Today, my husband and I were talking about how we express ourselves differently and why we don’t understand each other sometimes. He said he noticed that I am driven by my emotions and often act on them without thinking. I asked him, “But you have emotions too, right? Don’t they ever drive you?” And this is how he explained it:

“In a nuclear reactor, you have a specific isotope of uranium called Uranium 235. And what you do, is you bombard it with neutrons, and when the uranium becomes unstable and it turns into two lighter elements. That reaction also releases three neutrons, which start the same reaction in surrounding uranium atom. A reaction like that would grow exponentially, until all the uranium fuel was exhausted. So you need control rods to moderate the reaction, or to slow down the reaction, or however you want to say it. And those control rods work by absorbing the neutrons but not reacting to them and remaining inert.”

He then compared himself to a nuclear reactor that has its control rods almost all the way in the reactor, so that there is a fair balance of absorption and reaction. “It’s a slow reaction, it’s usually pretty level, and it doesn’t produce a lot of power, but it also doesn’t produce a lot of spikes, so I can store the power for later.” Apparently, I am like a reactor with no control rods at all. The reactions are all out control, and pretty much do what they want.  

I offered my own analogy. “So you’re a cross country runner and I’m a sprinter. You run marathons, so you save your energy for when you really need it, but mostly you pace yourself and make sure you can last the whole way, but I run short races really fast, so I release my energy in short bursts.”



You know you’ve married a scientist when…


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