There will be an announcement from the scientists at the CERN super collider this morning having to do with particle physics and the search for the mysterious Higgs boson, which supposedly plays an important role in some theoretical explanation of the universe and why things have mass.
I made a token effort to read up on it and quickly came to the conclusion that this is something I will only understand if it is explained in terms so simple that the description completely undermines the complicated science that supports it. Please, put it in some nice words that interest me. If the universe is a hot fudge sundae, is the Higgs boson a piece of walnut, the cherry on top, or the bowl?
Maybe it will all make sense tomorrow, once the world’s best journalists have had a shot at interpreting this scientific press carnival. Or perhaps we should just prepare ourselves to be smothered by a tsunami of profound confusion.
One thing is for sure – there will be a lot of loose talk over the next 24 hours about the Higgs boson as a “God” particle, because God is something we already know how to argue about and misinterpret.
And if that’s not bad enough, some idiot will try to put the thing into a dopey poem.
They’ll bravely attempt it, in newspaper articles
Journalists writing about physics particles.
Laying it out with such logical text
that a monkey could read it and not be perplexed.
And on radio, too, they’ll attempt to explain it
so beautifully, singers will try to refrain it.
On TV they’ll make Mr. Higgs and his boson
As sexy as starlets without any clothes on.
But after the press conference, headlines and fizz
There will still be uncertainty as to what is
the meaning of whatever news comes to pass,
using words that take space and have weight, but no mass,
So beware the quick and the glib and the simple.
It’s more than a dot or a speck or a pimple.
There’s no single term for it that isn’t flawed
which is why it’s elusively named after God.
Name something that defies understanding.