Wednesday, 10 September 2008

Well, we're still here

Scientists working in a laboratory deep under the Alps were due to start an experiment about two and a half hours ago which, it was predicted by other scientists, risked causing the end of the world.

I don't understand much of the background, but I gather that protons were to be sent at very nearly the speed of light round a 17-mile-long tube, some protons in each direction. The idea is that the protons will collide, thus reproducing the 'big bang' in which the Earth was formed. The threat to humanity is that the resulting black hole (or holes) will suck in the Earth and it will be goodnight, Havana.

I had assumed that this would all happen in a very short space of time, but I have just discovered that it could take 30 days before the collision occurs. Even so, the law suit which is being heard in Hawaii in an effort to stop the experiment looks like dragging on for several years - always assuming the participants are still around in a month's time. One has to wonder at the point of dragging on a law suit long after the experiment is over, no doubt at a cost of millions of dollars. I suppose the lawyers involved can come up with a number of very plausible reasons.

Meanwhile, back in the real world, the OB has a minor dilemma. A phone call yesterday from her credit card company proved that they had thwarted an attempted fraud on the Dearly Beloved's card, which now has to be destroyed pending the issue of a replacement. She has (had?) only the one card and needs to go shopping this morning. Does this mean I will have to go with her to flash the plastic, or will she go to the bank to cash a cheque as the supermarkets no longer accept payment by cheque? Being something of a Luddite, she always insists on writing a cheque and handing it to a cashier, refusing adamantly to use the holes in the wall to withdraw cash.

Reminds me rather of the old lady who was a customer at one of the bank branches I worked at. She asked the cashier for a note of her balance, wrote a cheque for the exact amount and asked for the cash. She carefully counted the cash, then handed it back to the cashier saying, "Yes, it's all there. You can put it back now."

Brighton Lions operate a rota to provide transport for blind people to their social club - my turn last night. This month it was 10 pin bowling. I was beaten hands down - by a blind person!


(not necessarily your) Uncle Skip said...

How do we know that we haven't already been sucked into a black hole?
My understanding is that everything gets sucked in.

Brighton Pensioner said...

How do we know? Well, perhaps we don't, but it's still daylight here!

(not necessarily your) Uncle Skip said...

What I mean is: Don't black holes suck in the daylight, too?

Brighton Pensioner said...

Don't get me more confused than I am already!