Monday, August 18, 2008

Bongo-playing Womanizer

One of the best-seller books by Richard Feynman [1].

Whom do you think of to hear the word "bongo-playing womanizer"? Do you say, "Richard Feynman"? Yes, he was referred to as such in an article of Physics World blog [2]. In the article, Matin Durrani, Editor of Physics World, reports on all the gossip of the 25th International Conference on Low-Temperature Physics (LT25) held in Amsterdam from 6th to 13th, August, 2008.

Durani writes that the plenary sessions of the final day included a few words from Joe Vinen from the University of Birmingham in the UK — perhaps the only surviving physicist from the LT6 conference in Leiden 50 years ago, and continues as follows. 'Vinen recalled how the multi-talented Richard Feynman himself actually put in an appearance at the Leiden meeting to present his insights into superfluidity in liquid helium. Strangely, though, Feynman failed to up at any other sessions. The reason? The bongo-playing womanizer had chosen to enjoy the pleasures of what used to be called (in the bad old days) the conference “ladies program”.'

Why were those "the bad old days"? Oh, is the ladies program now called "the spouses program" or something like that to be politically correct? Anyway, those must have been the good days to Feynman. — He would care neither about these words nor about the words, "the bongo-playing womanizer." What do you care what other people think, Mr. Feynman? —
  1. R. P. Feynman, What Do You Care What Other People Think? (Norton, 2001).
  2. M. Durrani, Feynman 50 years ago, Physics World Web site (August 13, 2008).

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