Author Topic: Helmet thread

Helmet thread
« on: August 07, 2014 »
Six jours and chasm54 at Bike Forums write:

I've been lurking. For some reason I have had several months of lucidity during which posting to BF seemed like a complete waste of time. That episode seems to have passed. Oh, and I went for another bike ride today. I did not land on my head. Weird, eh?

. . .

We must be in synch at the quantum level. I too have had several months in which I was sane enough not to waste my time on here. But all good things come to an end. And in the intervening period, I too have managed to avoid falling off. Banged my head on a low beam while coming downstairs, though, I really ought to be more careful.

As physicists long ago observed when they weren't busy trying to sneak peaks into that box containing Herr Schrödinger's cat ("Some air holes at the very least – it's only humane!" insisted Feynman, who wasn't joking), at the quantum level, things get very weird. Not that the non-nanoscopic level is less so, as a visit to the newsstand will show.

The questions to be addressed here: Is posting on a forum a waste of time? Is it indeed a threat to sanity? And do all good things come to an end?

According to the Theory of Relativity, which Einstein came up with long before marrying his cousin, space contracts and time dilates. On a practical level this means you're not imagining things when you're looking at your watch waiting for your partner to get ready to go, but she (if we must settle on a sex-specific pronoun, let us make it the more accurate one) is entirely correct in her assertion that she still "has time," even while the space between you and the door contracts. On a theoretical level, given enough physicists and chalkboards almost anything is possible, including the synchronisation of individual judgments and decisions across the ether.

That a forum is the medium begets the message, always welcome in the cold vacuum of webspace: no, you are not alone. Does that sound like a waste of time?

Sanity is a slipperier devil. Ask Gödel, ask Nash, ask any mad scientist who isn't just irked the Nobel Committee hasn't called. Einstein famously defined insanity as doing the same thing over and over [Tesla: and over] again and expecting different results. By that judgement most of us are a little loopy. Posting on a forum is only a threat to mental equilibrium when one fails to understand the ability of the internet to bring together not just quantumly connected people, but those of opposing polarity. In romantic novels, opposites may well attract; on the net, it usually ends in tears of frustration.

Six jours and chams54 were posting on a helmet thread. Actually, The helmet thread, as the moderators of Bike Forums make an effort to contain possible contagion to a single one (if not a singularity). Those coming across this long-running discussion must decide: observe without attempting to disturb, or insert tuppence?

On The helmet thread it is entirely possible, even likely, that posting will have entirely no effect. Opinions tend to be more entrenched than the Large Hadron Collider. The danger of taking up residence in the thread is that they will eventually be offered with a repetition bordering on, well, something Tesla might appreciate. In other words, saying the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Probably not insane, but easily a waste of time even to newcomers, who will quickly become jaded.

Finally: Do all good things come to an end?