There were 183 of us freshmen, and a bowling ball hanging from the three-story ceiling to just above the floor. Feynman walked in and, without a word, grabbed the ball and backed against the wall with the ball touching his nose. He let go, and the ball swung slowly 60 feet across the room and back — stopping naturally just short of crushing his face. Then he took the ball again, stepped forward, and said: “I wanted to show you that I believe in what I’m going to teach you over the next two years.”
- Michael Scott, as quoted in “Caltech Grad’s Donation Honors Late Professor” in The Los Angeles Times (12 March 1989)
As you may (or may not) now, I am a huge fan of Richard Feynman, and when times are as bad as now, I often turn to him (his books, I mean) for solace. Have you read Surely, You’re Joking Mr. Feynman lately? Well, neither have I. Time to read it again, I guess…
3 thoughts on “On Feynman”
He was a brilliant man… I first heard about him during the Atlantis shuttle disaster reports/findings… I can still picture him pulling the rubber o-ring out of the glass of ice water and shattering it… Such a clear mind!
Feyman was the man. Modern bengaliz whould get a shock if he just walked by…breaking just another myth! No need for much advertised myth busters if you have Feyman around!