The Science Lingo

Yesterday during a late night chat, while pondering about life:

S: Guys, now we have our majors and departments. We should start acting like scientists.
Me: What do you mean?
S: We’re too normal. We should be like… like introverted nerds without girlfriends.
Me: Well, some of us are halfway there.
S: You don’t get it. I mean, people should look at us and say “Look, scientists!”
R: How do you look at someone and tell that he’s an introverted nerd without a girlfriend?
S: Well, we need to talk differently. Like Sheldon.
R: Didn’t Sheldon have a girlfriend?
S: I don’t know. Did he?
Me: I think he did.

Nightfall makes us discuss trash. However, this is a rather curious issue which I have been paying attention to ever since I came to college. How close are our conversations to the science lingo portrayed on TV?

During our first year, while we were preparing for Inquivesta, we were frequently told to organize stuff that any layman can understand. Layman. So we’re not laymen? Obviously not, we’re master students! It was an interesting realization. At the same time, it’s a lot of responsibility. It’s like someone refers to muggles and you realize that you’re being called a wizard. Anyway, ‘layman’ is a term you get to hear often while referring to outsiders (yeah, I think it’s a bit arrogant too).

We spontaneously included some elementary science in their lingo over the last few semesters. This was mainly because they simplify communication, and sometimes because they’re mildly funny (PJs). Here are some examples:

  • “He’s returning garbage values.” Although this has more to do with computers than science, it generally refers to a person who is either drunk or out of his mind. Basically, it signifies that talking to the person is useless.
  • A very common situation while explaining house-building rules to a new Monopoly player.

    Me: You cannot build houses unevenly.
    A: Huh?
    Me: You cannot have 1 house on one red square and 3 houses on the other two.
    A: So I’ll have to build 1 house on each red square in one turn?
    Me: Not necessarily. You are okay as long as you build a house on the square with the least number of houses.
    A: But you just said that we can’t have unequal number of houses. How can…
    Me: Dude. Hund’s multiplicity rule.
    A: Oh.

  • During a literary club meeting, while suggesting places in Kolkata.

    S: You should visit 8B sometime.
    K: Why?
    S: Hot girls.
    A: But you need to know the exact spot.
    S: Yeah. You move few meters away from the spot and everything disappears.
    A: A real-life Dirac delta function.
    S: Definitely.
    K: Where’s the spot?

  • “All black bodies are hot.” A phrase often used to uplift the spirits of K and S after thorough sessions of friendly insulting.
  • “SN1 and SN2.” Used to classify people who change lovers. SN2 people are considered bigger jerks.
  • “Basis.” A set of objects, people, interests, etc which defines the dimensions of the life of a person. Interesting people generally have a large number of elements in their set.

This is a bit different from normal I guess. But we don’t spit out some complex terms or unnecessarily complicate simple things just because we can. Not yet, at least.

4 thoughts on “The Science Lingo


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