I will admit that I am a geek and a nerd at heart. It’s not something I’m ashamed of, but rather quite proud of because I believe that geeks and nerds are always learning and appreciate things on a completely different level than most. While some people spend their time watching reality TV, I try to surround myself with reality. I listen to podcasts about space and science. I watch shows about how the mind works and what new discoveries have been documented. I get the biggest kick out of learning something new each day. What really fascinates me is when I can be watching a show or listening to a new or never-before-heard episode of one of my podcasts and something is said that completely blows my mind. When that happens, it usually gets my brain going in a thousand directions and causes me to rethink that which I previously believed to be fact. I’ve had this happen several times recently, and it made me feel a bit inspired.
One of my favorite quotes is, “The universe is not only stranger than we imagine, it is stranger than we can imagine.” Now I know I can think of some pretty freaky stuff, but this is saying the universe is even freakier than that. Every time scientists think they’ve figured something out, the universe sends them a big piece of humble pie and proceeds to show them what they never imagined possible. I love that!
It is common geek/nerd knowledge that it takes light time to travel from one object to another. This is extremely fast, but nevertheless, it means that everything we observe is in the past. Even the light from my laptop screen takes time to travel from my computer to my eyes. This means that we are constantly observing our surroundings as they were, not are. Even my own reflection is a vision of my past self. I guess this gives new meaning to living in the past.
Speaking of the speed of light, it is said that no object can go as fast as the speed of light, but rather it can only approach the speed of light as time slows down the closer you get the target. Having stated that, there is one thing that can travel faster than the speed of light and that is the expansion of the universe. It would have to be able to do so. If that is the case, then at what speed is the expansion traveling? Ludicrous speed?! Infinity speed? Into what is it expanding? Maybe we just think it’s expanding when in fact there is something else going on out there.
Finally, I would like to propose a question to you which I also posed to a very well-known astrophysicist. Dark matter has fascinated me for quite some time. I think it’s because no one knows what it is and it appears to be everywhere. Here was my question – “If at some time in the future we discover what dark matter is, and we are able to control it, and it is dark matter that separates us from the Andromeda galaxy, would we then be able to prevent the Andromeda and Milky Way galaxies from colliding?”
Welcome to my brain where geeks and nerds rule the world!