July 17, 2020 – 5:30 p.m. look
This Twitter question draws wide circles
Who among you remembers the famous physical thought experiment of Schrödinger’s cat, which Sheldon Cooper, among others, explained to us in “The Big Bang Theory”? A similar question is now circulating on Twitter: If you let chicken soup sit in a pressure cooker on the balcony for three and a half years without ever opening the pot, is there anything alive in it and is it dangerous ?
#Schrödinger’s chicken soup
This not-so-hypothetical scenario makes the rounds in a series of tweets from Twitter user DontDegradeDebs aka Debora Antmann. She explains that years ago her sister had parked the pot with a snap lid on her balcony. It was clear to Debora: her sister has to clean up this mess too! But now, more than three years have passed, the siblings no longer speak to each other, and the cleanup is left to the creator of the tweet. If only there weren’t so many unanswered questions!
Is it dangerous to move the pot?
“Dear folks, I need your Twitter trickery,” Debora begins in the post, in which she describes the “rather disgusting, but possibly very real storyline.” Questions she asks herself (and other Twitter users):
“1. After 3 years, how much pressure do you think is in this chicken soup pressure cooker? (I tried to google it and it’s probably the only thing that doesn’t have a answer on the Internet)
2. Do you think moving the pan is dangerous?
3. Would you open it and if so, how?
4. What would you do?
5. Disinherit my sister (nothing to inherit) or it’s my fault if I do it at all
let it come this far?”
And the answers are not long in coming!
Means against Corona? Dangerous projectile? Or just rude?
Some Twitter users are coming up with the craziest plans to safely open the potentially dangerous projectile. “Put the thing somewhere on a piece of land and shoot it – I don’t know why that should be the least dangerous solution. But these suggestions came up several times,” Debora reports in a contribution to radio station Deutschlandfunk Nova. Just throw? The Berliner Stadtreinigung advises against this. For their part, the volunteer firefighters do not even want to know what is going on in the pot, as Debora reports on Twitter.
But many Twitter users are curious: what if the antidote to Corona was hidden in the pot? A new life form that invaded the jar and at one point besieged the whole balcony for itself?
Donate to science?
Debora herself has new ideas about what to do with the potty – largely due to viral interest in her own version of Schrödinger’s Cat. Maybe she can just donate the jar and its contents to a research lab? “The pot maker has made contact and would also like to solve the mystery of #Schrödinger’s chicken soup,” she wrote.
In the meantime, the manufacturer Fissler has opened the soup. Here we reveal what emerged.
By the way, as a reminder, Schrödinger’s cat is a paradox used to illustrate a problem in quantum mechanics. In it, Schrödinger asks whether a cat left to fend for itself in a box with an unstable atomic nucleus is dead or alive. And the not quite real, but somehow plausible theory is that, as long as you don’t look, she’s dead AND alive at the same time. True to the motto: What I don’t know doesn’t bother me. So, at this point, chicken soup is both dangerous and harmless, from a purely quantum mechanical perspective, and both edible and really, really disgusting…