Category Archives: The Port for Thought

Bubble anti-bubble toil and trouble!

The property bubble. Sorry… apologies… we are all a little ‘bubbled-out’. Not a day goes by without yet another scaremongering report on the UK housing bubble and the inevitable armageddon following the great burst. Society as we know it will be annihilated: It will, without doubt, be the end of civilisation.

Magda George, the editor-in-chief of this journal, is troubled. She pointed out to Pinkers that if there is such a thing as a ‘bubble’, surely there must also be an opposite. After all, the opposite of inflation is deflation. Good point, Pinkers thought, and encouraged her to do some further research. And many beef bones later, she came up with the below. Not wishing to be accused of plagiarism, she insisted on revealing the original source for this brilliant definition – courtesy anitbubble.org:

“A regular bubble is basically a little sphere of air, enclosed by a thin film of water. Bubbles can form using any two substances with suitable properties. A film of liquid, enclosing a pocket of gas. An antibubble, on the other hand, is a pocket of liquid trapped by a film of gas.

Seriously. You’ve almost definitely seen antibubbles before. Though you very likely won’t have realised it. Have a look, the next time you fill the kitchen sink or run a bath. In fact, the easiest way to see a few for yourself is to get a large glass bowl of soapy water (soap lowers the surface tension of water and allows the bubbles to persist for a little longer) and drip more water slowly into it. Antibubbles look a little bit like regular soap bubbles, but glassier because they’re filled with water. Instead of acting like regular bubbles and sticking together as foam, antibubbles are repelled by each other. They skitter along the surface of liquids (known as “boules” or “globules”). Unlike air bubbles, a floating antibubble will bounce off the side of its container, or off any other objects it encounters, including air bubbles. If pushed below the liquid surface, they’re buoyant and rise to the top, but they take a lot longer to do so.”

Regrettably, despite repeated pleading, Magda George refused to elaborate but insisted readers should draw their own conclusions. However, she did point out that the entry posted 4 May 2014, “Blowing a raspberry at the bubble” inspired her to research the subject in more depth.

© Magda George

It’s just not fair: Hols for banks only!

“Isn’t it terrible; in this country we only have holidays for banks!”

The closing remark by Parish Priest Duncan Lourensz of St Thomas of Canterbury Catholic Church, Deal, at mass on 4 May 2014.