I like to party, and by party I mean read books

by Chris Hawkins @

I started going to a pub quiz recently, not altogether that interesting in and of itself, but it re-awakened something in me, and not just my overly competitive side either.

Certain questions came up which I knew I should know the answer to, or certainly had known the answer in the past, but which I now had no idea about - as an aside, I was most annoyed at myself for not being able to remember Viggo Mortensen's Aragorn in a picture round...Aragorn!. "What is the opposite of oxidation?" err, de-oxidation? Cringeworthy. (Reduction, as in redox reactions if any other person might care.) I then read a Brian Cox book (Forces of Nature) and wished I'd read it when I was 15 and actually remembered a lot of the physics and chemistry involved.

I've started re-reading old science textbooks just to try and remember what is essentially all the pretty basic science I've forgotten about. I've also so far read a book on Shakespeare - always came up on the quiz in some form - although that was more about the person than the plays. The plays will have to come next, hopefully I find some way of making that more exciting than it used to seem in English classes.

The English monarchy, or more specifically the history of the monarchy always seems to come up a lot too. I've been reading a series which started as a brief history but as time has gone on has become a far more in-depth look at our past rulers. The Tudors - whom I had to study when I was about 10 - starts getting a bit more hard work. Far too much religion involved, but then that's the whole point isn't it? I'll have to do prime ministers and US presidents next.

I did try and watch Baby Driver when I had a free night, but I got half an hour in wasn't at all interested. This entirely coincidentally happened just as the latest SpaceX Falcon Heavy was launching off its pad at Cape Canaveral. Watching the boosters land simultaneously side-by-side was one of the most impressive things I've ever seen. I'd always thought about doing it in the past, just because Space is awesome, but I'm now carrying out a little side-project for myself of looking into the history of space flight and rocketry. Last night, I stumbled across the rocket equation for the first time. It would appear I am now quite literally trying to teach myself rocket science. I should get a life really.

I'll leave you with a line from Forces of Nature that really stuck with me: "there are too many people in this world who want to be right, and too few who just want to know".