18 September 2008

LHC meets Jeeves

I thought this Large Hadron Collider stuff was brand new, but Michael French's recent letter to the Daily Telegraph quotes from 1934's Right Ho, Jeeves:

'I was reading in the paper the other day about those birds who are trying to split the atom, the nub being that they haven't the foggiest as to what will happen if they do.

It may be all right. On the other hand, it may not be all right. And pretty silly a chap would feel, no doubt, if having split the atom, he suddenly found the house going up in smoke and himself torn limb from limb.'

1 comment :

rwells said...

Same deal when Oppenheimer and his gang set off the first A-Bomb in Alamagordo, NM. Would all NM go up in flames? Would the cosmic fabric be torn to shreds? Nobody knew, but they all thought it was worth the risk. As it was, radiation moved down-wind (and some poor Navajo sheep herders probably died of cancer) but the test went off without mishap. End result: Hiroshima/Nagasaki, and an unending tale as all god's children get the bomb. Ah, what fools, etc.