I shoot myself.
See, I don’t really care about this philosophical bullshit, but once I start thinking about it, I get so sucked in and so anxious that, if I thought about it enough, I think I may go crazy and kill myself. So now you know slightly more about what goes on in my head. Maybe I think like a totally normal person, maybe I’m a tad psychotic. But who knows. :]