Big doings in CERN today! After thirteen years the final three pieces of the Large Hadron Collider will be lowered into place over the next months. Next summer the circular race of subatomic particles will begin with much smashing and breaking apart it is hoped to show the reenactment of the first trillionth of a second, and earlier of the beginning of the universe, as we know it. So much is riding on this for the physics community, if nothing happens – nothing new- this research may well go the way of manned missions to the moon, and that would be unfortunate indeed.
The hope is to find the Higgs boson (which conceivably endows other particles with mass, aka the God particle) or something entirely new that defines the nature of mass. The never-ending quest for just what it is that constitutes Dark Matter is one of the major questions waiting to be answered. There is even the postulate that the reactor experiments will reveal new dimensions of space-time. So the String Theory boys and girls can polish off their blackboards, and Supersymmetry gets a shot at the golden ring. Personally I will be overjoyed if some light can be shed on quantum gravity and the graviton. That will be a tremendous boon to the possibility of long-term space travel. It is all part of the dream of finding GUTS (grand unified theory of everything) or they could end up chasing their collective highly educated tails, which would call for the theory guys to go back to the blackboard. It is a huge undertaking both in terms of the sheer size of the machines being used and the significance of the data they will or will not find. Exciting stuff!
Don’t you love it when you buy something and it exceeds your expectations? I bought a fairly small external hard drive before leaving the West to back up stuff – at this point I would love to tell you it was my works in progress which while true is not the real purpose. It was to transport my Law and Order (the original, CI, and SVU) episodes and Battlestar Galactica, seasons one and two! There you have it. I find L&O the best writing aid. Once you have seen the episodes there is no need to pay attention, and the cast of characters is very comforting. When I went to Boston for a visit in March I downloaded from I Tunes like mad. I am so pleased the external hard drive continues to hold it all and ask for more. For some reason we cannot download from I tunes here. It stutters and staggers and takes hours and then is out of sync. I don’t know if it is distance, does that make sense? Or our connection, but it is DSL and fairly fast? It is a mystery, one to which I would love a solution. Meanwhile I watch past seasons over and over with much joy.
If you have not read Not Even Star-Crossed, Just Unlucky today, stop reading this and go! Funny, endearing stuff that is!
An unfortunate smell led me to open the front door and stick my head just around the frame. Because I am clothed in only shorts and tee I was unable to step outside and ascertain what was going on. Never fear, my bedroom on the second floor has a handy window just above the bed, double cased in glass doors and then wood doors, giving me an eagle eye view of the street down below, quite handy that is. As I looked down the first scenario I beheld was three Moroccan girls having the same reaction to a roach that had run out of one of the holes (coming up hold on) that I would have to a large rat or snake of any size. Instead of smashing the bloody thing so that it cannot reproduce they “ekk!”ed and jumped up onto the small sidewalk and into the doorway. I am confused about this behavior. Did they not want to get the bottoms of their shoes soiled? Did they fear the roach in a rabid capacity? Is there a prohibition against killing roaches in the Oudaylas?
On to the source of the unfortunate smell – there are seven chaps standing about in those official type overall looking outfits of green and black. Two are knee deep in the two holes now present in my little cobblestone street! Between the two holes are piles of long metal rods of some sort and one of the chaps is screwing them together to make a longer extension. Do we have some sewer issue here? Are they going to give the pipes a high colonic? Will the smell get worse? Are there going to be any explosions? No, there will be tea. One of the neighborhood ladies has just brought out a tray of tea and another of bread and cheese for workers whose jackets I noticed are marked with S.O.S. hmmm…
Apparently not sewage, but the gutter refuge makes its way through there and out to the sea. The chaps in the holes (with gloves!) are pulling out what looks like handfuls of wet grass (?) and smells like sour seaweed. The Oudaylas version of cleaning out the gutters, of which we have none.
After tea: They finished right up (still not really clear on what was going on), pulled out the rods, replaced the stones, and washed down the street. Bada bing bada boom. Very efficient.
M.C. has developed the habit of traveling from the keyboard of my laptop to the keyboard of Q’s laptop. He finds this a satisfactory position to observe goings on and I suspect it warms his bum. The result for us is slowed work pace, some really odd sounds from the computers, and many laughs.
Cleaning out M.C.'s litter box, yet again, it occurs to me that not since the days of potty training of Q have I uttered the phrase, "Nice formed stool!", so often and with such pleasure.