In loving memory of Scriptorius
Another story from my Madazine Pending File.
A: Nice weather. It makes one feel good about the whole Universe.
B: Which one? I’m a multi-universe man. But perhaps you don’t dwell on such matters.
A: On the contrary, there are long periods when I do little else.
B: Most interesting. So I imagine you will have taken up a position with respect to our Cosmos and the possible plenitude of others.
A: I have my views, but so much depends on the significance one assigns to the Anthropic Principle, on which I have cerebrated extensively.
B: I think one should dismiss the concept as merely speculative. I am more inclined to cogitate on the Deceleration Parameter.
A: Really? I’ve always thought of that as the sum, to any given level, of an infinite series, leading towards the omega limitation.
B: Ah, well, we are all entitled to our opinions and I would certainly wish to eschew animadversion. However, I would say there is at this stage no sound reason for us to accept that omega is quantifiable.
A: Without desiring to asseverate, I think it is, and I derive that conclusion from the extent to which the ekpyrotic process, assuming the hypothesis concerning it is verified, facilitates examination of the Hubble Constant and the ascertaining of its precise value.
B: I don’t see how the two are connected. I’m persuaded that when in pursuit of the Hubble figure, it is more important to have a clear understanding of the hydrostatic equilibrium of maturing celestial bodies.
A: Indeed? I would place greater emphasis on the wider aspects of the degeneracy of compacting matter. However, to digress for a moment, I have of late devoted some time to questioning whether we shall detect superluminary bodies.
B: Well, many people mock that notion, even as a theory. Still, they do the same with regard to other many other conjectures. Die Menschen verhöhnen was sie nicht verstehen, if I may lean upon Goethe.
A: Ah, yes. The people deride what they don’t understand. I never before encountered the quote, but clearly the German polymath knew whereof he wrote.
B: True, but to return to our theme, I often think that we would make more headway if we could establish with certainty the absolute magnitude of cepheid variables.
A: No doubt, but how are we to do that without sure knowledge of the effects of gravitational lensing?
B: We might well get a pointer to construction of the cosmological distance ladder by considering the sub-atomic firmament in general and quantum indistinguishability in particular.
A: Hmn. The extremes of size. That would raise the question of whether both the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle and Pauli Exclusion hold good in the context of the possibility of quarks being leptonic entities.
B: We can only persevere with our respective endeavours. I’m fairly confident that the TOE – the good old Theory of Everything – is almost within my grasp.
A: My own bouts of lucubration have led me to conclude that I also have made much progress in that direction. In fact I . . . oh, my goodness, I seem to have cut off a piece of your right ear. Clumsy thing for a barber to do. So sorry.
B: Don’t give it another thought. Thanks to Mother Nature’s wondrous bounty in such matters, I have two ears. Give me the severed portion and I’ll get it re-attached when time permits. You might take comfort from learning that I err at times in my work as a taxi driver. Last week I inadvertently delivered a man into a duck pond. Parked too close to it. He was sitting at the front with me. Got out and took a bath. Paid me with a wet fiver.
A: Just one of those things. It’s a relief to know that I’m not the only one who executes the odd professional faux pas. There, we’ve finished now, and I must say I’ve greatly enjoyed the polysyllabicalism of our interlocution.
B: It was indubitably sesquipedalian. Here is your money. You will appreciate that in the circumstances I do not feel it appropriate to offer a tip – the ear thing, you know.
A: Perfectly all right, sir. Mind the step on your way out, and in view of your occupation, may I express the wish that you fare well. Ha, ha.
As the customer leaves, dripping blood across the flagstones, he addresses a man intending to enter the shop. “I wouldn’t go in there if I were you. That fellow knows precious little about cosmology and he’s even weaker on nuclear physics.”
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To live in the hearts of those who love us
shows that we are not dead.
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