Friday, April 11, 2008

A Close Encounter With a Black Hole

My mom’s best friend is a dentist named Paula. She lives in Claremont, California with her husband, Dan, who is an artist. We went out to her fantastic house for dinner last Friday night when my mom was out here Rambo Decorating my new home. I have not had so much fun nor laughed so hard in a long time. To get an idea of who they are – take a look at Dan’s glasses. He decided the whole blending bi-focal thing wasn’t working for him so he had his optometrist make special glasses for him – the magnifying element flips up.

Paula suggested I attend a lecture on the Black Hole – set to happen last Wednesday at 7:30. At six I headed over to Pasadena to what I thought would be a little lecture at a little auditorium at a little college. It was Stephen Hawkings’ speaking on the Black Hole and it was a zoo! Fantastic!

Since I returned to my lovely home (now Rambo Decorated) in Santa Monica last night, I have been reading up a bit on the life and work of this British theoretical physicist. Throughout my musings, I have run across a number of his famous quotes that are both funny and insightful. He is widely considered to be among the most intelligent people living today. Here is what he has to say...

"Einstein was wrong when he said "God does not play dice". Consideration of black holes suggests, not only that God does play dice, but that He sometimes confuses us by throwing them where they can't be seen."

"I have noticed even people who claim everything is predestined, and that we can do nothing to change it, look before they cross the road."

"My goal is simple. It is a complete understanding of the universe, why it is as it is and why it exists at all."

"I find that American & Scandinavian accents work better with women." In response to a question about the American accent of his synthesiser.

"Someone told me that each equation I included in the book would halve the sales. In the end, however, I did put in one equation, Einstein's famous equation, E = mc2. I hope that this will not scare off half of my potential readers."

“My expectations were reduced to zero when I was 21. Everything since then has been a bonus."

"To show this diagram properly, I would really need a four dimensional screen. However, because of government cuts, we could manage to provide only a two dimensional screen."

"Life would be tragic if it weren't funny."

"The whole history of science has been the gradual realization that events do not happen in an arbitrary manner, but that they reflect a certain underlying order, which may or may not be divinely inspired."

"Eternity is a very long time, especially towards the end."

I got my driver Ricky to take some photos. Enjoy!

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