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  • Nick: Hey guess what I’m doing tomorrow night.
  • Me: What what?
  • Nick: I’m playing a match of tennis against Ed Witten.
  • Me: HA!
  • Nick: No shit, he just came up to me today and challenged me to a game.
  • Me: Wait, do you play tennis?
  • Nick: No, but I told him I do. Actually I kinda do. I played all the time as a kid. Like riding a bike, you don’t forget, except sometimes you go over the handlbars.
  • Me: Is he really good or something?
  • Nick: No, I’m guessing he is appalling. I mean you think Einstein was good at tennis?
  • Me: How old is he?
  • Nick: Hmm, 57 or so. I mean what if I kick his ass? Like totally humiliate him. Maybe it’ll be the end of my career. Historically, when I play sport with someone, I injure them pretty often. What if I do the same here?
  • Me: Is he still doing research?
  • Nick: Yeah he’s kickin ass.
  • Me: Then you better not hurt him, or you will disrupt scientific progress, let alone your own career.
  • Nick: Imagine having to live with that! The field of theoretical physics was doing fine until some Australian buffoon drilled Ed Witten in the head with a tennis ball, immediately lobotomizing him.