Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Cosmological Confusions

Last night on the radio he asked us a question.
Hard to believe it's all happening behind
these innocent clouds.
Do you believe in parallel universes?
Well, Professor Cox, this is my answer:

My brain is very small.
It can’t conceive of infinity,
Nor black holes that suck and distort matter.

It is so small that some thoughts make it panic.
Like the one about the Big Bang
The way it expanded the edges of the universe.

You see, if there are edges then there must be more beyond
But how can it truly go on forever?
And now you say there are parallel universes.

My brain is becoming clammy.
Does a parallel universe consume more space then infinity?
Steady on, Prof Cox!

You’re asking me to believe what I don’t understand
To accept theories without facts.
You’re asking me to have faith
And everyone knows that’s not science.

[BBC Radio 4, The Infinite Monkey Cage, with Brian Cox and Robin Ince]

I love listening to The Infinite Monkey Cage, even if I don't always understand it, but then Brian Cox could say anything and I'd hang on his every word!

[Writing Den Update: Mr A has finished the structural alterations and decorating that I blogged about here. The walls are a pink/beige liquer colour. We've ordered a beige carpet and curtains with a deep red flower pattern.  I'm searching for rugs and cushions to complete the deep red theme with a splash of added green and I hope to be working up there very soon! And yes, there will be an opening ceremony and photos!]


  1. I love to listen to theories on the parallel uniververses. That means I'm a lawyer in one, a teacher in another, and a flight attendant in another, and an actress in yet another one. And in this one I'm a hairdresser/writer. How cool is that? So that would mean I'm doing everything I ever wanted but in different universes.


  2. I love listening to Brian Cox - he has such a warm and reassuring voice. I start off understanding what he's saying, but after about 3 sentences it just becomes a really relaxing lullaby.

    I'll have to check out the Infinite Monkey Cage though.

  3. Ah yes - Brian Cox - how is it possible to talk about things that no one but the few understands and still be so entertaining? (Don't suppose he's share that secret with us!)

  4. Love these types of questions - they're definitely brain breakers! I watch a lot of sf so the thought of parallel universes is one I love! :)

  5. if there are parallel universes, does that mean we have more opportunities for book sales? Hmm, food for thought.

  6. Love the poem. It's so true that certain aspects of science simply require faith to be understood.

    But shhhhhh! Don't tell the scientists I said that.


  7. We'll have to compare notes...we are in decor mode over here at thefeatherednest as well.

  8. Since I have a series with a parallel universe, I guess I like at least the idea of them. lol

  9. I used to be interested in the universe and things I couldn't comprehend, but these days, my brain just wants peace and quiet. I don't know why, but that's the way it is.

  10. ooh. I do love the concept of parallel universes. :D

  11. I love. Brian Cox too but don't understand any of what he says. Best not too think too much I think. Your writing den is sounding lovely I bet you can't wait until its finished.

  12. Fun. I agree, too, sometimes. I find it all fascinating, but it makes my brain hurt.

  13. I like your poem, and yes, I enjoy listening to Brian Cox. He's a smart guy!

  14. Is it ever possible for finite minds to fully grasp the concept of infinity? By their very definitions, it would seem not. Maybe the realization and acceptance of our limitations in understanding the mysteries of life is the true beginning of faith.

  15. Hi Ros, it's really interesting stuff, even if we can't fully comprehend it!
    Duncan In Kuantan

  16. great poem....and a parallel universe is mind blowing.What if? That's what I keep thinking....

    I've always found science, physics etc difficult, and I'm sure that if I had lived in the sixteenth century I would have settled for the earth being flat.

    On a tangent....I loved the Dr Who series where there was a aparallel universe.....

  17. I loved the poem but I've never heard Brian Cox. You all sound like a serious set of panting radio-wave stalkers!

  18. I enjoy shows like this and movies on the topics. I even like to think on these things sometimes, but not too hard or too long. You did the verse nicely.

    Wrote By Rote

  19. Hi Shelly, that's all very well but where is all this happening?!?

    Hi Annalisa, he has that effect on me too.

    Hi Jo, I think his secret has something to do with sex appeal.

    Hi Jemi and Donna, having a parallel universe in sf is fine but where are the universes in real life?

    Hi Joanne, I suspect the same books are being sold simultaneously... or something like that!

    Hi Misha, thanks. It'll be our secret.

    Hi Delores, what's your colour scheme going to be? I'm really bad with colour-choosing.

    Hi Inger, I used to ruminate on difficult issues much more than I do these days. Does this mean we're running out of spunk?

    Hi Nutschell, it's not the concept that worries me, it's trying to work out where they could be that's my problem.

    Hi Anne, he's cast his magic spell on you too, eh?

    Hi Shannon, my brain's hurting just trying to respond to all your comments!

    Hi Sherry, I suspect that if he was just a smart guy we wouldn't all be fussing over him.

    Hi Susan, an interesting line of reasoning. I certainly accept my limitation in understanding.

    Hi Duncan, glad you enjoyed it.

    Hi Bridget, you mean the earth isn't flat?!?

    Hi Lizy, never heard of Brian Cox? He's a high-profile and rather attractive young Professor.

    Hi Arlee, thanks. It's certainly best not to think for too long about it all.

  20. It's all an exciting (and scary) mystery to me. Your den sounds gorgeous, looking forward to seeing the photos.

  21. Now you've made me start thinking about those black holes again. It's the only thing about my college physics class that I couldn't understand, and that's probably why they scare me to death. :D

    Thanks for stopping by my blog on Saturday. It's nice to meet you.

  22. Your colour scheme seems very bright. Hope we get to see the finished look.

  23. Yes, the way you express your confusion is infinitely more palatable to me than the concept of a parallel universe.

    Your writing den sounds perfect. I'm excited for you.