Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Matt's Experiments

When Matt was about twelve, he placed a jar of raw meat on the windowsill by his bed to see what would happen. Before long, the entire biomass in the jar was changed from meat to maggots, swarming in a vile mass.

When he was thirteen, he took a cupful of gasoline to his room, ignited it, and then poured it out his window onto the roof of the porch, where it burned itself out but did not set the roof on fire.

At about 14, he coiled a long length of wire around a pipe, attached an electrical cord, and then dropped a canning-jar ring over it. The idea was that when he turned on the switch, the jar ring would fly off the pipe and up in the air. Instead, he dimmed all the lights in the house and nearly zapped himself into Heaven.

Would the scientific experiments end when he grew up, I wondered. Evidently not. I came home from Virginia Monday night to find a sign taped on a kitchen cupboard: "Starting Tuesday a.m. do not empty this trash can. I need it for my archeology class."

It turns out that the students will all bring their offerings from home, exchange bags, and then analyze. Everything that would not last for 500 years will be discarded; the rest will be studied for clues to the identity and characteristics of the family involved.

I have put up with Matt’s experiments all these years--at least the ones I knew about at the time--in hopes that they would lead him to someday find a brilliant cure for cervical cancer or Alzheimer’s. If he ends up being an ordinary guy whose only experiments are trying to make a homemade helicopter at age 55, I’ll have some serious regrets to deal with.

Quote of the Day:
"All moms are alike. If their daughter has a problem—a PERSONAL problem—they tell it to all the other moms."
--Bethany Clugston, as told to me by Emily, who heartily agreed

12 comments:

  1. Matt sounds like a budding Thomas A. Edison! Most inventor/scientists have some spectacular flops, but they lead to many stupendous successes. May he remain safe in his future exploits.

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  2. Matt sounds like a budding Thomas A. Edison! Most inventor/scientists have some spectacular flops, but they lead to many stupendous successes. May he remain safe in his future exploits.

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  3. Iv been keeping up with all your "blogging" keep it up your ability to pull the ordinary experiences of life and make a story is truly a gift. And by the way the ones awhile ago on smucker men had a very familiar ring to them guess we should chat somtime eh? =)

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  4. Why reinvent the wheel? There are already brilliant cures for both cervical cancer and Alzheimers. However, if you haven't heard about them it's because the medical field won't accept them (no money for them). Back to Matt, anything worth doing is worth doing wrong at first.

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  5. Matt's gas experiment reminded me of my husband's..... Somewhere around the age of ten, he took a gas can and poured gasoline onto the burning sparklers in the top of his sand "volcanoe". He needed lava, of course. The first try was uneventful, but on the second attempt, flame leapt up to the mouth of the fume-filled can and hovered there till he blew it out. On the third try, (he needed MORE lava, of course) the flame which leapt to the mouth of the can would not be blown out, so he swung the can in circles around himself and finally threw it onto the yard, where it rolled and sloshed out burning gas to create a nice trail of black spots to greet his father when he came home!

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  6. I was looking at your posts about cancer and found a good article about the same cancer info too...

    God luck with it : )

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  7. I was looking at your posts about cancer research and found a good article about the same cancer research info too...

    God luck with it : )

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    I have a colorectal cancer site. It pretty much covers colorectal cancer related stuff.

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  11. Hi. I would like to make friends with people who enjoy archeaology. I've joined this site (archeaology) to try to meet some new friends but I wondered if you knew of any other such sites.
    interested in archeaology

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  12. hehehe...I was accused of this just today. So glad it's ALL of us, and not just me! Lol

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