NME 3 - 1982
The Thermodynamics of Conversation - G. Riddihough
(page 19/19)
Now Magazine Expires

The Thermodynamics of Conversation

by G. Riddihough, ICSFS, Memb.S.H., L.S.I.

The thermodynamics of conversation has been a long neglected field among the sociophysicists and physical sociologists resident here at the Imperial College of Science and Technology. The following article is humbly put forward to clarify this important and rapidly expanding discipline.

It is an observed law of the Universe as we know it that Conversation cannot be created or destroyed but can only be changed from one form to another, eg rhetorical to satirical, obscene to abusive and so on. This is often referred to as the 1st law of Conversation, or the Conservation of Conversation.

This law, of course, does not exclude the concept of perpetual conversation but only limits it to the irrational, isolated systems, eg women, the square root of minus one, etc., where the parameters of the system cannot be determined in terms of the four dimensions of space and time and a complex "verbal diarrhoea" factor has to be included in the basic mathematical definition of the 1st law.

The second law of conversational thermodynamics states that "spontaneous conversations are those which, when carried out under suitable conditions, decrease rapidly in usefulness." Again, this is a law of nature, as many a student can qualitativly verify during lectures, tutorials and so forth. Of course, while usefulness of a conversation is decreasing, the disorder of the conversation is increasing by an amount proportional to the inverse of the sum of the I.Q.s of those involved. One point which becomes apparent from this is the inevitable "Conversational Doom" of the Universe, at which time no useful conversation can be continued.

The alarming aspect of this is t hat recent calculations have revealed that "C.D." is rapidly approaching and may indeed now be upon us. I find myself listening intently to others talking, hoping against hope that the figures are lying. Not so! The "Verbal Death" of the Universe is upon us - even now I am in a situation not here, but only at nine after M*A*S*H on off to Lord's.......... while......... onitasyoumightnotconsider....errrrh.....rrrrrrrr.......D......must.....shushmummyummmughhh.