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Life Arts    H4'ed 8/7/12

The Higgs Boson Speaks!

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The Cosmos
The Cosmos
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I am the Higgs Boson, and I'm responsible for all the mass in the universe.   I want to congratulate you for bringing me, the God particle, into view.   I will only be here for a picosecond, so you're going to want to take notes.

   It pains me to say it, but humanity is the silliest product of creation.   Even the leptons say so, and you know how goofy leptons can be.   We here in the Standard Model have worked meticulously to assure your existence.   We've tweaked every constant, every force, just so, to give you a chance at life.

   You, however, are blowing it.

   You are overheating the earth.   You should hear the complaints I get from matter about that.   You've got the atoms moving around so fast they're pooped.   My advice about global warming?   Cool it.

   Wars of religion stain your history from one millennium to the next, and they're all basically about the same, silly thing: the name of God.   But the God particle came into consciousness without bloodshed.   Your scientists debate my existence, attributes and name in nice, courtly conferences.   And nobody is calling for Mr. Higgs to be crucified.

   That is the preferable way to do business, don't you think?

   We here in the fundament, with a small handful of particles, fields and energies, keep the entire universe going.   From Gladiolas to galactic clusters, we've got it covered.

   You can't keep one lousy planet turning without grinding gears like a busted clutch.   Get it together or we'll start again on a new planet where our great and endless gifts will be appreciated.

   And please, whatever you do, don't make a bomb out of me.   I'm the God particle, I have a reputation to protect.

   I know you're the species that thinks, but you've got to lighten up about your ideologies.   The universe is about 13 billion years old, you've been around a few million and you just found me.   There is more dark energy and matter, about which you know nothing, than everything you know about put together.

   Yet some of you think you have it all figured out.   There is one way to run a civilization, one way to construct an economy, one inflexible standard of justice.   But how can you be so sure when you're still learning?

   Speaking of dark matter, we've done that on purpose.   We've only let you see thirty percent of the universe, and some of the gluons think that's already too much.   Show me you can handle one, measly third of reality without burning, wasting and messing it up and we can talk about the rest.

   Still, out of all uncounted rocks circling numberless stars in the vast universe, it was you who summoned me into existence.   A tiny, improbable collection of carbon-based apes did that.   The question is how?

   You did it together, that's how.   The quarreling tribes of the mud-ball you call home put aside their differences long enough to build a giant race track where my kind are free to roam and do tricks for you.   There is virtually no limit to the good your silly species can do together, just as there is virtually no limit to the mischief you can do separately.

   The biggest problem I've observed with humanity is that one of you always wants to be top quark.   Some among you have a pathological need to dominate.

   I feel your pain.   We have a top quark here too.   There are six of us, in fact, named Up, Down, Charm, Strange, Bottom and Top.   Top would love to run the cosmos all by itself, but we don't let it.   The way we've set it up, when one of us gets too big for his britches he spontaneously explodes.   And here's the beauty part.   None of us can exist in isolation.   Each quark is inevitably entwined with another.   That's the way of reality.

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San Francisco based columnist, author, gym rat and novelist. My book, "The Confessions of a Catnip Junkie" is the best memoir ever written by a cat. Available on Amazon.com, or wherever fine literature is sold with no sales tax collected. For (more...)
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