Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Next, Islamic chemistry?

At a conference in Qatar Muslim scientists and clerics discussed adoption of Mecca time.

No, they didn't mean turning the clock back 1400 years, just using Mecca time to replace GMT. Because, of course, Mecca is the one true and real center of the world (accept no substitutions!) and is in line with the magnetic north pole.

Oh, dear. I knew that they had their own human rights, different from the regular human rights and highly reminiscent of the old untranslatable Russian joke about democracy and democratization [1]. But damn, now they have their own magnetic north pole too. Different from your regular Western imperialist magnetic pole, and apparently stationary.

Somebody should tell them the pole keeps moving. Imagine the endless hours of fun we could all have watching them put the city on little wheels (or, more traditionally, camels) and try to move it around.

The actual Western imperialist magnetic pole was at 82.7° N 114.4° W in 2005. If Mecca were at that longitude and its own latitude it would be located in the Pacific Ocean a bit off Mexico's West Coast. While this idea does have just a little bit of morbid attraction, don't try this at home, kids, or at least purchase sufficient number of lifeboats before trying.

Next step: Islamic chemistry. The best bombs in the world can be produced by mixing carrots and peas. I am sure this is written in some holy book somewhere.

1) The Russian joke from the democratization times:

Чем отличается демократия от демократизации? - Тем же, чем канал от канализации.

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