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Sunday April 11, 2021
Many years ago, when our son was still alive but not yet a teenager, our family watched a made-for-TV movie called “The Boy in a Plastic Bubble.”
It had little to commend it. Even the story line was a bit hokey – a boy born with no immunity to anything. To have any kind of normal life, he lived inside a large plastic bubble that isolated him from everyone.
It seemed to me, at the time, that it also reflected the life that our son had to lead. Because he had CF, cystic fibrosis, he had to be protected from anything that might lead to a potentially fatal lung infection.
When the movie ended, our son yawned, stretched, and said, “Okay. I’m going to bed.”
On a sudden impulse, I asked, “Do you ever feel like that boy in the bubble?”
He was frozen for an instant. Then he burst into tears.
Categories: Sharp Edges
Tags: bubbles, CF, isolation, trauma
Children love blowing bubbles. They blow bubbles in the bath. They run around the yard leaving trails of bubbles behind them. They try to catch those shimmering, shining bubbles without bursting them.
Bubbles are fascinating. Real, but not real. Some bubbles pop when they touch other bubbles; some merge into bigger bubbles.
I remember community picnics where some bubbles looked like oversized bologna, bigger than the kids who blew them. They drifted overhead. Until they popped and showered droplets of glycerine and detergent on the adults below.
In today’s COVID-19 world, though, “bubble” takes on new meaning. We’re not thinking of bubbles from the outside anymore; we’re thinking of the bubbles we’re inside.
Tags: trust, bubbles, COVID-19
I’m sitting in a chair. No, that’s not quite right. I think I’m sitting in a chair, but quantum physics tells me there’s really no chair there at all, just infinitesimal packets of energy whizzing around that can only be described as probabilities… And of course, I’m also just a collection of probabilities. So there’s no me sitting in something that isn’t a chair.
It makes me wonder who or what is the “I” that’s wondering all these things.
At the other end of reality, I learn about a universe that’s some 14 billion years old, and more than 28 billion light-years across. Like an ancient psalm writer, I wonder, “Who am I, that anyone should think I matter?”
I can’t comprehend a billion of anything, whether time or distance.
Categories: Soft Edges
Tags: bubbles, quantum physics, astronomy, dark matter, Abrams
Tags: bubbles, life