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Garrett Lisi: Dropping in and Dropping Science


Garrett Lisi: Dropping in and Dropping Science

Kite's Eye View: Lisi surfing Maui

How can a scientist and surfer exist in one mind? You surf best when you’re not thinking, when that primal stimulus-response mechanism is sharpest. It’s like making music or falling in love: at once creative, physical, and spiritual. And as a result of living and playing in such a dream-like state of graceful wave riding, surfers often present themselves to the world as something less than cerebral. Total stereotypical misconception, you say?

Oh for sure, but the media and “the man” think they has us pegged. However, surfing physicist Garrett Lisi is blowing the lid off the whole dang conspiracy by formulating not just a theory of something lame like gravity or relativity, but rather “the theory of everything.”

I mean, really, if you’re going to theorize about something, it might as well be everything.

Skeptical? I was too, but not that some nerdy physicist succeeded in figuring out the complexities of nature, but rather that said science guy is psycho for surfing and kite boarding and whittles away his days riding perfect waves in Maui (when not scribbling cryptographic mathematical renderings). I was stoked to get a chance to ask Garrett Lisi few questions about his life, surfing, science, and, well, “everything.”

Please answer these questions as a surfer not some dorky physicist. Nah, just joking. Actually, since I never did well in science class, don’t be offended that most of my questions come from a decidedly fun, surf-angle as should everything.

Lisi: If everything was as much fun as surfing, being in the water wouldn't be so special. But yah, I get your point -- I'll try to avoid equations if I can.

How has your life changed since you were pegged by the media and Internet scallywags with formulating the "Theory of Everything"?

Lisi: I'm used to a quiet life, so all the attention has been pretty stressful. Being in the public eye has brought a lot of responsibility, which I've only partially succeeded in shirking. But a lot of it has been fun, too -- I've had some amazing experiences.

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