Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Speaking of quantum mechanics . . .

When I picked Primo up from school a few weeks ago, I asked him what he did that day and he replied, "I worked on time travel."

"Oh that's interesting," I said. 

"No, really, " he went on, "For real. Harry and I are going to go back in time. With binary physics."

"Where did you learn about binary physics?" I asked him. I had never heard of such a thing. 

"From a documentary on Albert Einstein of course," he replied. Its his new thing to say "of course" after every phrase now. David thinks its obnoxious and I love it, probably because I'm really obnoxious too. He doesn't say it with an implicit "Duh," more like he's saying, "Naturally."

"But when did you watch a documentary on Albert Einstein?" I pressed further. 

"Oh, at Nana and Babbo's house," Primo said. That was surprising. Usually he only learned bad words and lousy habits there. But OK. I could accept this. 

"Well I wish I knew something about binary physics to help you," I said.

"Oh that's OK," he said, "I know what I'm doing."

Since then, he's been talking to everyone who will listen about binary particles and time travel. At a communion party for my cousin's daughter a few weeks ago, he talked my uncle's ear off about it. And a few days later, a package arrived for Primo from It was a book, gifted by my uncle,  called Six Not-So-Easy Pieces by Richard Feynman and the subtitle read: "Einstein's Relativity, Symmetry, and Space-Time." You lost me at "not-so-easy" but Primo instantly curled up and began reading. Occasionally he'd ask me what something meant - things like "pedantic" and "escapade," but for the most part he charged through nobly, though I can't imagine he discerned much meaning from it. 

A few days later we went to a kid's birthday party when David came over to me and said, "All I know is I just passed Primo talking to somebody's dad and the only bit of the conversation I caught was Primo saying, 'Speaking of quantum mechanics . . . '"

Am I am as smart as a second grader? The answer is clearly, "No."