Tag Archives: Boy Meets World

A thought experiment about traveling faster than the speed of light

Scientists like to say that the speed of light is as fast as it’s possible to go, but I don’t believe them. Just think about it, say you have two things travelling at light speed. Let’s say I’m one of those things, and that you’re the other thing. So we’re hurtling through space as fast as we can go, and I then I reach out my hand and push you forward. I’ll slow down, yeah, but you should wind up with a little boost, even if you’re just going a tiny bit faster, there it is, faster than the speed of light.


That wasn’t so hard, a pretty basic thought experiment, really. That’s how Einstein came up with the majority of his most brilliant ideas, just sitting around thinking about stuff. He’d be lost up there in his genius brain, maybe he hadn’t yet gotten out of his bathrobe, and people would be like, “Einstein? Einstein! Hello?” but he had an incredible talent for focus, able to concentrate solely on the experiments being carried out in his mind.

Because, come on, you think a regular person could just come up with E=mc2? No, you need to be a genius. I mean, I’ve always thought about coming up with my own genius equations, because they have to be out there, more laws that govern the universe, stuff we haven’t yet figured out. The way I see it is, all I have to do is come up with the right equation, it doesn’t necessarily have to be proved. But once it is proved, I’ll have called it.

Like, how about m=Ts3(D-4)? That seems like a good one. Any math majors out there want to take a look at my work? Remember, any published findings are going to have to include me as a source, and I’m not cheap. Well, if it’s only a minor breakthrough, then I guess we can work something out. I’m not totally unreasonable.

Does anybody remember that episode of Boy Meets World where Eric mistakenly refers to Albert Einstein as Calvin Einstein? I remember watching that as a little kid and almost passing out from laughing so hard. For years afterward, I’d try to replicate the joke, waiting for a moment where Einstein’s name should have been brought up organically, like as the answer to a trivia question, or during a discussion about science.

Or maybe if I was in the middle of a conversation about something intellectual or scientific, I’d throw in, “Look, I’m no Calvin Einstein …” and wait for laughter. But nobody ever laughed. And it always made me think, is the joke itself not funny? Or am I just butchering the delivery, screwing up the comedic timing? Because, like I already said, that episode was great, I couldn’t have been the only one to have laughed.

Anybody ever remember that movie where Einstein is trying to set up his niece on a date? When I was a little kid, it was always on TV, like one of those random movies that they’d play during the day while most of the world would be either at school or work. I could never make it through more than ten minutes, but I’d always think, who thought about this movie? What a lame idea.

I think I got off topic from my opening paragraph, the stuff about traveling faster than the speed of light. But what about the opposite, is there some sort of a universal slow limit? I guess zero motion would be the slowest, right? But what if we’re both standing still and I push you? Then you go backwards. Huh. Can light travel backwards?

All of these question, only Einstein would have been able to really come up with a decent thought experiment worthy of taking on such heavy topics. I guess we’ll all have to soldier on without him, instead relying on Stephen Hawking, he’s pretty smart, but I think even he would admit to not being as smart as Einstein.

Don’t we have Einstein’s brain preserved? I know that we haven’t really ironed out all of those sticky ethical issues in regard to cloning, but don’t you think that, as a species, it might do us some good to make an exception for Einstein? We could create a whole army of Einsteins, entire labs set up where everybody is Albert Einstein, even the janitors, they’d all be geniuses. Think of all of the scientific advancement, the progress we’d make. And if we raise them in America, we won’t have to worry about that funny German accent. Did he have a German accent in that movie? I can’t remember. But honestly, that movie was terrible.

Big words and Boy Meets World

I love using big words. Huge words. Frenetic. That’s a big word. It’s not big like long. I’m not talking about long words. Just big words. I don’t even know what frenetic means. But I don’t really care, because I’m just going to assume that nobody else knows what it means either. So I always feel free to drop it, and other big words into conversation. I just talk really fast, so that way nobody has a chance to even question the word. It’s like, by the time the word registers in everyone else’s brain, it will have been like five sentences ago. So nobody’s going to ask me, “Whoa, whoa, whoa. What was that word you used a while ago? Like five sentences ago?” And I’ll act all offended for having been interrupted. And I’ll pick a different word, a word that’s not too big, something that I definitely know the definition of, and I’ll say it must have been that. If this person protests, I’ll just say that it’s not my fault that you don’t know basic vocabulary. Zing! And nobody will have even remembered what the word was in the first place. I don’t even remember what it was. I should be able to look it up, but I’m not typing, I’m just talking into my iPhone with the Voice Memo app running. And I’m going to download another app and have it turned directly into text. And then another app that automatically posts it to my blog. When people ask me, “Hey Rob, working hard or hardly working?” I always say, “Both.” And then I say something about working smarter, not harder. Gets them every time.

But every once in a while I’ll run into some wise guy nerd that must spend all of his or her time with their nose stuck inside of a dictionary, and they’ll stop me midsentence and shake their smug little head, saying something like, “Nope, nope, nope. Incorrect usage of that big word. Sorry.” And that’s when I take things personally. I say, “Oh yeah?” as a way to buy me some time, to actually try to remember what word I used and in what context I was trying to use it. I probably did just make it up, but I have to think, fast, of an alternate definition, something that fits with what I just said. So after we go back and forth a couple of times, I’ll present my new definition, loudly, and claim that this other person doesn’t know anything. And I’m always the loudest. It usually works.

It didn’t work on the SATs. But who cares, right? What a dumb test. I remember this one episode of Boy Meets World where Cory and the gang were all studying for the SATs. Those two goons, Harley and the fat guy, they must have been in high school for like eight years, and I remember Harley making fun of the group for being a bunch of nerds. And then when the group walked away, probably to study a little more, or to see if they couldn’t get Principle Feeney to give them some advice, Harvey turns to his fat sidekick and says, “You know, one of these years I’m going to see if I can’t take this SOT.” A classic joke from a classic show.

I think I’ve just found a whole new direction where I can take this blog. Instead of coming up with lame stories that don’t make any sense, I’m just going to think back, try to remember all of my favorite jokes from all of my favorite old TV shows, and then I’ll just write about the jokes. This is going to be hilarious. I think it’s mostly going to be about Boy Meets World for a while. When we were little, it was one of the few shows that wasn’t on my parents’ TV blacklist. One time we were all watching Blossom and I think the show had something to do with the word sex. No way. Not in this house! So Blossom got banned, as well as the shows the came on directly before and immediately after. So this meant no Fresh Prince and also no some other show that I can’t remember. They were on too close to Blossom. Better safe than sorry.

One time Shaun and Cory started a band, but they didn’t know how to play any instruments. So they carried around guitar cases, but they didn’t have any guitars inside, just lunches. Shaun shook his guitar case and egg salad started falling out. Anyway, they get drafted into a high school battle of the bands, and it’s a problem because, like I said, they didn’t know how to play any songs or anything. So when they finally get on stage, they’re just holding their instruments, and Cory says to someone in the audience, “Hey, what’s your name?” And I think it was like Steve or something. So Cory starts singing, “Steve, Steve, bo beve, banana fana fo feev,” just like that. And they get booed off stage. But that’s not even the funniest part. The whole episode the group kept alluding to this legendary high school band from a battle of the bands from like twenty years ago. And at the end of the episode, they finally find a tape in the AV room with a recording of the performance. So they put in the tape, and it’s this guy saying, “Hey, what’s your name?” And Mr. Feeney says, “George Feeney,” in his no-nonsense Principle Feeney voice. And the guy starts singing, “Feeney Feeney bo beanie, banana fana.” It was hilarious! I laughed for like ten minutes straight, but not too loud, because I didn’t want to arouse any suspicion from my parents. Who knows what we could have been laughing at? Something inappropriate probably. You know what? Blacklist. I don’t like that Tapanga anyway, with her hippie parents and her always trying to kiss Cory. Just turn on PBS. Wishbone is on. Or Magic School Bus.