10 January 2008

Put Me On Intermittent

A couple of weeks ago, Kristi and I were in Idaho celebrating Christmas with the Call family (Kristi's maternal grandparents and down). One morning, a few of us decided to go play basketball at the YMCA. But, before getting our game on, there was another opponent that the driver, Craig, had to battle: The snow.

See, Craig is from Arizona, and so his dad, Bruce, decided that Craig should get some practice on snowy Idaho roads since he will likely never get such practice in Arizona (of course, in Arizona, he gets practice on melty roads). A quick talk about black ice, drift, etc. was enough to make Craig really nervous, but he was a pretty good sport.

Our conversation about driving in the snow, including the important note that the traction that the road will provide will be intermittent, led us to wonder what would be the worst kind of 'intermittence' that one could experience while on the road.

Unanimously, it was gravity. Imagine a storm that could cause the natural gravitational pull of the road to ebb and flow. What would happen if we hit a bump in the road just when the Earth's gravitational pull was compromised? What if it didn't come back for several seconds and then quickly resumed its regularly scheduled behavior? That, indeed would be scary.

However, if you were just on foot, it would sure be fun to splash in those puddles...

After only a few minor mistakes of our young driver, we made it safely to the YMCA where we played basketball for a couple of hours. After those couple of hours passed, we played for a couple more hours. After those couple of hours passed, we played raquetball. Dude. We were at the YMCA for 4-1/2 hours! Suddenly, it wasn't the intermittent traction on the road that bothered me, but instead my intermittent muscle spasms that made me wish I had stuck with a more intermittent level of participation in the days events.

I wonder what would really be particularly bad if it were intermittent. For example, air being intermittent would be particularly bad. Water, food, and sleep aren't as bad as air. Indeed, many people practice a certain level of intermittence with these three (to their detriment, I supposed) due to mountains of homework, mountains of sick kids, or mountains of video gaming to catch up on after the homework and sick kids become a little more intermittent themselves.

Hands would be bad. I'd hate to have the use of my hands wax and wane. Or disappear and reappear. Any vital part of our body would probably be bad. Someone, I don't think that an intermittent belly button would be too bad. I could even go with intermittent hair, if I had to choose. *knock on wood*

Our 3-dimensions would be bad to have intermittent. Maybe we wouldn't even notice if our world changed intermittently from 2- to 3- dimensions, so long as our bodies followed suit. But what if the temporal dimension moved intermittently into a spatial dimension? Now, those, would be some interesting puddles!

Solid vs. liquid intermittence would be bad for most material, including carpet. I can't imagine having the horrible luck of having one's carpet intermittently change from a solid to a liquid. I'd be sure to get stuck or have one of my kids stuck or a guest--who every time he comes over we seem to have the bad luck of having our carpet liquify under his feet--stuck.

I'm just happy for the law of interia, which seems to keep things going the way they are.

Then again, maybe the law of interia might turn out to be intermittent...