Written by Geofizz
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Topics: Earth, Media

Wednesday, 21 July 2004

image for Isaac Newton Blamed for Earth's End

In a dramatic and hastily convened press conference in Abingdon yesterday, famous planetary scientist Dr Alfred von Schnorkelpliers, 34, announced to the world's media that the world would stop spinning soon.

It is all, he says, due to a little-known law of physics - known only at this time as "The Conservation of Angular Momentum". It seems that every time we launch material into space, build skyscrapers, or even get up in the morning, we are moving mass away from the centre of the earth. This increases the "Moment of Inertia" of the Earth.

In itself, an increased Moment of Inertia would not cause major human suffering, but unfortunately ever since the work of 17th century scientists such as the infamous Isaac Newton, 84 but dead, the universe has had to conserve Angular Momentum. This is the product of the Moment of Inertia and Angular Velocity - and if the former goes up, the latter must come down!

Spoof.com science editor, Keith the Intern, 19, GCSE Physics (grade B), was in Abingdon for the momentous announcement. "Oh yeah," he said, "it's like that experiment with the guy on the swivel chair holding a bicycle wheel."

"Oh, hang on, no maybe it's when the ice skater starts spinning, then pulls their arms in. But in reverse. Yeah, definitely that one, " he added afterwards.

Dr Schnorkelpliers explained that, "Basically, there just is only so much Angular Momentum to go round," adding, "Get it?" then falling off his chair, laughing uncontrollably. After regaining his composure, he went on to remind the audience of the deep space probes such as Voyager that are still speeding away from Earth.

The science community has been studying Dr Schnorkelpliers' theory since the shock announcement. They have confirmed that, taking into account the fact that humans have launched objects into the infinite reaches of space, it is hard to escape the conclusion that the world will indeed stop spinning some time in the future.

As the news sunk in at the Abingdon press conference, and the assembled journalists started stampeding in a state of blind panic, only the Daily Mail correspondent remained behind, quizzing Dr Schnorkelpliers on the implications for house prices for any countries caught on the dark side when the Earth stops.

World governments have so far not been quick to act. UN interpreters, most of whom did languages at university, have spent the last few hours looking up all the vocabulary they need. Thankfully, the United States has bypassed all those tedious, time-consuming discussions. However, President Bush is currently unable to decide between the two policies so far formulated: a mission into deep space to lasso Voyager and bring it back to Earth before it gets too far, or the declaration of a War on Angular Momentum.

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The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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