People sometimes accuse me of being smart, but those people mistake overwhelming confidence in myself for intelligence. I’m actually pretty average on the brains scale, I just repeat the few things I know in different ways in an increasingly louder voice, often with exaggerated hand movements, and people listen. Sometimes I get lucky, often I cock up but am quick to blame someone else. Anyway, with this in mind, here are 5 things I really don’t understand.
1.How Things Are Made
I know, that’s a fairly generic heading right there, so I’ll elaborate. There’s a whole bunch of things in the world right now, go on, look around, I’ll wait. Did you see some stuff? I bet you saw a lot of stuff. How does it work? Let’s take this MacBook I’m writing on currently. Somebody, somewhere, at some point, figured out a way to make a screen, and buttons, and computer chips, that do stuff when I press stuff, and put it all in a box, and now I can use it. But they made all this stuff out of earth and rocks and whatnot. Think about it, at some point in its production life, this MacBook was bits of Earth. It had to be, there’s nothing else it could have been. Somewhere out there, there is a person smart enough to turn bits of Earth into other things that they can then use to make computers. How do TVs display images of things happening somewhere else? Somehow somebody thought of a way to take what they were watching and throw it around the world into your living room. If I was born hundreds of years ago and was responsible for inventing things, we wouldn’t even have the wheel.
2. All of Science
Science is hard. There’s not a single part of science that is easy. Nobody studies ‘easy science’. I understand basically no science. I know some of the words. Atoms. Radiation. Soundwaves. But really, they’re just words. How people learn science fascinates me because I have no aptitude for it whatsoever. How on Earth did somebody invent a telescope? Did you know they can cure some illnesses with a poop transplant? Who thought that up? Scientists are the best. They make stuff out of stuff to create new stuff. Someone invented glass! Think about that. Glass! It’s so useful, you can see through it, and it’s just sand. It’s made from sand! Sand! Who thought to make glass from sand? I didn’t. I could look at sand for thousands of years and never come up with glass. I couldn’t even reverse engineer glass into sand. I’ve never looked at a window and seen sand, I guess I assumed somewhere in the world there was a glass mountain or a glass tree where or the glass came from. God damn sand! Somebody did some really good science on glass discovery day.
3. Global Economies
Ok, this one really makes me scratch my head. I read somewhere that the world owes trillions of dollars. You, and I, as people of the world, are massively in debt. But to whom? We owe an unseemly amount of money to someone, but I can’t figure out who. What happens if we don’t pay up? Will we go bankrupt? Aliens? Is it aliens? Why don’t we just decide we’re not in debt anymore if we owe it to ourselves? America owes a bunch of money to China. What if they just stopped paying? What are the consequences? I know if I don’t pay my credit card bill the bank will take me to court. Does China take the US to court? Which court? Aaah, it doesn’t make any sense.
I could have put this one in the science category, but I felt it warranted its own. Think about wifi. You’re using it now. I’m using it now. It’s connecting us. It connects my TV to Netflix. It’s invisible, you can’t smell or taste it, you can’t touch it, but you goddamn know when it’s not there. Get this into your skulls…there’s an invisible thing that floats through the air and gives you internet (which is also something I have no idea about) wherever you are. Somebody figured out how to do that. They made that happen. Some smart asshole made magic internet floaty stuff, made it affordable, and shoved it into your house. How? Who knows. Nobody knows how it works. Nobody.
Ok, I get the basic principle of flight. Thrust + air moving over a wing creates lift. Lift is how planes fly. But…really? Really is that what happens? Something that weighs several tons soars through the air and then gently touches down on the ground thousands of miles away, only to go and do it again later on in the evening. It doesn’t make any sense at all. Planes shouldn’t work. They just shouldn’t. I know science people will say otherwise, screw you science people, but they’re heavy tubes of metal that fly. Impossible! Planes are one of the reasons I sometimes think I’m in a coma and I’ve invented this entire world in my head, because they’re so obnoxiously impossible that not only shouldn’t they exist at all, but they shouldn’t be so commonplace. I use them, I like flying, but I’ll never trust that I haven’t invented them.
So there’s 5 things I don’t understand. There’s more, there’s plenty more. What do you just not get?