Monday, June 11, 2007

The universe explained

This is extremely tangentially related to the past weekend (see below), but I wound up with only one picture because my camera slipped into the other dimension for awhile.

You know the theory of multiple possible universes? When I was teaching high school, I shared a classroom with a very fabulous woman who wore colors Z. would approve of, knew all the seniors' gossip because she supervised yearbook, kept a poster of Almost Famous on the wall, and timed her commute so that she could call in to the Beatles quiz when she got to the parking lot every morning. She was great.

She explained to me one of our universe's great puzzles: Why is it that you often find an object in a place you know you've already looked for it?

There is an alternate universe that is like ours in every way, occupying the same space and time but in an overlapping dimension. Our universe is semi-permeable to that universe but it is invisible to us. In the other universe, however, they know about our universe because objects from our side are always slipping over to their side. They remain in the same place, but they slip into the other dimension and are inaccessible. Suddenly in the other universe they have duplicates. They would prefer not to call attention to themselves, for reasons that I think are obvious (would you want our universe to take notice of yours?), so they push the objects back to our side, discreetly, as soon as they can after they notice them. Since they occupy the same time that we do, time has always passed by the time the object is back in place.


niobe said...

Hmmm...the only thing this theory leaves unexplained (at least until you explain it) is why lost objects from the other universe don't end up in ours.

I've often been unable to find something I'm looking for, but I don't remember ever finding two of them when I was looking for just one.

S. said...

I imagine it as though our universe is a shelf above the other one, dimensionally speaking. According to my colleague's theory, the duplicate objects need to be actively replaced from the other side--like putting a fallen object back on a shelf.

niobe said...

Okay. Now it all makes sense.

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