What we know about space….

Well, we are coming to the end of our unit study of the moon; this includes the movement of the moon, the landing on the moon of man, the phases of the moon, and the craters of the moon.  We also compared those craters on the moon with those on earths and pondered how they were made and why the moon had more.  That was the extent of our study.  Mr. D. also knows the names of the other planets in our solar system and most times gets their order right – many thanks to They Might Be Giants and their fabulous Here Comes Science music CD (should have won a Grammy this year, IMHO).

I was mistaken.  Mr. D. knows much, much more.

At lunch today – Mummy and Daddy minestrone, Mr. D. porridge of his own accord – he announced that he knew stuff about the universe that scientists so far didn’t.  Well – what an invite to sit and listen, eh?

According to Mr. D. “humans should never have been, the Earth should never have been, and our Universe should never have been.”  By that he meant that there was no PLAN for us to be, we just, against all odds, are here.  He added, “everything comes to an end, everything has a beginning, but if there is nothing beyond space, how can that be?”  His first theorem is that there is space inside atoms and that space must contain a gas we don’t comprehend as yet and that gas allowed all life to be.  He also posited that although the Universe didn’t exist in space, it had existed in airy gassy mode, in time.  Something then happened for that gas to take shape, which was the beginning of our Universe as we know it.  When Daddy gave Mr. D. the beginner version of the Big Bang theory, Mr. D. explained that “No, Daddy, the electrons and neutrons and stuff can’t have been packed that small – there must have been space of some sort between them or they wouldn’t be what we know them as and it is that space that holds the answer“.  Wonder if he will be proved right?  Wouldn’t that be something to help us remember this snowy afternoon?

Of course, the last theorem altered somewhat and it went like this:  Our Universe was like a big balloon, expanding, expanding, but standing outside our Universe (on the balloon skin, if you prefer) was a giant alien, because, really Mummy and Daddy, where else would aliens have come from.  And this alien was directing everything, rather like the Universe was a puppet on a string!  Ahhhhh.

Meanwhile, lunch is over.  We’ve told Mr. D. he can discuss his physics with his cousin Johanna’s husband Alex, a physicist.  Daddy and Mr. D. ducked outside for a snowball fight and all is back to normal (I hear him grumbling about something upstairs).  What isn’t normal are the gigantic grins on the parental faces.  Who knew we’d be discussing this – and in all seriousness, too – with our 6 year old?  Gotta love kids.


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