10.22.2006

VP on death and idiots

from VP's notebooks:

"Trying to make up for the incompetence and idiocy of others is simply too monumental a task to ask of any one person or community. The only functionally worthwhile alternative, the only one with any hope for even marginal success, is to account for your own lackings and pray for others to learn by osmosis."


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"And now these three remain: taxes, confusion, and death. But the surest of these is death."

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1 Comments:

Blogger Josh said...

on sunday night, while the girls were setting up the pull-out couch, my cousin's husband--my hiking buddy, john, the phd in organic chemistry from cornell--had a conversation about the collision between the mystical and functional. ours was a conversation about heisenberg's principal of indeterminacy: that is, the velocity of an electron and the position of an electron cannot be concurrently known.

"when you push the boundaries of science you eventually come to a precipice from which you have to accept some kind of faith--there is something mystical about heisenberg's principle, even though it's simply a mathematical paradox," john said.

another example. the difference between the molecule of chloroplast, the foundation of plant life, and hemoglobin, the foundation of animal life, is that the chloroplast has one atom of magnesium and the hemoglobin has one atom of iron. in john's research, the same structure of chloroplast/hemoglobin with an aluminum atom to is used to generate energy for creating biodegradable plastics.

this seems functional and concurrently too mystical for me to wrap my meager brain around.

so perhaps the question is this. do the functional and the mystical really collide, or are do they only appear to collide?

9:57 PM  

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