Schroedinger’s turd

I have to admit, the word “turd” is one of my favorite English nouns. Well, I don’t use it often, almost never, but I like it’s simplicity. It’s simple, crisp, and gets to the point with only four letters. In my mother language the same noun requires twelve letters!

So, let me take you back to my early years, a time back in the past where I considered myself as young. My parents had a cat. Well, they had several cats since the mice hunter somehow got replaced all the time if a cat had lost the trial of courage to cross the street in front of our home. And, for some reason these cats lost all their seven lives at once. Even if only one letter separates cat and car, the weight difference seemed to consume more than one life in case of an impact. But lets focus on the still living object. Such a cat is a rather lazy creature. Some specimen are even too lazy to walk to the designated box to take a dump. This furry creature had fun to place aforementioned turds at special places, like the living room carpet. And it wasn’t always laziness, it had been bitchiness too at times. This claw-equipped evilness did know exactly what she is allowed to do and what not.

After such an incident my mom usually tried to convince cat-woman that the turd location is sub-optimal and removed the corpus delicti. Now, the cat learned somehow to avoid the post-turd-speech. Simple trick, just drop the landmine when mom wasn’t around. Bad idea, since I have been lazy too and tried to avoid to come to close to the little brown mountain. But nonetheless the excrement brought my organ of smell into trouble. I have no idea what happens within such a cat, but the result is smelling breath-taking. Unfortunately time forced a decision soon, which is either passing out or resuming breathing. Interestingly the option to remove the emission source didn’t come to my mind 😉

So, the misery was huge. What to do? Exactly, becoming creative. So what did I do, I simply placed a bucket over the core of the harassment. Simple trick to move the turd outside the range of vision and smell. I was so proud of myself and I never understood why mom didn’t like this approach 😉

Now, a few decades later I know why. I simply missed a step in the process. Let me explain. Some time ago a brilliant mind lived. He answered to the name of Erwin. Looks like mom Schroedinger liked this name. But anyway, this guy tried to plan the perfect crime. Simple approach. If the accuser can’t prove that the murder victim is really dead, there will be no prosecution. Brilliant! And he did some experiments regarding to this, e.g. with cats. And he made astonishing progress. He almost reached his goal, but then curiousness won and he looked into the box, which destroyed the perfect crime. But (raised index finger), for some time the cat was simultaneously dead and alive. Awesome.

Now let’s apply this phenomena of quantum mechanics to my turd bucket. if you inject fly eggs into the brown pulpy material in pre-bucket state, then you end up with a similar effect. The emerging flies under the bucket might consume the turd to a certain extent over time, which reduces the typical turd effluvium (Lets ignore the smell emitted by dead or alive flies for simplicity reasons). So, to a certain point in time the turd is simultaneously smelling and not smelling. Visually spoken and simplified, half the turd has been smelling. And now think about it. This way the smell under the bucket has been reduced by 50%! How awesome is that! And now think further. Lets bring an iterative process into the game. Yeah, bisection! Just a few iterations will be required to bring the smell below human odor detection threshold. The non-smelling cat turd, that’s probably worth a patent. But unfortunately I didn’t know these simple physical correlations to the point in time I needed the knowledge. It would have been so easy if my mom would have taught me quantum mechanics instead of grumbling about my bucket approach.

Physics is awesome, isn’t it?