Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Things Can Only Get Not Better

Professor Brian CoxI’ve spent the last four Sundays having my weekends lulled into the great infinity of the past to the carefully modulated tones of Professor Brian Cox as he explains to me the Wonders Of The Universe.

There’s not a lot not to like about Professor Brian Cox even though one blogger has described him as having the “nasty wet lips of a rapist”. He’s kind of a human version of Bungle from Rainbow – only with the intellectual capacity of a young Einstein and the enthusiasm for the cosmos of a much thinner, more youth marketable Sir Patrick Moore.

My wife claims he has the perfect voice to fall asleep too (which may explain a lot of the late night phone calls she’s been making) though she’s at pains to point out that it’s not at all because he’s boring. On the contrary, what he says is incredibly fascinating and intellectually dynamic. It’s just that his soft, Rupert The Bear tones are endlessly comforting and after a busy weekend they can tend to have a pleasurably soporific effect.

Personally I stay wide awake to watch the computer generated representations of supernovas and black holes as Professor Brian talks about the end of the universe. That’s the kind of universal Armageddon renaissance man I am.

‘Cos the end of the universe is coming, folks. Professor Brian said so. All this starry shit we’ve got going on at the moment with galaxies and constellations... well, it’s just a passing fad. One day all those little lights are going to go out. All matter will dissipate. And the universe will become one unending stretch of darkness. Time itself will stop because there will be no more change.

Apparently it’s all down to entropy. Entropy is the natural order of things. Everything, given time will break down, collapse, fall apart and dissolve into a uniform state of formlessness.

This may explain my modus operandi at work but the less said about that the better.

I’m not sure how I feel about it really; the end of the Universe. I mean, one could take the bleak approach and think, “Well, what’s the point of it all, then? What’s the point of morality? Of caring? Of procreation? Of Katie Price?”

But the best thing about Professor Brian is his unfailing ability to see the wonder and the wonderfulness in all things. (With possibly the exception of Katie Price.)

Because as Professor Brian explained it, without entropy, without the end of all things being on the cards, we wouldn’t have a beginning of things. We wouldn’t have this miracle of life; this relatively tiny span of time in eternity where life in the universe is possible.

Of course, we wouldn’t have Katie Price, David Cameron and Eamonn Holmes either but I guess for the purposes of infinite possibility we have to accept the shit with the gold.

And so suddenly, it all makes sense. More than that, the preciousness, the sheer miraculous nature of life becomes clear. We’re lucky to be here. It’s amazing we’re all here, right now, together at this point in time. Although technically speaking, cosmologically speaking, this is the only time we could be here.

I think what I like the most about Professor Brian is the way he manages to imbibe hardcore physics with a truly non-denominational sense of spirituality. A sense of meaning, of higher order, of purpose. Without getting all God-bothery about it.

It’s a heady brew to partake of on a Sunday night and I shall miss it now that the series has come to an end.

But those lips... they are nasty and wet, I have to admit.



Share

31 comments:

The Dotterel said...

Must admit he doesn't do a thing for me. Give me Alice Roberts anyway.

Anyway, he's far too young to be a Professor. And his hair's too long.

Heather said...

And he's got piggy little eyes. I've only watched one episode of this and found it all a bit...well, shit. His child-like enthusiasm for everything was too much for me and I find his tone of voice rather patronising.

But everyone else seems to think he's ace so clearly I'm missing something. Maybe I was just in a bad mood when I watched him.

Steve said...

The Dotterel: you can give me Alice Roberts any day too. As for Bri (as I like to call him); he's not that young really. He's been in a band and stuff. Then got his qualifications. He's probably about 57 really but his lips make him look younger. I mean it works for Mick Jagger, doesn't it?

Heather: do you ever watch telly in a good mood? ;-) P.S. Nice to see you back.

Being Me said...

Bit of a sobering thought for the middle of the week. Or any other day, for that matter.

Well, at least I have an excuse for not doing the dishes. What's the point? Some wet-lipped long-haired try-hard English professor said so (is what I'll claim in my defense when the HazMat team comes and condemns my house)

MOTHER OF MANY said...

I would like to take him seriously but find it difficult to see passed the fringe(he probably does too)!I once read somewhere that men with fringes never really grow up and when I see him I always think of this.

Steve said...

Being Me: it is actually a very good point. Why bother doing the dishes? The food will only rot away anyway if you leave it long enough and those atoms will be released into the universe to become part of other organisms. I think it's a brilliant defence. I might have to turn down any future dinner invitations round at yours though. Entropy plays havoc with my bowel movements.

Ally: I haven't had a fringe for years but I don't think this means that I have in anyway grown up or matured. I think all men are big kids regardless of which bowl they use to cut their hair...! ;-)

Kelloggsville said...

I've not seen any of it but I am pleased the world is going to end because I've been worrying about a lot of stuff I have to do. Will the end be before May? If so I can stop worrying now. Looking forward to your full reassurance of certain death before my deadline date.

Gorilla Bananas said...

His lips would be a lot wetter if my females got their hands on him. His Mancunian accent would annoy them, though, your wife must have very tolerant ears.

Trish @ Mum's Gone to... said...

I'm a big fan of Prof Cox - I don't mind his lips at all and what comes out of them is astronomical honey.

Mind you, I'm sure they could lop half an hour off each episode and it would engage me a tad longer as I do tend to drift.

Have you seen this spoof Youtube video? Made me laugh.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fhn8j7S4uKU&feature=player_embedded#at=66

Steve said...

Kelloggsville: I'm afraid it might be a long time coming. According to my mate, Bri, it's going take several billion billion years. Can you string things out a bit longer?

Gorilla Bananas: to be honest, she's mostly asleep when Professor B does his thing.

Trish: when you've been spoofed then you know you've hit the big time. ;-)

Nota Bene said...

That's the second time recently you've missed the opportunity for a picture of a semi-naked woman to titilate us all. Is that because Katie Price is just too shit to countenance?

Anyway I may have to switch to a subscription for The Sun

Phil said...

My oh my oh my, what a magnificently uplifting blog this is. So overloaded with upbeat optimism, positive vibes and good natured all round great big sticky wet dollops of good old fashioned bonhomie and positive mental thinking.

I woke up this morning, had me a long, loud and sumptuous stretch and thought…I know what I’ll do today…I’ll slice off my bollocks, feed them to the cats, then slowly disembowel myself and slit my own throat.

Then, on the way out to the tool shed, I thought – let’s at least have one last trip over to ‘Bloggertopmyself’ and witness how good life might have been before I start rewarding myself with a serious dose of self harm.

So delighted I looked in here Steve. Haven’t felt so rejuvenated and full of just plain old unfettered hopeless melancholy since I started out on the Prozac as a mere child.

Thanks mate – you’re such a real star bloke.

Steve said...

Nota Bene: yes. Katie Price is just too shit to countenance. However, your side order or boobies has been noted and I'll see what I can do over future posts.

Phil: but look on the bright side. At least when you're rotting in your coffin you'll be feeding the worms who in turn will help fertilize the soil. Unless you're cremated, of course, in which case you'll just shit the air up for the rest of us and hasten the effects of global warming. Try to be eco-friendly when you top yourself, eh? Or just do what I'm doing: sit back, chillax, wait for the universe to do it all for you.

the fly in the web said...

Don't need Bri in this household...the mad sister in law has just spent a fortune crossing the world to a conference on the Mayan prophecies by which the world will end in 2012....
If she's only waited she could have found that out for herself...

Steve said...

The fly in the web: it's the Olympics, isn't it? They're going to be so bad that God himself is going to smite us. Curse you, Boris Johnson!

libby said...

Naahhhhh.....I'm not in the Prof Cox fan club.....I'd rather have Theis from The Killing.......

Owen said...

Well, as long as Katie Price is still with us, I guess I can wait a few billion years for the end and entropy to come...

Thank the stars for Bloggertropolis, without which I probably never would have heard of Katie, and never would have seen the Google images section under her name... Until now I hadn't realized how totally incomplete my life was. Honestly, you are just a goldmine of information...

Steve said...

Libby: but what size is his telescope?

Owen: ah. I see you have come face to silicon with her supernovas. On a bad day they block out the light of the sun. On a good day they can restrict your breathing. ;-)

The Poet Laura-eate said...

This doom-monger does nothing for me.

Plus I reckon he's as gay as a window, so no point fancying him anyway.

Steve said...

Laura: gay? Gay?! Prof Bri is too damned geeky to be gay!

Marginalia said...

The gob smacking (Brian's gob has already been smacked hard) thing is this. That while the 2nd law of thermodynamics does its darnedest to turn everything, life, me and the universe into a boring, cold mush, there are organising forces steadfastly holding out against the tyranny of entropy.

Gravity's a good guy, as is nuclear fusion and you and me and all living things - here and elsewhere, carbon based or not. We build and hold together, structure, organise and differentiate.

But it's a futile hope to imagine we can outwit the increase in entropy - from diversity, elaboration and complexity to uniformity, silence and flatness.

In the end it'll get us good guys, and we won't have any choice but to turn to the Dark Side.

Steve said...

Marginalia: so which Darth are you? Siddious or Maul?

Marginalia said...

Steve, in my philosophical persona I'm Siddhartha.

The Sagittarian said...

I saw this guy on the Graham Norton show last week, had never heard of him before....he did seem a tad damp round the edges but there was something 'nice' about him. Is he quite newsworthy up there then?

Steve said...

Marginalia: that's very Zen of you.

Amanda: here in the UK, "nice" is always newsworthy because it happens so infrequently.

lunarossa said...

Cannot stand him. He reminds me too much of James Blunt. Better shaved, though. I think he is so egogentric. Haven't you noticed that in almost every scene there is him at the centre of everything. At the centre of the Universe! Ciao. A.

Steve said...

Lunarossa: it must be down to his gravity.

Livi said...

Well that was a a cheerful start to my Thursday evening reading.....!

Steve said...

Livi: yes, but look on the bright side... no, wait. There isn't one.

Shit.

joebloggs said...

See! Its not just me is it?
I fear your "Man crush" has fogged your mind, turned you into a giggling schoolgirl ripe for a big wet kiss from his NASTY wet lips....(just sicked up a bit then!)

Steve said...

Joe: the thought of sicking up in Professor Brian's mouth makes me sick up even more.