Things That Fall

FEU Advocate
February 14, 2024 07:21

Our classical mechanics lecturer asked us to enumerate things affected by gravity—and so I did.

Here is a list of things that fall: 

1. The apple that prompted Sir Isaac Newton to publish his Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica; 

Personally speaking, fruit might not have been the best choice for an idea-jerker. Nor would the bubonic plague serve as the ideal time-setting for a scientific breakthrough. But Sir Newton recognized serendipity in the most unconventional way possible: observing crashing apples against the fertile soil of Woolsthorpe Manor’s orchard. 

Note to self: some falls inspire people. “The great fall of apples” gave birth to universal gravitation, Newtonian physics, and infinitesimal calculus. Perhaps my fall could birth “the next big thing.”

2. Space debris free-falling from the Lyrid meteor shower;

Sometimes, Earth would plow against meteoroid streams to reveal a spectacular light show. For thousands of years, Lyra, the harp, had cried shooting stars for tears, momentarily coloring the night sky with luminous streaks—a phenomenon that imbues hearts with enough hope to ask the universe for wishes.

Note to self: some falls can be breathtaking. It doesn’t have to involve interplanetary debris, but may my fall be as striking as the Lyrids. 

3. Astronauts inside SpaceX capsules seeking refuge back home to Earth;

Rocket landings are just them falling with style—which takes exceptional aerospace engineering and very complicated rocket science. The re-entry to the Earth’s atmosphere follows a meticulous and time-sensitive process for a successful splashdown.

Note to self: some falls are safe. Falling is not innately dangerous. Heat shields keep astronauts from disintegrating during the de-orbit burn. Parachutes are deployed for further deceleration to ensure a successful touchdown. I hope my next fall will land me safely. 

4. Me to you; 

Whatever the physics behind this experience—I am enjoying every single second of it. This fall feels different; it doesn't feel like falling at all. Perhaps, it's the distance illusion, or maybe it's the nausea build-up as my stomach somersaults from the dive—but falling for you feels like flying. I feel suspended for at least 10,000 feet and everything else seems so small to be relevant, but you. I feel a certain kind of euphoria. The neurochemicals flooding my brain tell me that this is home—you are home. If I had known that free-falling could feel this great, I would do it over and over again.

And I am sure that even if you take away gravity, I will still fall for you. 

Note to self: some falls just feel right. 

And maybe, just maybe . . .

This is my best fall yet. 

– Valerie Rose V. Ferido