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17 November 2007 / April

“But why are you taking Physics?”

Answer: for the badly written manual problems.

(Also we don’t have super-hard tests or quizzes every day. And I’m actually interested in physics, as opposed to chemistry or biology. And dealing with a horrible teacher… builds character. Or something like that.)

I’m not even going to bother ranting about the notebook check (oh the stupidity, it hurts) and the time we wasted re-doing a lab we’d done in the beginning of the year. Instead, here are a couple choice quotes from my Physics homework:

“The ball just mentioned [from the previous problem] no longer moves directly right and left. An ideal small ball moves directly right and left.”

… What? That’s such a blatant contradiction, even a cursory skim before hitting “print” would have caught it.

“An automobile passenger with a mass of 50.0 kg runs into a bridge support going 24.0 m/s.”

Maybe I’m just sillier than the typical Physics student, but I definitely spent a considerable amount of time wondering why the bridge support was moving. Was it sliding down an inclined plane? Being carried by a truck to a construction site? Or was a motile bridge just another one of my teacher’s feeble attempts at humor?

Of course, since all motion is relative, it doesn’t really matter whether it was the bridge or the person doing the moving. Unless you’re actually concerned with The Real World and nonsense like that.

I just reread what I’ve written here and was struck by the bizarre image of an innocent human being totally run over by a bridge hurtling down a steep slope at 50 mph. Imagine the trauma of being in such a situation.

It would make for an excellent epitaph on your tombstone, I suppose.


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