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Demian Suvorov
Demian Suvorov

Strange Days



In the past two months, three different particles have been discovered, and explaining them has proved a challenge for theorists. Although not as extreme as the above example, each of these new particles has an unusually elongated lifetime. Two of them are 'mesons', each containing a strange anti-quark and a charm quark (the fourth quark type)2,3. The reason for their metastability is understood, but their detailed nature and dynamics remain to be resolved. The third particle4 is a member of the 'baryon' family of particles that also includes the proton and neutron. But, unlike the proton and neutron, this particle has some strange-quark content. In fact, unlike any other baryon known, it has overall one unit of 'positive strangeness'. It is an enigma. The quark model that now underpins the standard model was developed, in part, under the assumption that such things do not exist. And although it may be possible to interpret this particle as a combination of four quarks (two up, two down) and a strange anti-quark (providing that unit of positive strangeness), the challenge is to explain also why this 'pentaquark' does not fall apart more quickly.




Strange Days



"I'd use this even if I was doing my Motown sessions," he remarks. "I'd developed it myself, and later on I also had a drum platform made, suspended off the floor to get a little more depth to the sound. We'd always try different things: John might put his wallet on the snare, and we'd always tune the drums for the song. Sometimes I would have a U47 positioned maybe eight feet from the kit and heavily compressed to open it up a bit, but there weren't a whole lot of games. The console was very open-sounding and the mics were pretty bright in those days, so we'd just add a little bit of EQ and that was it."


A friend of ours runs a spot down in Asheville, North Carolina. He spends all year gearing up for leaf season. The Blue Ridge Parkway runs past Asheville about 2 miles from his place, and each year, several million folks drive past his restaurant while looking at the Fall leaves. His staff is all-hands-on-deck, they work 24/7, and serve a ton of people. That 10 days or so helps float him during those snowy days when nobody shows up to eat. It allows him to pay his folks when things get slow.


Things like wormholes, time travel, students becoming invisible, and inexplicable magnetic attractions are everyday occurrences in STRANGE DAYS AT BLAKE HOLSEY HIGH. Luckily, the students in the show's science club use the scientific method to investigate the mysterious happenings. But the science club at Blake Holsey High (nicknamed "Black Hole High" by the students) doesn't limit itself to test tubes and Bunsen burners. New girl Josie (Emma Taylor-Isherwood), popular Vaughn (Robert Clark), conspiracy buff Lucas (Michael Seater), type-A Corrine (Shadia Simmons), whiz kid Marshall (Noah Reid), and their advisor, Professor Z (Jeffrey Douglas), discover that their prep school is some sort of magnet for paranormal occurrences and mysterious strangers with secrets and hidden agendas. All the strange happenings seem to be connected to a local scientist named Victor (who just happens to be Vaughn's father) and his company, Pearadyne Industries, where Vaughn's mother disappeared in a strange accident 15 years ago.


The series makes an attempt to bring in scientific concepts (magnetism, gravity, the light spectrum, etc.), but the show's real attraction is its spooky sense of mystery. The characterization isn't incredibly deep, and the kids seem more or less interchangeable. But there's plenty of action to keep viewers involved, and a lot to wonder about. What is Victor really up to? What's the strange floating ball that seems to be the source of his power? How does the janitor know so much about what's going on, and why won't he explain anything?


Families can talk about the concept of reality and fantasy and the characters'. Do the students make good decisions with their knowledge or abuse their powers? What appeals to kids about the show -- mystery or science? Parents can encourage kids to continue their love of strange stories with a trip to the library or a (supervised) Internet search about the history and happenings of their own school or town. 041b061a72


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