Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Go ahead, you've earned it

Pondering a new bike purchase? Go ahead. You've earned it. Don't worry if your spouse/significant other will shout "You don't need another bike!" Why? The world is going to end, and soon. CERN has been working on the large Hadron Collider for years, and it's set to go online this summer. There have been stories lately in the media about the potential for this thing to create black holes that could swallow the earth. "Or it could spit out something called a 'strangelet' that would convert our planet to a shrunken dense dead lump of something called 'strange matter.'” according to an article in The New York Times. A far cry from The Weekly World News, I assure you. But then, as if black holes weren't scary enough, the Times throws this little gem in at the end of the story:

Dr. Arkani-Hamed said that because of the dice-throwing nature of quantum physics, there was some probability of almost anything happening. There is some minuscule probability, he said, "the Large Hadron Collider might make dragons that might eat us up.”


So go ahead, buy that bike. Cash in that 401(k). Have another helping of pastry. Live every day as if it were your last. This summer, there be dragons.

7 comments:

Yon Saucy Wench said...

Can we get a McMansion? And a Hummer?

Pete said...

Absolutely, dear. Get 2 of each while you're out.

bother yam said...

Maybe it will open up a portal to hell and we'll get to shoot at monsters.

That would rule.

rigtenzin said...

Maybe the dragons will come to collect taxes and you'll be sorry you blew your money on another bike.

the old bag said...

I CAN go get that carbon bike after all.

Thanks! All I needed was a good rationalization.

Lois said...

Okay...I did it! Daughter Alicia & I went bike hunting together...we ended up with Treks. Mine looks like a little kids bike, it is a Navigator 2.5, 13.5 inches, hybrid. Boy, am I happy, my first brand new real bike & I was beginning to think I'd never get one!

Tim said...

They've been looking for a way to say this and they can never get it right. They can't get their scientists on message to say the thing is safe and it is driving their public relations people nuts. They sit in a lab for 15 years studying statistics then emerge into the light babbling about tiny probabilities.
Truth is that the probability of a disaster is very close to the probability of dragons popping out of thin air. So maybe this is a way lay people can understand.