I finished Neal Stephenson’s Snow Crash a few weeks ago. At some stage I’d like to read it again, as some of the theology references flew past way over my head. But thoroughly excellent nonetheless.
Last week I started reading Bill Bryson’s A Short History Of Nearly Everything. The opening chapters talk about the creation of the universe, and I couldn’t help but think of the Monty Python Galaxy song
“So remember when you’re feeling very small and insecure
How amazingly unlikely is your birth
And pray that there’s intelligent life somewhere up in space
‘Cos there’s bugger all down here on Earth.”
So I read about the Big Bang, the way the universe grew into what it is today, the infinitesimal likelihood of the events that have resulted in (allegedly) intelligent life. Then I looked up from the book, around the train, and had this strange feeling of inconsequentiality and pointlessness.
Hmmm. It passed after a few minutes.