A Tribute

I don’t know whether Stephen Hawking was really the world’s smartest person. But I’m pretty sure he was smarter than me. I don’t really understand the indepth mathematical equations he came up with to explain the universe. But I do enjoy dreaming about the stars, the universe and everything – and he helped. I don’t think he’d have been quite as famous as he was if he hadn’t been stuck in a wheelchair with a comical grin permanently fixed on his face. But I don’t care much how famous he was. I don’t quite know how he survived so long. But I bet on that question, Mr Hawking was probably as equally baffled as I.

I don’t know if God exists. But if he does, I’m pretty sure that Mr Hawking has mathematically proven to him, face to face, that he doesn’t. I don’t know why a whole load of good guys have died over the last few years, when the Grim Reaper had such a wide choice of suckers to pick from. But I’m always a little relieved that we still have David Attenborough with us. He needs to live forever.

A lot of things will be said by a lot of people over the next few days. All complimentary, I’m sure. I will share my personal favourite with you. It was published in a US newspaper and was , I believe, later quoted by a politician to make a point. It still give me a giggle.

“People such as scientist Stephen Hawking wouldn’t have a chance in the UK, where the National Health Service would say the life of this brilliant man, because of his physical handicaps, is essentially worthless.”

So my tribute today is not for Stephen Hawking. It’s for the NHS, which let us keep him  and his brilliant mind on this planet for so long. The photo is one I took while in Mexico, back in 2008. We should look at the moon more often and ponder our place in the universe before speaking of other matters.


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