Posted by: David | March 2, 2016

Awkward Writ Large

Today was an unexpected day off from work. Late winter can bring these days, but it’s unusual when one begins as a 2-hour delay, then becomes a closure. This morning’s freezing rain progressed as such.

So what to do? Netflix, of course!

Binge-watched Love, the Netflix 10-part series exploring the developing relationship between two fairly unlikable re-bounders ably inhabited by actors Paul Rust and  Gillian Jacobs. I’d started the series a day or two earlier, so only had about 7 episodes to watch, and with all day to do so, there was time to watch a similarly themed movie, Slow Learners. O, star-cross’d lovers, how do you survive?

Artist’s conception of colliding black holes. Image courtesy LIGO website.

The awkward and unreliable narrator is all the rage these days, in books, movies and TV series. Maybe it’s the evolutionary result of the last century’s so-called “anti hero”. These characters are everywhere. Their painful collisions can be entertaining to watch, and interesting, but at the end one wonders about the meaning of it all. One feels moved but a little dark.

It made me think of what the LIGO experiment detected last September. Announced around Valentine’s Day of this year, both of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory detectors detected a ripple in the fabric of spacetime. They’re calling it a gravity wave. It was caused by the collision and merging of two giant black holes over a billion years ago. Einstein predicted these things 101 years ago. He was married twice. He and his second wife were cousins. Love and cosmology. Awkward.


  1. Love and cosmology is a mashup that every astrophysicist i know just abhors. Awkward? I guess. Or at least a sukky topic to make smalltalk with on a first date with an astrophysicist. Unless it’s the end of the evening and he is just not taking your hint about needing to get home and “I don’t know — wash my hair.” Also: I too am struck by the omnipresence of the unreliable narrator. They seem to be everywhere, even on the News. I like this post, if you couldn’t tell. 🙂

    Oh vermonter, you leave the very bestest comments! Even if I wasn’t married I would avoid dating astrophysicists. They must be awful about taking ANY kind of hints. They would probably require rigorous proofs before considering actionable options. Dinner, movie and hours at the chalkboard. NO THANK YOU. Makes the unreliable narrator seem, er, downright desirable don’t it?

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