Gesture drawings of three (now-deceased) Nobel laureates, from scenes ca. 1975-76:

  • William Fowler — high-energy glow in his eye, fringe of gray beard, spotlight glaring off his polished dome ... at 8:00 a.m., bouncing across the stage at the front of a lecture hall, teaching "Introductory Nuclear Astrophysics" to a somnolent audience of grad students and advanced undergrads—who wish only that the course were offered at a civilized hour. A muscle twitch as one student falls asleep knocks an empty coke bottle off his desk. It ricochets down the stairs; everyone startles into wakefulness. Willy doesn't miss a beat.
  • Richard Feynman — folding himself into a front-row seat at the physics department seminar, poised to leap. Whenever a visiting scholar covers a vugraph transparency with a sheet of paper and prepares to slide it down, revealing one line at a time, Dick snatches the paper away. "I didn't come here to see a strip-tease!" he growls, in a heavy Brooklyn accent.
  • S. Chandrasekhar — sharp eyes, dark skin, short gray hair, coat and tie ... attentive as a vanfull of relativity grad students take turns at the blackboard, each stumbling through an explanation of his research project. Chandra is at the Santa Barbara Center for Theoretical Physics, and Kip Thorne has brought some protégés to meet the great astrophysicist and to practice their presentational skills. Chandra has a polite, perfect question for every student, no matter how confused the talk. A gentleman and a scholar. (See also RedundancyRedundancy, the ^zhurnal entry of 23 April 1999, for the apt Chandraism, "It doesn't make one stupid to hear again what one already knows!" And see [1] for other Chandra parables.)

Sunday, September 24, 2000 at 17:11:21 (EDT) = 2000-09-24

TopicProfiles - TopicPersonalHistory - TopicScience

(correlates: RedundancyRedundancy, AlteredStates, NotCare, ...)