At the Party with the Physicists

One day, all of the world's famous physicists decided to get together for a party (ok, there were some non-physicists too who crashed the party). Fortunately, the doorman was a grad student, and able to observe some of the guests...

  • Everyone gravitated toward Newton, but he just kept moving around at a constant velocity in an elliptical orbit.
  • Einstein thought he had a relatively good time.
  • Coulomb got a real charge out of the whole thing.
  • Cavendish wasn't invited, but he had the balls to show up anyway.
  • Cauchy, the mathematician, managed to integrate well with everyone.
  • Thompson enjoyed the plum pudding.
  • Pauli came late, but was mostly excluded from things, so he split.
  • Planck showed lot of energy; but in discrete packets.
  • Pascal was under too much pressure to enjoy himself.
  • Ohm spent most of the time resisting Ampere's opinions on current events.
  • Hamilton went to the buffet tables exactly once.
  • Volta thought the social had a lot of potential.
  • Hilbert was pretty spaced out most of the time.
  • Heisenberg may or may not have been there.
  • The Curies were there and just glowed the whole time.
  • van der Waals forced himself to mingle.
  • Wien radiated a colourful personality.
  • Millikan dropped his Italian oil dressing.
  • de Broglie mostly just stood in the corner and waved.
  • Joseph Weber returned the wave with gravity.
  • Hollerith liked the hole idea.
  • Stefan and Boltzman got into some hot debates.
  • Everyone was attracted to Tesla's magnetic personality.
  • Hawking looked radiant. Weakly.
  • Wilhelm Weber & Gauss argued as to had a more magnetic personality.
  • Compton was a little scatter-brained at times and thus got along very well with C V Raman.
  • Rutherford kept searching for gold foils to shoot at.
  • Bohr & Van Allen ate too much. Bohr got atomic ache while Van Allen had to loosen his belt..
  • Watt turned out to be a powerful speaker.
  • Hertz went back to the buffet table several times a minute.
  • Faraday had quite a capacity for food. But his son, Pico Farad only had a billion billionth of the quantity his father ate.
  • Oppenheimer got bombed.
  • Penzias and Wilson were the first to detect the microwave radiating in the background.
  • After one bite Chandrasekhar reached his limit.
  • Gamow left the party early with a big bang while Hoyle stayed late in a steady state.
  • Schrodinger theorised this was more a wave function than a social function.
  • Popper said this theory was not falsifiable.
  • Erdos was sad no epsilons were invited.
  • Born thought the probability of enjoying himself was pretty high.
  • Instead of coming through the front door Josephson tunnelled through.
  • Groucho refused to attend any party that would invite him in the first place.
  • Niccolò Tartaglia kept stammering throughout the evening.
  • Pauling wanted to bond with everyone.
  • Keynes was keen to question the marginal utility of this party.
  • Shakespeare could not decide whether to be or not to be at the party.
  • John Forbes Nash wanted to play a n-person zero sum game.
  • Pavlov brought his dog; which promptly chased Schrodinger's cat while Maxwell's Demon looked on.
  • Zeno of Elea came with two friends: Achilles and the tortoise.
  • Bill Gates came with windows.
  • Sir Humphrey Davy came with a miner's lamp.
  • Bertrand Russell kept wondering if the cook only cooks for the guests, who cooks for the cook?
  • Witten brought a present all tied up with superstrings.
  • Mendeleyev beautifully laid out the food on the periodic table.
  • Riemann hypothesised about who would arrive next; to which Newton retorted, 'hypotheses non fingo.'
  • Chadwick was handing out neutrons free of charge.
  • Everyone was amazed at Bell's inequality.
  • Watson and Crick danced the Double Helix.
  • While Fermat sang, 'Save the Last Theorem for me.'
  • On which Eddington remarked, 'I think there should be a law of Nature to prevent a man from behaving in this absurd way!
  • Gamow's Mr Tompkins argued with Dawkin's friend, the selfish Gene.
  • Russell and Whitehead insisted on checking the arithmetic in the bill for completeness and consistency.
  • Godel said it was incomplete and it can never be proved otherwise.
  • Epimenides the Cretan announced that all Cretans were liars.
  • Rontgen saw through everybody.
  • Descartes cogitated, 'I think I am drunk. Therefore I am at the party.'
  • Lotfi Zadeh thought this logic was a little fuzzy.
  • Degas, Monet and Renoir were there to make an impression.
  • Prof Abdus greeted everybody with a 'Salam'
  • Alan Guth discussed inflation with Alan Greenspan.
  • Vera Rubin showed off her rotation curves.
  • The law firm of Burbidge, Burbidge, Fowler and Hoyle was represented by all four Senior Partners.
  • Steven Weinberg arrived in the first three minutes.
  • Kip Thorne announced that he had taken out a year's subscription to Penthouse in the hope of seeing a naked singularity.
  • Penrose gently consoled him that Cosmic Censorship would make sure he didn't. Failing that, Mrs Thorne would.
  • MGM led a special unitary group discussion on the eight-fold way.
  • Music was provided by the Boris Zeldovich Quintet - Belinsky, Braginsky, Starobinsky; with Sakharov on drums.
  • Martin Gardner expounded on CRAP - the Completely Ridiculous Anthropic Principle.
  • Bondi, Gold and Hoyle expounded on the Perfect Cosmological Principle.
  • Minkowski announced that this was the last party he would be attending; because, henceforth, there would be no space and no time.
  • Lifshitz and Landau took a route through a classical field, Gauss and Weber got lost in a magnetic field, Hoyle and Narlikar came via the C-Field.
  • P C W Davies suggested that matter is a myth to which Samuel Johnson retorted, 'I refute it thus'.
  • Zwicky added that maybe all matter was dark.
  • Gribbin went in search of the Big Bang while Feynman lectured.
  • Barrow grumbled that his salary was a constant of nature.
  • Hubble worried that his constant was constantly changing.
  • Kekule came with his fiancée who showed off her benzene ring.
  • Heaviside insisted on eating a layered chocolate cake.
  • Galileo kept tossing peanuts out of the window to check the time of fall.
  • Archimedes could not make it as he was taking a bath.
  • Geiger kept writing down the guest count.
  • Hardy told Ramanujan that the taxi he came in had an interesting number 1729.
  • Szilard tried to convince Fermi that the Manhattan Project was not in Manhattan but in New Mexico.
  • Benjamin Franklin did not come as he went kite flying.
  • Alexander Graham Bell could not come as he was on a long-distance phone call to Marconi.
  • Darwin naturally selected the best dishes.
  • Mendel was interested only in wrinkled peas.
  • Edison thought the party was illuminating.
  • Morse said 'I'll be there on the dot. Can't stop now, must dash.'
  • Coriolis kept forcing people sideways.
  • Cantor came dressed as a transinfinite.
  • Glaser kept blowing bubbles in his beer.
  • Halley announced that he will return in 75 years.
  • Zweig's aces were disallowed by his peers.
  • Shannon could not communicate as there was too much noise.
  • Wheatstone had to cross a bridge to get to the party. and finally
  • There was a lady named Bright who left early and returned the previous night.
Any further party ideas? Help us grow this list ... send your idea to: click here to contact us

Special thanks to the following for contributing ideas:

Pervez Appoo from Sydney, Australia
Adrian Liu
Anton Skorucak

Science Quote

'I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.'

Albert Einstein

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