God particle found. Life explained. As news confirming the existence of the Higgs Boson has spread across the globe I have personally felt the wave of relief that such a discovery brings. Think, this particle or field, I’m not sure which it is, possibly both, gives deeper meaning and understanding to the world and lives we inhabit. Providing mass to all other quarks, fermions, and other cool sounding things, the Higgs Boson is life itself. Heavy stuff, no pun intended.
I actually felt this field around me yesterday, surprising at it may seem. As I entered my sister and her family’s house for their annual 4th of July gathering a strong yet subtle pull tugged me towards the dining room table. Something was guiding me to the salami, chips, and cheese, and oddly enough, away from the fruit. I’d felt this force before but couldn’t put my finger on it. I was definitely adding mass as I glided through the ether of the kitchen and hovered at the spread of goodies laid out before me. What was this “thing” that was causing my intellect to disappear? Directing me towards the table of over consumption? Adding mass to my body with each passing moment and gesture?
And there you have it. My sense of relief in the latest discovery. That invisible pull has been defined. The Higgs Boson. According to the smart people we now know what gives everything else mass. I was surprised that it wasn’t food but I’m not a physicist. Makes sense that it’s an invisible field that has been driving people mad for decades however. I like to call that invisible field the food environment, but again, I took physics pass/fail at St. Olaf and can’t remember whether I did either. We’ll go with Higgs Boson. Sounds more demented and tormenting than “food environment.”
We now have the answer to the question, “Why in earth did you eat that?” “Higgs made me do it,” we can gleefully respond. The proof is in the pudding, or the ethereal “molasses” as those physicists like to say. No one, not even the scientists, have seen this powerful field, it’s existence is only derived by “bumps” in data, indicating that Higgs had been there, done its deeds, added mass to those who ventured near, and quickly disappeared. The more I think about it, the more this Higgs’ thingy sounds like the food environment. Adds mass? Quickly disappears without a trace? Only perceptible by what’s left behind? As the physics intelligentsia say, “if it walks like a duck…”
All kidding aside, quite a discovery. I’ve already shared my limited understanding, errors and all, so I best be off. More tales of July 4th fun to come.