Thursday, October 22, 2009


So reads the headline from...when?

Just putting two completely different things together, as I'm occasionally wont to do; not least because the first item is so outlandish that it is difficult not to put it together with the second. So, here we go:

South Australian primary school bans hugging

YEAR six and seven students have been banned from mixed-sex consensual hugging at a primary school in South Australia for fear it would set a "bad example" to younger students...

Large Hadron Collider is 'being sabotaged from the future'

SCIENTISTS claim the giant atom-smashing Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is being jinxed from the future to save the world.

In a bizarre sci-fi theory, Danish physicist Dr Holger Bech Nielsen and Dr Masao Ninomiya from Japan claim the LHC startup has been delayed due to nature trying to prevent it from finding the elusive Higgs boson, or "God particle".

They say their maths proves that nature will "ripple backward through time" to stop the LHC before it can create the God particle, like a time traveller who goes back in time to kill his grandfather...

...and, in a supplement to this one, and definitely much less bizarre...

Stephen Hawking bets Large Hadron Collider won't work

RENOWNED British astrophysicist Stephen Hawking has bet £50 ($110) that a mega-experiment this week will not find an elusive particle seen as a holy grail of cosmic science.... "I think it will be much more exciting if we don't find the Higgs. That will show something is wrong, and we need to think again. I have a bet of 100 dollars that we won't find the Higgs," said Prof Hawking...

Well, it's not like he bet his life's saving, but...

My readers may know how I feel about the LHC, which I consider a very dangerous waste of money that would be better spent on medical research. But hey, people spend a lot of money of stuff that's 'waste' and possibly deserves a much worse label.

Anyway, back to putting apparently unconnected things together; as I did—allow me to inject a bit of shameless self-promotion here—in my novel Continuity Slip, which, for those requiring economy, is available not only as a print volume, but also a fairly cheap download from here.

Now you've got to admit that the hugging ban may be even more bizarre than the LHC thing; if for no other reason but that it is irrational at too many levels to discuss here. To get you started, think of the ramifications and implicit absurdities. Like, what about same-sex hugging? What if it's boyfriend-boyfriend or girlfriend-girlfriend hugging? Is that one OK? And how could you tell? And then there's the question of what about maybe-soon-girl/boyfriends? You know, what you might call 'developing relationships'. And what's a 'hug' anyway? Like is this a hug?

Or is this this an arm-over-shoulder? Are we talking about full-body stuff?

And if this absurdity is really being followed through, just exactly how far does this extend—like 'geographically', I mean, like...

Here's the scenario. Suppose it's defined as 'no hugging (whatever that's supposed to mean) on school grounds. So what happens the moment girl-boy, girl-girl or boy-boy—ahh, no, those last two pairing are OK, I think—set a foot outside the fence? I can see a hug-fest, full body and all, plus maybe some more demonstrative displays, like that school's 'administrators' have never seen before. Just to spite them.

Which reminds me, the reasons—if using that word isn't an implicit insult to anybody who ever used 'reason' in their lives— for the ban apparently included... outbreak of hugging when friends were reunited following the recent school holidays...

The only explanation for this circus, next to simple human stupidity—will someone please fire the dumbwit principal and the rest of the morons responsible for this!?—has got to be that something , something!, is reaching out back in time from a maybe-not-distant future, where all physical human interactions are either strictly monitored or banned, or both; except in legally carefully defined exceptions. It's not like this isn't the way 'western' societies are moving, sometimes with blinding speed.

Hey, why not? If the future is nuking the proper functioning of the LHC—something I'd be grateful for, and maybe we all should be—then why not hugging, eh?

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