38 thoughts on “It’s Probably True

  1. I thought Scalzi’s Law would be: “Any sufficiently delicious food is indistinguishable from bacon.”

    It has the added bonus of being true.

  2. And the referent in Godwin’s law was a vegetarian! Which means that it touches on this new law not at all.

  3. “I thought Scalzi’s Law would be: “Any sufficiently delicious food is indistinguishable from bacon.”

    That’s Scalzi’s Second Law.

    The Third Law could be: “Anything is funnier with bacon taped to it.”

  4. If you’re going to have multiple Scalzi’s Laws, you have to formulate the Zeroeth Law — the underlying assumption without which the following laws are unnecessary.

    For example, the Zeroeth Law for Newton’s Law is “There is such a thing as ‘mass.’” For Thermodynamics, it is “There is such a thing as ‘temperature.’”

    For Scalzi’s Laws, the Zeroeth Law is obviously “There is such a thing as ‘bacon.”” Or for those purists who don’t mind a negative statement, “There is no such thing as ‘too much bacon.’”

    Dr. Phil

  5. @9

    Consider this the official request for a photo of Scalzi with Bacon taped to himself.

    I will throw in some cash towards the Athena College Fund if she manages to tape bacon to her dad and takes a picture without his knowledge.

  6. How about a picture of John Scalzi rendered in bacon. Or if you are mor artistic a sculpture of John Scalzi made out of bacon.

  7. I’m sick of all you baconazis and your belief in the mastermeat!

    (Does that mean this thread is over or do I have to mention H-word? And by the H-word I mean “Hickory”)

  8. #4: As tasty as bacon is, I am sure, to Scalzi, I suspect not even he would proclaim that all tasty foods taste the same. Bacon taste like chocolate? That’s heretical to those who love chocolate, and those who love bacon, and to those who love the taste of both, I suspect.

    However, the law as he phrased it, I have no issue with, and agree it is probably true.

    Also, I have heard those who love bacon say that not all porcine products have the same great taste.

  9. So what is the vegan equivalent of this law? I’m guessing “all food with tofu in it tastes almost but not entirely unlike meat.” But that’s just my experience after being cruelly tricked into trying “tasty” vegan products that included deep-fried tofu.

    Not that I have a problem with veganism; just people trying to convince me that animal-free products taste like meat. That is not one of the advantages of a vegan life-style.

    Though bacon-wrapped tofu tastes like bacon.

  10. Bacon-wrapped tofu? I must try.

    Also, Dr Phil, the Zeroth Law of Thermodynamics is definitely not what you think it is. It’s that two objects in thermal equilibrium with a third object are in thermal equilibrium with each other. In other words, if you let your bacon come to room temperature while sitting in a skillet, and you let your chocolate come to room temperature sitting in the same skillet, then the bacon won’t melt the chocolate since no energy flows.

    Whereas, if you cook bacon, you can then cook pasta and toss in bacon and eggs, resulting in a delicious bacony spaghetti carbonara. The pasta cooks the eggs and keeps the bacon warm since the three are not in thermal equilibrium.

    I so need to figure out how to work this into a lecture this semester…

  11. It’s been a tradition for me to easter-egg my work by putting a dalek someplace in every render (even if it’s replacing a bolt that ends up 2×2 pixels with Derek the Dalek).

    From now on, John, in your honour Derek’s place will be taken by a strip of bacon. For your greater glory!

    I’m still putting a fez on it, though. Some things are tradition

  12. Mark, I’m disappointed by your callous rejection of Dalekism in favor of this new fangled Orthodox Baconism.

  13. agm:

    I would love to have a Thermo class with a prof that used bacon to illustrate the basic principles. Its on the schedule for the fall. Since the book is “Chemical & Biomedical Applications of…”, I’m betting bacon will not be in it.

    Also, I have to amend my corollary: “All vegan food with tofu in it tastes almost but not entirely like meat.”

    Otherwise I would have obviously falsified it with my bacon-wrapped tofu example.

  14. agm: And you’ve just defined what temperature means. “It’s that two objects in thermal equilibrium with a third object are in thermal equilibrium with each other. In other words, if you let your bacon come to room temperature while sitting in a skillet, and you let your chocolate come to room temperature sitting in the same skillet, then the bacon won’t melt the chocolate since no energy flows.” i.e., they are all at the same temperature. If such a condition could not occur, then there’d be no definition of temperature which would allow the regular enumerated laws of thermodynamics to stand as written. Hence my statement of the Zeroeth Law of Thermodynamics. (grin)

    Dr. Phil

  15. agm: The secret is not to work bacon into a lecture, it’s to work bacon into an exam. My first Physics exam this summer featured Iron Man, for example. (grin)

    Dr. Phil

  16. Dr Phil,

    I have to disagree. Given that it has already happened once, your statement that one has to have the Zeroth Law to enumerate the other laws of thermodynamics just doesn’t make sense. Instead, it serves to complete the bridge between thermo and dynamics by adding critical theoretical structure, a bit analogous to how Maxwell’s work gave us electromagnetic wave propagation.

    More usefully, a principle that says energy flows from bacon to chocolate because of a temperature difference cannot define the concept of temperature because of the way it relies on you having an independent definition of temperature, or else you’re begging the question. That’s where Professor Kelvin, his predecessors, and his contemporaries save the day.

  17. agm: The statement that two (or more) things in thermal contact are at the same temperature is a statement on thermal equilibrium. Conversely, if they are not at the same temperature, then they not in equilibrium and there will be a net heat flow — tending towards a new equilibrium, unless additional heat Q or work W is added or extracted. If you cannot define a temperature difference, then we wouldn’t have the laws of thermodynamics as they are defined now.

    I’m not sure we’re arguing here. (grin)

    Dr. Phil

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