Famous Physicists Whose Thighs have Touched Mine

Here’s a bit of name-dropping. (I’m hoping to impress all you quantum physics new age fans and groupies out there.)

Famous Physicists I Have Met:

Fritjof Capra, author of The Tao of Physics (He came over to my folks’ house for dinner. Then we all crammed into the car as my dad drove us to Laguna Beach‚ CA and my leg touched Fritjof’s the whole way there. This was around 1974 – I was about 16 and totally thrilled!)

Werner Heisenberg, of Uncertainty Principle fame. (I’m certain it was in Schladming, Austria, but I’m uncertain whether I was 3 or 4 years old). Coz the uncertainty principle states that you can know position, or future momentum, but not both, at least not precisely!)

Roger Penrose (No interesting anecdote. But it still counts.)

and lots more, like Nobel laureates Fred Reines (of neutrino fame), and Emilio Segre (house-sat for him), as well as David Ruelle (coined the term “strange attractors” – I think my friends and I broke into his house and short-sheeted his bed in 1970, in Bures-sur-Yvette, France, or was that a different mathematician?), and countless others.

How did I meet these guys? Thanks to my dad, Herr Professor Meinhard “Hardy” Mayer – a mathematical physicist string theorist who hobnobbed with super-nerds from CERN to MIT to Berkeley to his home turf at UC Irvine. RIP – Rest in Potential, Hardy!

Famous Physicists I Want to Meet:

Shevek of Anarres.



  1. I think this article would make a neat little song- like my song- “How I didn’t meet the Beatles.”

  2. so cool Elma! although I know of none of these men,I know how fun it is to name drop! My father was a motorcycle mechanic in So Cal back in the late 60’s early 70’s and he worked on some celebs bikes! fun fun fun!



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