My weblog ELECTRON BLUE, which concentrated on science and mathematics, ran from 2004-2008. It is no longer being updated. My current blog, which is more art-related, is here.

Fri, 17 Jun, 2005


After more than a week of boiling hot steamy weather, the rains came and the temperature has dropped more than thirty degrees. The area has now returned to its usual state, even during summer: cold, wet, and clammy. There is something just wrong about wearing a sweater and putting the heat on in the middle of June, if you are near sea level. It reminds me why I left Massachusetts for warmer climes.

Inside the house the days seem indistinguishable from the nights, blocked in by dripping dark green vegetation and lit by dim reddish voltage-saving fluorescent lights. My parents' TV is on much of the time, delivering an endless stream of cultural fragments, snapped together by clicks of the remote: smiling blonde weather girls, golf tournaments, car racing, classical music performances, "concerned" blonde newsgirls reporting local crimes, loud car ads, barely-dressed blonde party girls, sober Charlie Rose interviewing a movie star, bits of old movies in black and white, barbed splinters of pop music, pretty girl threatened in a suspense movie, luxury travel destinations, cooking shows, animal rescue stories, pretty blonde girls in skimpy bikinis gyrating to pop-country music, Oprah Winfrey introducing African women victims of rape and torture, ads for prescription drugs, and, finally, the only thing I want to watch…baseball.. Thursday the Sox didn't play. Mother, meanwhile, is reading the collected letters of French author Gustave Flaubert.

Living in the big city, I've gotten used to a fast-paced life. But here it seems like the remote North Woods, despite the heavy traffic on the larger roads only a mile away. My father has planted his tomatoes and fenced them against voracious rabbits and deer. Grey squirrels, swift little red squirrels, chipmunks, and other woodland creatures roam the emerald grass under the trees. Loud little wrens, tweeting titmice, bright cardinals, and a dozen other kinds of birds fill the forest with song. If it rains a bit longer, we'll have mushrooms sprouting in the grass like cartoons. I couldn't stand all this cute nature. I took my mother shopping. I needed to see a parking lot, for Disney's sake.

As a would-be scientist, I have acquired a habit of intense, goal-directed, high-energy action, or at least the need for such action. I must be doing something toward my objective every waking moment. If I am not, I lose momentum. I have tried to do at least one problem a day, and read through one new section. I got to the end of chapter 4 in the Barron's book, the chapter called "Making things move." That is what physics is all about, it seems to me. Keep moving, keep striving, keep going forward, keep learning and finding things out, otherwise you slow down, decelerate, de-orbit. The mist could close in, the light fail, the impetus dwindle. Soon I will review chapter 4, run those formulas again to set them in my memory, crank the torque, and start the Electron's engine for my return to home and work.

Posted at 3:25 am | link

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