Welcome to yet another report from the Joe Zone Bureau of Science (BS), where we spare none of your expense to bring you up-to-date on all the coolest science jazz going on. At the JZ BS, accuracy is king, as embodied in our motto: A half-truth is twice as good as a quarter-truth.
For years, scientists had debated whether the universe would expand forever or collapse back on itself. They knew that all the galaxies were racing away from each other (result of the big bang), like a popcorn ball exploding and sending individual kernels flying in all directions.
Scientists “knew” the galaxies were slowing down, as gravity attracted the galaxies to each other, fighting the original impetus imparted by the big bang. Which would win? It depended on the total mass of the universe, and whether gravity would finally pull all matter back into a ball, as it presumably started. This was truly a great scientific debate. Much scientific mouth-frothing and gamesmanship swirled around this debate. Astronomers, astrophysicists, and cosmologists joined either camp, circled the wagons, and made complicated, scientific naughty gestures at each other.
But they were all wrong. About twenty years ago, the universe got really weird. Did you feel it? I think it was a Thursday. Scientists discovered the galaxies were not slowing down, but accelerating. They were going faster all the time! How is that possible? It’s as if our exploding popcorn ball, instead of having the kernels slowing and falling to the ground, has kernels going faster and faster as they get farther apart. Yoi! Enough to give Mr. Sir Isaac Newton a headache!
The poor scientists had no idea what was causing this. It was as if energy was being supplied to the galaxies, but no one could see or sense the energy, or its source. So they labeled it “dark energy.” Because they couldn’t see it, even with the Hubble telescope, and radio telescopes, and Google Earth.
Which brings up the haunting question: What else are they wrong about?
I don’t mean this to be a scientist-bashing session, though heaven knows that could be fun. There are some real gas bags out there who desperately need a precision pin prick. Hey, I’m sure it’s not easy being a scientist. All those secrets of the universe out there, hiding from us, smirking as we look in the wrong places and come up with silly theories that desperation makes look reasonable. In fact, I’ll bet those secrets of the universe have formed a secret society, The Secret Order of the Secrets of the Universe (SOOTSOTU), where they meet to point at us and laugh. I know I often have the feeling of being pointed at, and hearing laughing, and I’m not even a scientist.
Anyway, here’s my list of the top five things that scientists may be wrong about:
5. The Earth is round – I mean, they used to tell us it was flat. How do we know which time they were wrong?
4. Weather is inanimate, and is not mean to people – It has actually rained on me out of a clear blue sky. And it is well-documented that tornadoes hate trailer parks. No-brainer.
3.14159. (Scientists like that number) The appendix serves no bodily function – There seems to be mounting evidence that the appendix controls ESP. For those who undergo an appendectomy, the secondary ESP organ takes over, which is the earlobe. Pierced earlobes lead to increased psi powers, with the ESP freely leaking out of the lobe holes.
2. You’re a monkey’s uncle – Personally, I feel that if I’m descended from anything, it’s a tree. Probably a willow. I’m kind of droopy anyway, and don’t move around a lot. Hold the sap jokes, please.
1. Cookies, ice cream, cheeseburgers, etc, are bad for you – My own theory is that anything that tastes good must be good for you. If that stuff was bad for us, our bodies would have developed a natural dislike for them, in order to protect us. That’s why dirt tastes bad. And sneakers. And beets. Especially beets.
Well, I must admit the mirror seems especially misty on this topic. And we haven’t even mentioned Dark Matter. But I’ll keep working at it. So stay tuned for all the latest scientific developments, translated by the Joe Zone BS into common gobbledy-gook and horse feathers.