The Man-hattan Project

Richard Feynman walked down Trinity Drive, along the barracks-laboratories that constituted Los Alamos National Lab. He had just arrived here a week ago, and the scene was already starting to drive him crazy. The militant high security was enough to drive anyone to paranoia, and while his undergraduate career at MIT had prepared him for the intense environment of wartime defense research, it had not prepared him for the lack of women. This was the problem with living in a town populated entirely by scientists and engineers. Back at MIT and at Princeton, it was easy to find girls, and thanks to his stunning good looks, all he needed to say to satisfy his needs was say, “Nice Shoes, want to fuck?”

And so Feynman walked down Trinity Drive, remembering the soft warmth of a woman's touch, and the sweet taste of a woman's kiss. But no, this was not the time for such thoughts. Feynman was on his way to an important meeting with Dr. Robert Oppenheimer, the director of the Manhattan Project. They were to meet behind closed doors to discuss the overall design for the bomb.

Feynman arrived at Oppenheimer's office. “Well, Richard, I'm glad we finally have this opportunity to meet in private.” Oppenheimer closed and locked the door.

“Yes, Dr. Oppenheimer,” Feynman was starstruck to be in the presence of such a handsome genius. “There are a lot of things I wanted to talk to you about.”

“Indeed. I've drafted a schematic for the bomb. As you know, the plan is to amass sufficiently distilled uranium 235.”

“Yes sir,” Feynman was eager to tell Oppenheimer about some of the work he's done, “I wanted to show you my chain reaction. I think you'll agree that my Q-value is quite large.”

Oppenheimer took his suit jacket off to counter the hot summer air. “Excellent, a large Q-value was just what I was hoping for. I've spoken to our colleagues at Oakridge, and they mentioned they suspect that the most promising parent isotope that we can get our uranium from is plutonium 239. Uranium 235 has a half life of about 700 million years, so we should have a sufficiently long time before it fissions into thorium 231.”

“Exactly.” Feynman felt his pride begin to swell with the knowledge that the great Robert Oppenheimer approved of his work. “So in order to get the bomb to explode, we need to have it exist in critical mass. When the uranium decays, its products will collide with other uranium nuclei. While each individual decay is an entirely random process, these collisions can induce more decays. This is the chain reaction. Once we get enough uranium, we can reach the critical mass, and the chain reaction will grow so big it will explode.” Feynman followed Oppenheimer's example and similarly removed his jacket.

“Yes, Richard. When dealing with radioactivity, things can get quite,” he paused, “hot.” Oppenheimer's eyes flicked down to Feynman's crotch and went back up to stare at his younger colleagues' eyes. “The problem is that we don't want things to get off too early. We need some mechanism to keep the bomb from going critical until we are ready for it to blow.” Oppenheimer moved his seat closer to Feynman's. “This is why I would like to run my gun mechanism by you.”

Oppenheimer whipped out his paper and pencil and placed them on the table in front of Feynman. He then proceeded to draw a long, thin figure diving into an accepting hole. “The idea,” Oppenheimer explained, “is that the...bullet and the hole can both be just over half the critical mass. When we are ready to detonate, we simply slide the bullet into the hole, and both will be satisfied. They will go critical and then,” Oppenheimer paused again, breathing heavily, “explode.”

“Oh Dr. Oppenheimer,” Feynman began.

“Please, Richard, call me Oppie.”

Feynman smiled. “Oppie, that's a brilliant plan I–”

Oppenheimer traces his finger along the tip of the bullet and looked back down at Feynman's crotch.

“Oh Richard, you appear to have a hadron.”

Feynman blushed and quickly tried to readjust his posture to one more subtle. “I...I'm sorry, sir, it's, ah, it's just that my mind was starting to wander and I was thinking a lot about bosons.”

“Richard, Richard,” Oppenheimer began, “it doesn't matter what your spin is or what your quark composition is. You've certainly got a color charge, and I have just the strong force for you.”

Oppenheimer leaned in close; Feynman could feel his superior's breath on his lips and bent in to match him. Their lips touched and they kissed briefly before Oppenheimer pulled back slightly, lingering just enough for Feynman to know the collision was inelastic.

“Oppie,” Feynman breathed, “I couldn't help but notice your wonderful form factor. When I first came out here, I never in all my wildest dreams would have realized we'd have this opportunity to cross sections.”

“You've got quite the magic nucleus, Feynman, and I have a few Casimir tricks I'd like to show you.” Oppenheimer removed Feynman's belt and unzipped his pants. Oppenheimer fastened Feynman's belt around Feynman's hands, constraining them behind the chair.

“Oh, factorize me, Oppie,” Feynman moaned, “then go on and renormalize all of my higher order loops.”

“Don't worry, Dick, I know just how to handle your infinities.” Oppenheimer pulled some rope out from his desk drawer and proceeded to tie Feynman up so that he could not make large movements.

“Oppie, you astound me. I normally don't enjoy this sort of things, but your bindings are loose enough that my limbs feel unbound when close together and infinitely bound as I move them apart. It only feels like bondage when I try to escape; otherwise I feel asymptotically free.”

Oppenheimer pressed his finger against Feynman's mouth to silence him and then slowly removed his partner's boxers. Oppenheimer paused in amazement at the large dimensionality of Feynman's column vector, and then dove down as things began getting tensor.

Feynman began screaming in ecstasy. He had never been with someone as skilled as Oppenheimer. Oppenheimer quickened his pace, excited to a higher energy level by Feynman's reaction. This was just how Oppenheimer liked it: as loud as reasonably achievable.

The bullet entered the hole, and Feynman went critical.

The explosion was all that either of them had hoped for. Feynman put his clothing back on and kissed Oppenheimer on the lips one more time before heading home to contemplate the aftermath of this new bomb. He couldn't wait till the next time he could get such hot radioaction.

Feynman Slash Notation

Richard Feynman walked west down Trinity drive. He was on his way to work for the morning, and a lukewarm breeze was foreshadowing another hot day under the New Mexican sun. Feynman had lived in these barracks for the last year, and the monotony of the mesa had worn him down. The other scientists at the lab seemed to lack that certain spark to kindle up his passions and he had sworn on his honor that he would not attempt to seduce any of his fellows' wives. Lacking women to spin with, Feynman soon found his frustrated state decay into a degenerate ground level of constant agitation. He kicked at a twig on the ground and stared longingly into the distance, wishing he could find someone, anyone, with whom he could anti-align his helicity.

And then he stopped in his tracks. He adjusted his spin glasses and focused on the figure that stood up ahead in Feynman's path. Curiosity and anticipation bubbled up within him as he cautiously approached the distant diagram of what appeared to be the perfect free body. Feynman observed the man's familiar face and saw the man's hair parted to the left—opposite the right side to which Feynman parted his own hair. As Feynman's eyes moved down the man's body he noticed that the target of his observations wore his shirt pocket on the opposite breast from the one on which he wore his own; he noticed that his class ring was on the opposite hand; and, when Feynman's eyes met with his counterpart's waist, he noticed that his … belt … hung by the opposite leg. Other than these features, however, the two men standing on Trinity Drive were entirely indistinguishable.

“Hello,” the two men introduced themselves in union. Feynman stopped and stared, dumbfounded. “I'm Richard Feynman,” he introduced himself as he confusedly extended his hand.

The other man laughed and responded, “Ah, well yes, then I suppose I should introduce myself as Anti-Richard Feynman. Pleasure to meet you.” With that, Anti-Feynman grabbed and heartily shook Feynman's hand.

Gears turned in Feynman's head. Finally, someone interesting here, he thought, and said, “Who … what is going on?” Anti-Feynman turned and walked a few meters back where he had come from and opened the door to what Feynman recognized as being his portable office.

The two men entered the office and Feynman quickly shut the door behind him. “Sorry to appear here so unannounced,” Anti-Feynman began.

“Nonsense, you know you're more than welcome to violate my CP symmetry whenever you like.” A smile crept across Feynman's face. “In fact, I only wish we could have even more of a coupling constant.”

“Oh, but you know as well as I do that you've got quite the cross section.” A strange charm crept across Anti-Feynman's lips. “Perhaps we can even measure it at our interaction vertex.”

“I believe I might even already know the answer to that; although there is the issue of our grand unification that I would like to discuss. I'm curious, Anti-Feynman, how exactly did you come?”

Anti-Feynman snickered. “Don't worry, Feynman, you'll learn that all in good time.” Then the smile faded half a centimeter. “I believe it either all started or all ended with a big bang. But you see, there only is one Feynman. Just one Richard Feynman in this universe, going backward and forward in time, pulsating in and out, and in and out of the manifolds of the universe, along our rather lengthy timelines.” Anti-Feynman's eyes narrowed as his smile reemerged. “We'll just have to optimize for our intersection. And at the risk of making things tensor,” Anti-Feynman's eyes flickered along the length of Feynman's body, “I do quite admire your bilinear form.”

“Well, then,” Feynman said, processing what he had just learned, “I have spent much time in my past handling bosons, but,” his eyes wandered down to Anti-Feynman's lap, “perhaps we can discuss the possibility of hadron exchange.”

“What a fascinating concept; I can think of one particular multi-bodied system I'd like to mediate with a strong force.” Anti-Feynman's hand stroked against the front of his pants as he licked his lips. “And I would certainly like to observe your flavor eigenstate.”

Feynman and Anti-Feynman stood up from their chairs and embraced each other. “Oh, well then you'll be pleased to find how my mass oscillates,” Feynman responded.

Anti-Feynman reached his hand down to unbutton Feynman's pants and whispered, “Oh, trust me; when we conjugate, we'll know just what each other likes, and when I touch you, you'll explode.”

Feynman performed the reciprocating action, and, entangled together, they fell to the ground state. Feynman gently kissed Anti-Feynman on the lips; Anti-Feynman pushed back harder and slipped his tongue between his partner's teeth.

Feynman pulled back and whispered into Anti-Feynman's ear. “Just wait till you see my inverse seesaw mechanism when I go down on you. And now, with all respect to P symmetry, I hope you don't find this perturbative.” Feynman inverted his position and lowered his face to Anti-Feynman's mass while he allowed Anti-Feynman to gauge his symmetry. Aligned anti-parallel, they drew in each other's dipole moments in a way not explainable merely by gravitational attractions, and together they resonated back and forth in the super position described by the magic number sixty-nine.

Feynman and Anti-Feynman both pulsed their heads back and forth in superfluidity as moans emitted from deep within their throats. They both moved up and down on each other, as both were simultaneously on top and on bottom. Then, with perfect supersymmetry, the two men reached the peaks of their distributions together.

Satisfied, the two slowly decohered. “That was quite a favorable parton distribution,” Feynman said, smiling down at his partner. They laid there holding each other as time continued to drift by. Eventually Feynman looked up at the clock. “Oh wow,” he remarked, “so much time seems to have elapsed.”

“Ah, yes,” Anti-Feynman responded, “and so that is why I must go.” The two men nodded at each other as they stood up and quietly got dressed. Anti-Feynman was gone by the time Feynman had finished pulling his shirt down over his head. Feynman took a few moments to clean up his office to hide any traces of the events that occurred within the room.

Feynman paused for a moment as he went to put a pen into his breast pocket. The pocket was on the other side of his shirt than he was used to. He shrugged and walked up to the mirror, straightening his tie and brushing his hair into a nicely combed part on his left.

Satisfied with his appearance, Feynman left his portable office and headed east down Trinity Drive. Off in the distance, Feynman could see a familiar figure stop in its tracks. Feynman smiled and thought to himself, Physics is like sex. Sure it might yield practical results, but that's not why we do it.

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