Saturday 15 October 2011

Oil and Water and the Arrow of Time

As you may well know, time is just a dimension like the three spatial ones, so it's odd that we have to keep going in the same direction. The rule, apparently, is that time goes in the direction where entropy, or disorder, increases - e.g. when you spill something it goes all over the place instead of landing in a neat pile, or when you drop a piece of toast there will be some butter on the bread and some on the floor (this is the real reason it lands butter side down), or when you pour two liquids into the same container they eventually mix evenly without being stirred.
Oil and water would appear to contradict this rule. Pour them together and they stay apart. Shake them up into an emulsion and after a time they will separate, the disorder actually decreasing.

I have come to the conclusion that the only possible explanation for this is that oil travels backwards through time, so that from its point of view, its entropy is increasing. Clearly it's the oil that's special not the water or the mixture, since a mixture of oil and a different liquid will behave the same, and those liquids behave perfectly normally the rest of the time. Clearly therefore, the oil takes the other liquid back through time with it.
I propose to build a time machine by filling a vat with oil and climbing in. By means of meditation, I will attempt to allow my mind to become one with the oil, and when I succeed I shall naturally begin to travel back through time with the oil. As we reach the point where I climbed in, my physical self will climb out and go on with its business, an empty shell, while my mind continues to travel back through time.
If you never hear any more from me, assume that it worked. Or I drowned.

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