Einstein biography/ Walter Isaacson/ The Blogger Wrestles With The Unknown

Blogs or Posts, David's Writing

So here we are in Richmond after driving back from NC on Monday. Yesterday I was playing Lord of the Rings Online when suddenly everything stopped working. The only thing that would come up on the browser was a photo of a Comcast technician. His profusely smiling profile confused me for awhile and then it dawned that Comcast had cut off our internet service.

This situation jolted me out of Middle Earth and back into the real world (yes I can still tell the difference). Not a happy circumstance. So I called Comcast and discovered that they thought they had not received our last payment.

“You don’t pay YOU gotta stay HERE. Forget about the orcs YOU gotta deal with us.” But we had paid them and so they turned the service back on. And nothing happened. My Norton 360 virus and bacteria protection was preventing Comcast from returning me to my home. It now saw Comcast as the enemy. Perhaps it’s a better protection program than previously thought.

What to do? I decided to get the hedge clippers and trim the bushes in the front yard. Hopefully Beth would come home while I was doing this and see the sweat all over my LL Bean t-shirt.

Note: sometimes you have to make lemonade out of your old lemons. And this part of the day actually went very well. It was calm and pleasant out in the yard and the exercise did my chair bound body some good. I managed not to fall off the step ladder and Beth did actually return home while I was in the process of wrestling with a crusty old limb.

Now I only have seventeen projects left to do this month. But they will have to wait because there’s an interesting book sitting next to the sabotaged computer. It’s a biography of Albert Einstein by Walter Isaacson and Zachary gave it to me last Christmas. I think it was his a joke on his part and I must admit it’s was pretty clever move by the young politico.
Albert had a lot of trouble finding a job early in life most probably because he was outspoken and not overly awed by authority. (I wonder if Zachary read certain parts of this book before turning it over to Dad because he and Albert have a few things in common.) But Al was an outgoing guy and did make a few really good friends. One of them helped him get the job in a Swiss patent office where he was able to think and write about physics most of the day (government jobs are the same all around the world). After a short while he produced several papers that shook up the same world quite a bit.

Don’t ask me what he did. I’m not really up on theoretical physics. It had something to do with light being made up of particles or waves. Einstein spent his whole life trying to decide whether light was made up of waves or particles called photons. I guess. Maybe he didn’t spend that much time thinking about it. Maybe he was more interested in baseball. I don’t know. But I hope to finish the book and find out someday.

What do you think? Do you think light is made up of waves or particles? I think light is like one of the bushes I trimmed in our front yard. It was full of little green berries that flew all over the place when I started whacking the bush. But they were also part of the bush before they were disturbed. So the answer is both! When we “see” something we disturb the particles and they fly off into space. Otherwise they are just peacefully sitting there like waves or berries hanging from the vine.

I guess Zachary was not joking around when he put this book in a grocery bag and slid it under the Christmas tree for dear old Dad!

Now where’s my Nobel Prize? Well, to be fair, Einstein offered mathematical data to back up his ideas and I offer the vacuum of space or as it is known around here. . . nothing. But we will let the scientists work out the details. I’m just here to enjoy the benefits that physics have brought us in the 21st century. And that includes the ability to go somewhere where Einstein and physics are unknown.

Although I did see a creature the other day who bore a creepy resemblance to the old professor.

4 thoughts on “Einstein biography/ Walter Isaacson/ The Blogger Wrestles With The Unknown

  1. Hi David,

    I am back from a nice long vacation and feel so relaxed! I actually watched all 5 Harry Potter movies on the vacation (haven’t seen any of them before), I did that before with the Lord of the Rings Trilogy too. I just wait for a bunch or all of them and see them all together – it helps me remember what is going, instead of forgetting the story after years – LOL.

    Anyhow I love the new book idea you have for reading. I myself don’t want to debate what light is made of, but it wasn’t until recently that I began to see Einstein and his work in a whole new light! It all started when I got interested in quantum physics and really put some of Einstein’s words into meaning.

    You know one more thing about vacations, we actually considered driving down to Virginia Beach and vacationing there. We were looking around for a nice place to rent there but then changed our minds, as we have a cottage up north and thought why rent another place when we have our own. Although we have never been to Virginia Beach and are still open to it, but perhaps at another time.
    .-= Evita´s last blog ..Dr. Daisy Sutherland: A Journey Of A Balanced Diet and Exercise =-.

    1. Welcome back Evita. I hope you will write about your vacation and share some photos. I really enjoyed the article you wrote recently about the Swine Flu epidemic. I guess we will find out a whole lot more about it when flu season rolls around. Say a prayer for all the children and the elderly.

      So happy to hear you mention Virginia Beach. I hope you will let us know if you ever decide to go there. We would love to hang out with you and watch the surf and surfers. Hopefully they will finish working on our building in the next few months so we can get down there.

      Thanks for your comments as always.

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