Sunday, January 22, 2006
Monday, January 16, 2006
- Cartoon Law I: Any body suspended in space will remain in space
until made aware of its situation.
Daffy Duck steps off a cliff, expecting further pastureland.
He loiters in midair, soliloquizing flippantly, until he chances
to look down. At this point, the familiar principle of 32 feet
per second [squared] takes over.
- Cartoon Law II: Any body in motion will tend to remain in motion
until solid matter intervenes suddenly.
Whether shot from a cannon or in hot pursuit on foot, cartoon
characters are so absolute in their momentum that only a telephone
pole or an outsized boulder retards their forward motion absolutely.
Sir Isaac Newton called this sudden termination of motion the
- Cartoon Law III: Any body passing through matter will leave a
perforation conforming to its perimeter.
Also called the silhouette of passage, this phenomenon is the
specialty of victims of directed-pressure explosions and of
reckless cowards who are so eager to escape that they exit
directly through the wall of a house, leaving a cookie-cutout-
perfect hole. The threat of skunks or matrimony often catalyzes
- Cartoon Law IV: The time required for an object to fall twenty
stories is greater than or equal to the time it takes for whoever
knocked it off the ledge to spiral down twenty flights to attempt
to capture it unbroken.
Such an object is inevitable priceless, the attempt to catch it