Ronald Brak

Because not everyone can be normal.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Thank You, Science.

I went to Subway today, which is a chain of sandwich shops from America. The sandwiches don't taste bad but for the life of me I can't work out why they decided to name their shops after a long, dank, underground tube that smells of urine. For some reason, I'm not sure why, but I think it has something to do with their current administration's voodoo economics affecting all Americans, at the moment it is cheaper for me to buy a sandwich with a drink than it is to buy one without a drink. This is a minor problem, as I don't actually like any of the drinks they have. The ones with sugar in them have too much sugar in them for me and the one that doesn't have sugar has too much caffeine. I've tried drinking a whole enormous cup of one of their sugary soft drinks, but it made me feel as though I had taken a horse tranquilliser and I could feel my I.Q. dropping by about sixty points as I drifted off into a pre-diabetic coma.

However, as I stood in line, I did consider turning to the young lady behind me and asking politely in my best Australian accent, "Wood'ja like a drink?" It is my belief that Australians use their accents out of politeness. When everybody has to spend a few seconds working out what everyone else has just said, it makes conversation a lot more intellectual and less combative. But I suddenly realized that I couldn't ask the lady this. What if she misinterpreted me and thought I was asking her to partake of an alcoholic beverage down at the local watering hole? I couldn't bear the thought of bitterly disappointing her when she found out that I was just talking about a small tub of subway soft drink.

So I acquired my sandwich and walked out of the place with an enormous Subway soft drink container in my hand. It wasn't very difficult to carry despite its large size, thanks to the immense slabs of hard muscle my body possesses under a thin layer of blubber. I maintain the layer of blubber out of consideration for others. I don't want them to be hurt if they happen to run into me.

I thought about how unfortunate it is that you never seen to come across anyone who is on fire when you just happen to be walking through town carrying a large drink in your hand that you don't particularly want. I briefly speculated upon the possibility that if my drink was sweet enough and a burning person's flames intense enough, would pouring my soft drink on them cause them to explode into a fireball as the sugar ignited? I decided that it was unlikely.

Anyway, as I was walking home, I got hit by hamburger rain. We often have this in Australia. That is, large fat drops that look like hamburger buns as they flatten on the bottom while they fall through the air. Of course you can't actually see that they look like hamburger buns. You have to muck around with a camera that has a very short shutter speed indeed to see that. And if you have a camera that good you shouldn't take it out in the rain in the first place. But nonetheless I took it as read that the raindrops were hamburger shaped.

Then I heard the thunder and I remembered how a dog we used to have, a big German Shepard, was terrified of it. I thought how lucky I was that I knew what thunder was and that it couldn't harm me. (Although admittedly lightning could make a bit of a mess of things.) I tried to explain to our dog that he had nothing to be afraid of, but he just didn't understand. And I wondered how many of my ancestors would have been in a similar position, terrified of the thunder and unable to understand it? For how many generations did they carry their fear with them? So I'd just like to thank all the people, both alive and dead, who have contributed to our understanding of the world. I'd like to thank science for freeing me from superstition and for the fact that I don't cower under the table when I hear thunder.


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