Aliens, Ikea & Work

11 Dec

I am 93% sure that some of my tenant are aliens. (Well, at least this one pair is.)

It’s the way they stand there with their too-perfect posture, all the while fidgeting as if they don’t quite fit in their newly acquired human skins that make me uneasy. This one man comes in every month with his daughter to drop off his rent check. I assume that she is not in school as she should be because she long ago graduated high school on her birth planet. That was their first mistake. You should always keep up appearances if you want to go unnoticed. *tisk, tisk* She is not like a normal child of ten, though she looks like it on the surface. She is too behaved. She exudes the wisdom of several decades and not just one. She doesn’t flick the light switch off and on like normal children, nor does she peek out the blinds to watch the cats playing on the front step of the CPA’s office across the street. Instead, she looks at me as if I am a specimen, as something she would like to poke at while sequestered in a Petri dish.

Together, she and her father circle the tiny waiting room of our office as I process their payment. They look the room over as if they are calculating it’s potential. Disregarding the peeling wallpaper and torn, orange leather chairs, ideas spark to life behind their eyes. Stainless steel everything, of course. Much easier to maintain and ultra hygienic to boot. “Yes,” they say to their self, “This would make a fine interrogation room. Perhaps a brainwashing station even.”

They smirk to each other as I print their receipt. I imagine that they will retreat to their run-down, 1974 Ford pickup parked outside and edit the blueprints of our office that they keep in the glove box. With such ideas dancing in their heads, they want to write it all down before they forget. I wouldn’t even be surprised if they used lighting from Ikea to set the mood for their future base. Ikea lighting is so space age, don’t you think?

I thank them for their payment and they reply with their customary, monotone grunt as they slowly make their retreat out the side door. They never say anything to me. I wonder if it is because they have yet to master our language or if they are offended by its simplicity and refuse to lower their self to our level.

They’ll be back next month, coming in just a few days late in a veiled attempt to appear normal. Psh. Right. Normal. You’re not fooling me.



2 Responses to “Aliens, Ikea & Work”

  1. big daddy December 17, 2009 at 6:29 PM #

    you both need a better therapist

  2. Dr. Sheldon Cooper December 12, 2009 at 10:57 AM #

    The theory of whether these tenants are aliens could easily be paralleled to that of Schrödinger’s cat in the famous illustration of the principle in quantum theory of superposition, proposed by Erwin Schrödinger in 1935. Schrödinger’s cat serves to demonstrate the apparent conflict between what quantum theory tells us is true about the nature and behavior of matter on the microscopic level and what we observe to be true about the nature and behavior of matter on the macroscopic level.

    Using Schrödinger’s (theoretical) experiment in this modern theory: We place an alien into a steel chamber, along with a means to allow the alien to transform into a human likeness. Of course, the alien does not have to transform to the human likeness, but it has that option and ability. However, the means of transformation is only viable during the test period, in the steel chamber.

    Because the alien is in the steel chamber during this time, you, as the observer cannot know whether or not the alien has chosen to maintain its alien appearance or to transform into a human likeness. Since you cannot know, the alien is considered to be both alien-like and human-like in appearance, according to quantum law, in a superposition of states. It is only when you open the chamber and learn the likeness of the alien that the superposition is lost, and the alien becomes one or the other (alien-like or human-like). This situation is sometimes called quantum indeterminacy: the observation or measurement itself affects an outcome, so that the outcome as such does not exist unless the measurement is made. (That is, there is no single outcome unless it is observed.)

    We know that superposition actually occurs at the subatomic level, because there are observable effects of interference, in which a single particle is demonstrated to be in multiple locations simultaneously. What that fact implies about the nature of reality on the observable level (aliens, for example, as opposed to electrons) is one of the stickiest areas of quantum physics. Schrödinger himself is rumored to have said, later in life, that he wished he had never met discovered this theory of superposition. So, whether those tenants were conceivably aliens relies on the outcome of your interpretation and belief of the observer’s paradox.

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