Damn You Newton, Damn You Einstein, And Damn Your Intergalactic Space Trampolines Too: An Editorial on Astrophysics

(John Mayer, Gravity, Continuum)

Gravity–defined as “Something that makes balls drop, sometimes onto peoples’ heads”–is not something normal people think about. Normal people, as a general rule, just accept gravity. Whenever a normal person asks themselves why a lightbulb falls to the floor, they just shrug and go, “because that’s how things are.” They do not wonder why the lightbulb just all of a sudden decided to start moving on its own, directly into the path of the floor. No. Like Republicans, they just say “It’s the law.” Frankly, it disgusts me.

Gravity does not make sense. It’s all ridiculous laws crafted by The Man (Republicans) to keep us poor defenseless liberals down.

Let me put it this way: So you’ve got a ball, right? It’s right there in your hand. You’re holding on to it, and you’re waiting to hear what I’m going to say about Einstein, a famous person who worked with gravity and who is now, let’s face it, completely dead. You are shocked to hear that he is dead, so much so that you let go of the ball.

Now, in a sensible universe that ball would just stay there. You have not done anything remotely abusive or motion-inducing to this ball. You have not commanded the ball to move, and neither has the Earth. There is no good reason for this ball to move. It should remain motionless, like Terri Schiavo, suspended in air due to the laws of inertia, which state that “an object at rest tends to stay at rest, and an object in motion tends to stay in motion.”

But no. The ball decides, by no fault on your part, to move. And it moves exactly the way you don’t want it to move, like a disobedient child. You didn’t want it to hit the Earth, but no, it wouldn’t listen, and look at it now. It hit the Earth. Poor stupid ball. And now it can’t move, unless you pick it up again. And when you do, you’d better hold on to it, or else it will just stupidly fall right onto the Earth again.

“But, don’t you see, Lupe the Lobo? It’s gravity! The gravity made it move towards the Earth! It makes perfect sense!”

No it does not. Gravity does not make any damn sense.

Gravity makes moons go around planets and forces us to go around the Sun, and it makes space capsules catch fire on their way down to Earth, along with its mean little friend the air molecule, and it makes the tides with help from the Moon, which I might add is evil. Gravity is preposterous. It is ridiculous. It should not exist. That damn ball should not move.

But it does. Einstein tells us it’s caused by the impressions made on the fabric of space-time. Einstein, supposedly, discovered how gravity works with his concept of space time. Remember space time? Remember all that crap about the fabric of the universe? Basically, Einstein said that you’ve got a big invisible cloth sheet–the Toilet Paper of the Universe–that all the planets and everything sits on, and these various objects make impressions in the TP. Like, if you were to get a trampoline, and put a bowling ball on it, and then you put a golf ball on the trampoline the impression of the bowling ball makes the trampoline sag, and when it sags it creates a vortex shape that sucks objects down into it, and that’s how gravity works. Try it yourself! I’ll be waiting here for you.

This is nonsense. For one thing, there is no giant invisible trampoline in space. To illustrate this: The Apollo astronauts did not crash through a giant invisible trampoline. The Challenger astronauts did, but that’s because they had a woman on board, and you know those woman drivers, they can crash into something even if it doesn’t actually exist. The “fabric of space time” is just a fabrication of the human mind. It’s like an imaginary friend, or Santa Claus.

Why do objects tug on each other? There is no magic tether between objects that makes them pull on each other, right? I mean, if you sweep your arm underneath a ball as it falls toward Earth, there is no string pulling on the ball that just all of a sudden slices your arm off, right? Try it! Sweep your arm under a ball as it falls towards Earth and see if the magical gravity tether slices your arm off! I’ll be waiting here for you.

(long pause)

This is nonsense. For one thing, there is no magical gravity tether. Gravity is called a “force.” What the hell is a “force”, anyway? A form of energy? An irritating Star Wars reference? I’ll tell you what it is. It’s nonsense.

The Moon is not connected by a magical tether to the Earth. So why does the Moon revolve around the Earth? Gravity? Inertia? Forces? When did the Earth and Moon suddenly get the ability to pull on one another? What caused the Moon to start moving? The Big Bang? Hell if I know. Unless there is some kind of connection between gravity and time, that is. Too bad time doesn’t really exist either. Think about it. Have you ever seen time? I mean, other than on your clock? No, because it doesn’t really exist.

And another thing. Why haven’t we gotten anywhere on the whole entropy thing? I’ve written about it at least two times, and I’d expect someone to care about the plight of the poor defenseless Boltzmann Brains by now. Since the time I wrote about them, I’ll bet at least three, if not more, of the poor dears has been sucked into a black hole. Just think, all those brains gone to waste, just because they aren’t carbon-based organisms. Sentient consciousnesses born into chaos in the infinite blackness of space, and you don’t care, you sickos.

One more thing. I want to give black holes a piece of my mind. I think that black holes have gotten a bad rap, simply because they suck in matter and possibly interplanetary civilizations. This is wrong. I understand that, you black holes out there. Prejudice is never the answer, and I just want to say I would never support persecuting you or your religious beliefs or sexual preferences. Once you go black, you never go back, yadda yadda yadda. But that does not give you black holes the right to suck in anything you want, OK? At least not without doing something useful. Why don’t you reverse some entropy, or something? Y’know, we have all this energy lying around, obeying the Laws of Thermodynamics like sheep. Why don’t you rearrange it and give us some more useful energy? Just a thought.

(P.S. Also, black holes, I meant “give you a piece of my mind” figuratively, not literally; please do not take my remarks as an excuse to suck out my brains.)

Anyway, I hope I’ve given you, my loyal readers, something deep and moving to think about while you’re sitting on the toilet or whatever. And remember, if you ever hear of someone crashing into the Invisible Trampoline in Space, it’s probably a woman driver. Good luck, and God bless America, and no place else.

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