Jack LaLanne

jack lalanne

The father of American fitness, Jack Lalanne, passed away this week at the age of 96. It reminded me of the day I met Jack for an interview, about 15 years ago at his home in Morro Bay. I dug out this old slide of us sitting in his living room while I probed him with pointless questions like any green college journalist would. He covered by filling the time with stories about Hollywood’s old guard, or advice on how to stay as healthy as he did with exercise and healthy eating habits.

What a cool guy. I hope they have a big gym and lots of fresh vegetables wherever he’s gone. – Mr. Weekndr

Nice set of … nuclear reactors

A pair of rotund nuclear reactors near San Onofre, Calif. They’re so perky.

Fact You Should Know: Large Hadron Collider

“…it also could unmask the long-sought Higgs boson particle, one of the most elusive and mysterious objects since the Yeti.”

L.A. Times, Dec. 1, 2009

I had no idea that the Yeti was one of the most elusive and mysterious objects in all of science. Surely the human genome is more mysterious. Or perhaps even water on the moon?

Nonetheless, the ¬†LA Times writes that scientists in Europe this week made a successful test run of the fabled Large Hadron Collider. Like something out of a science fiction film, the super-futuristic “particle accelerator” is being built to “recreate conditions that existed shortly after the Big Bang.”

Here’s how it works: the Hadron Collider sends two proton beams¬†speeding in opposite directions through a 17-mile circular tunnel located 300 feet underground. When the beams collide at near the speed of light, the collision is expected to generate 14 trillion electron volts.

The LA Times surmises that the invention could “produce some of the greatest scientific discoveries of the 21st century.” Critics have feared that if it works it could create a black hole and vaporize the Universe, or something like that.

For these reasons and more, the Large Hadron Collider becomes the first-ever Weekndr Fact You Should Know.