Thursday, February 18, 2010

A Few Things I Figured Out Today

There is a poster on my wall with information about nuclear fusion and plasmas.

Plasmas are the fourth state of matter. I don't know much else about them, because I usually don't read that poster, but this morning while I was fixing my hair I started reading it and I noticed something.

There is a chart on the poster that has examples of plasmas. Most of them are unfamiliar and scientific-sounding, but one of the first ones on the list is Fire. Beside it is a list of the first three states of matter - gas, liquid and solid.

All of a sudden something clicked in my mind.

The Greeks believed everything was made up of four elements - fire, water, air and earth. They weren't quite right with the element idea, but if you look closely at their list you will notice something. Fire is a plasma. Water is a liquid. Air is a gas. Earth is a solid.

The Greeks were right. Everything is made up of those four kinds of matter - though maybe not fire, water, air and earth in particular. A substance must be either a plasma, liquid, gas or solid to exist physically.
The other thing I figured out was Global Warming. The people who are worried about it just need to take a deep breath and review the Ecology chapter of their biology books.

Global warming comes from the greenhouse effect. The greenhouse effect is where gases - mostly carbon dioxide - are trapped by the atmosphere to heat the earth so that we do not become a freezing planet where life cannot be supported. In global warming, carbon dioxide just keeps stacking up against the atmosphere and it can't escape. It heats the earth more than necessary. Ice caps melt and the sea rises.

Carbon dioxide can be taken out of the air in two ways. Plants can breathe it in and turn it into oxygen. Or... it can dissolve in the ocean.

Ergo: if there is more carbon dioxide, the earth heats up. But if the earth heats up, the oceans rise. And if the oceans rise, carbon dioxide is dissolved in it.

I just solved a mystery! Global warming is not a problem. It's part of the earth's natural cycle.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

If You Give Leonardo da Vinci a Paintbrush...

If you give Leonardo da Vinci a paintbrush, he will want to paint the universal picture.

When he figures out he can’t do it, he will be sad and need a handkerchief.

When you hand him the handkerchief, he will notice that the way you are holding it makes it look like a face. He will immediately cheer up and ask you to hold it just like that while he sketches it.

After a while he will get tired of drawing the handkerchief and start drawing you instead. You will not notice until he asks you to look at the picture. Since you were not paying attention, you look like you were staring off into space. (People for years afterwards will wonder why you have that strange smile on your face.)

Since he finished the picture, he will be very happy. But since he is so easily distracted, he will forget why he is happy, and eventually think it is because he has figured out how to unite the universal and particular. You will ask him to explain it, because it sounds interesting. He will try to explain, but he will not be able to, because he does not know how to unite the universal and particular without bringing God into the matter, which he does not want to do. He will get very confused and confuse you too, and the two of you will sit and be confused together for a while.

After a while he will forget why he was confused and want to paint a new universal picture. And if he tries to paint a universal picture, he’ll need a paintbrush.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

New Year Resolutions... or Whatever They Are

This is my first time actually writing down a New Year Resolutions list, so it's not quite so polished and complete-looking as some of the lists out there....

  • Finish writing the unnamed book that looks as if it will be a prequel to an already-planned trilogy.
  • Play Charlotte in Charlotte's Web at one or more productions (and hopefully do well...)
  • Keep time spent on the Internet to a minimum.
  • Learn to speak Welsh, complete with grammar.
  • Learn to sing "Almost There" from The Princess and the Frog.
  • Participate in a Shakespeare play.
  • Learn to drive.

Cornflower saw me and she wants to put down her resolutions here too, so here they are:

Bake a cake.
Read books I haven't read.
Catch up on math.
Have my friends over.
Go to the movies!!
Learn "Fur Elise" on the piano.
Give my sisters hugs.