Saturday, 13 September 2008

We're not dead after all.

Yes, we have reached the weekend without dieing, as if there was more of a chance of us dieing this week than any other week. I am of course referring to the Large Hadron Collider (lovingly known as the LHC) a few hundred miles under the Alps at CERN (which is an acronym for something French).

After however many months/years in the pipeline (or should I say accelerator tube haha...), the LHC was finally turned on for the first time on Wednesday, which you already known unless you have been living under a rock for the past week, or maybe in Wales. The LHC fires 2 streams of tiny particles opposite ways round the accelerator, colliding them at super high speeds (which just sounds like a excuse to cause a big explosion to me. All in the name of science eh?)

For some odd reason every person on their dogs got it into their heads that the LHC was going to caused some apocalyptic Black Hole that would suck us all down into the depths of nothingness. Apparently the result of these collisions will (the scientists hope) be a detection of a particle called the ‘Higgs Boson’ without which our current model about the universe will not work (one would have thought that they would have tried to find this particle before arriving at theory that depended upon it, but that may be my pathetic little philosopher/historian’s brain talking). However some people seem to think that a micro Black Hole will be created as a result of the collisions. Obviously this didn’t happen, and was never likely too.

This did not stop all the brilliant comedians from here to Azerbaijan making doubtlessly hilarious jokes about the end of the world. For some reason these peoples decided that, like wine, jokes get better with age. Unfortunately these people are deluding themselves, because after the first time a few months ago when we thought the LHC was being turned on (but it was delayed because, predictably, a technical problem) the joke lost its limited wit.

This fit of absurd hysteria had a rather more sinister (although still rather amusing) outcome. In India one woman decided that, because the world was about to end she might as well commit suicide… a Darwin Award is due methinks. In a slightly less tragic event, most of India (and I suspect the rest of the unenlightened, and most of the enlightened world) decided to flock to any holy place they could think of to pray madly to ‘im upstairs in the home that he could prevent the impending apocalypse. Doubtless all the begging prevented the apocalypse, further proving that it works.

The most ironic thing about the hilarious display of human stupidity was that the clever men at CERN did not even collide any thing this time around. All they did was to send one stream of particles, one way round the accelerator at a fraction of the speed that they could attain. They will not start colliding for a few months yet, and when they do the world will end. We’ll all be sucked into the inevitable black hole caused by the senseless and absurd barrage of jokes about the world ending.

No comments:

Post a Comment