Saturday, January 22, 2011

Conversations about our relationship with the Center

Friday was a weird day. First of all, it was so goddamn cold. It was frostbite cold. I left my house in the morning, and was amazed at the snow on my car, for no good reason. I knew it had been snowing. But I think I've reached the point with winter where I'm just living in continual shock that it's not over yet.

The rest of the day was spent sliding back and forth between errands, gym, grocery store, mundanity, and then up to Akron to see Rebecca and eat dinner, the highlight of which were these dried kiwi chips I picked up at Heinens. So green and addictive, with those awesome little black seeds. I appreciate the kiwi's attempt to keep its seeds more edible for easy distribution. Even the nurse had some. And so we'll take those seeds in our intestines back to Macedonia and Cleveland, and nice attempt Kiwi, it won't work, but still, kudos for effort. I had my first interaction with one of the babies, as she moved underneath Bec's stomach, and that was great. We watched Star Trek and drank sparkling cider.

Driving back to their house, we had a moment of glitter, where all the snow began to sparkle, the stuff falling and the stuff on the road, and the stuff around the moon.
Then Marty and I watched some Planet Earth, and I got sucked in by exposed sea beds in the Rockies and had dreams of climbing alone in places you can't see except by helicopter.
On my ride home, I stopped at a gas station because my car wouldn't warm up in time, and I didn't want to get on the highway till it had, so I bought some weak gas station coffee and added hot chocolate, then sat in the car checking emails until I felt everything was sufficiently cozy. Because let me tell you, I am terrified of deer. Wait, here's the imaginary conversation I had with the theoretical cop who might pull me over.

"So is there a reason you were going only 50?"
"Well, I work with cars for a living, and frankly, I am terrified now of ice, nighttime driving, and deer. And since this is my car and my safety, I feel I should only drive the vehicle at the speed I feel safe at. Which in this case is how a 70 yr old woman with cataracts might drive."

There will come a point in my life where I just refuse to drive anymore, I know it. It will make me sad, because I love driving, and I will drive for hours and hours in the day. But at night? Jesus, I can barely handle it now. You would hate to be behind me, I'm the car always going exactly the speed limit, no more, and possibly slightly less, and you'll get pissed off and send out facebook messages about stupid people who can't drive in the snow, oh my god you live in Cleveland, what did you forget it does this every year? No, I haven't forgotten. In fact, I remember having to drive 2 hours every day just to get home from the East Side, in whiteouts, where there were no lanes at all. So just fucking go around me, okay?

There was a buck that ran across the road on my way to Marty's, right in front of me, and I had forgotten (since I'm a city girl and don't often see deer at all, so it's still thrilling in the way I still get thrilled to see the buzzards, and raccoons, and anything in the wild besides dogs and cats) how big those things are. It leaped across the road in one bound, a few car lengths in front of me, and was just massive. We talked about that too during Planet Earth, how we forget the true and actual size of bears. The true and actual size of creatures we only see on film.

And then at some point, this conversation was had:
M: Oh Bridget, I just read the most horrible article. I'll tell you about it in the car.
B: oh GOOD.
(later in the car)
M: Okay so there was this experiment done, where they shot a photon through a screen, and they found that if the scientist was conscious of the photo being shot, it behaved like a particle. And if the scientist was unaware of it, it behaved like a wave. So the conclusion is that human consciousness is needed to make the universe exist, and it's called biocentrism, that these things only exist as particles when we're aware of them.
B: But see, you tell me that, without reading it, and the conclusion I draw is that the photon must have consciousness, if it's behaving differently under certain circumstances. I don't understand why we would assume it was our awareness having the effect, maybe it's the photons awareness.
M: No, you have to read the article.

And indeed, you should read the article, cause it's not really like that at all, but actually is sort of. Its a philosophy trying to be science, and I don't necessarily have an opinion on it's veracity because frankly I've read that article three times now, and it will probably take me a little more time to get a real grasp on the concept. I know I have a gut reaction to the idea that after all this time dissuading ourselves from the idea of being the center of the universe, I'm repulsed by the idea of heading back in that direction. But that's the simpleton's knee jerk interpretation, I know that's not what's really at the heart of the matter. That's the philosophical equivalent of people arguing crosshairs are okay because they like guns. The really important take away is the possibility. Now my head will be full of kitchens that aren't really there, and buildings that shimmer out of phase when I turn my head, and all sorts of nifty little visuals like that. But somewhere in my mind, even though I know its wrong, will stick this idea of the little Photon That Could, hiding from the apathetic white coats, being tricky.


  1. If I wasn't tired I would really leave a far better comment. I am going to check out the article as I am afamiliar with the idea and have read plenty of pieces that speak to the observation of things changing the result or consequence... some thing like that.

    I had to stop driving before I was ready. Right now I am wondering if it will be safe for me to ride a bike. Damn.

  2. *blink, blink*

    Maybe I need to drink more caffeine and try that again.

  3. I would suggest less caffeine and more wine.


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