Saturday, January 14, 2023

111 - The Future of True Facts

The Science Professor finished making a few notes in his notebook, and looked up to see his 4pm appointment, a student named Mick, walk in the door of his office and sit down in the chair opposite him.

“Hello, Mick,” the professor said.


Mick looked sideways at the professor and inhaled. “I need a better grade in this class,” he said.

The professor looked across at Mick. He cleared his throat. “Well,” he began, “there’s a perfectly simple way to bring your grade up. You know what it is. You’ve missed four assignments.”

“I can’t do the assignments,” Mick said. “They cause me anxiety.”

The professor did not say anything for a moment.

Mick continued. “Also,” he said, “you said I was wrong when I wrote that the air we breathe contains pixie dust.”

“Yes,” the professor replied. “I said you were wrong. Our air does not contain pixie dust.”

“You’re discriminating against my most personal beliefs,” Mick said.

The professor stood up and walked behind his desk.

“Mick, this is a science class. Science contains facts. We can very clearly measure exactly what elements are in the air we breathe.”

“You’re discriminating against my beliefs,” Mick repeated. “I believe with all my heart and soul that the air we breathe contains pixie dust.”

“Mick,” the professor said. He stopped. He dropped his head. He continued. “You signed up for this class in order to learn the things that I can teach you.”

“No – “ Mick interrupted.

“No?” the professor asked.

“I signed up for this class because I need this credit. I don’t want you to indoctrinate me with your elitist propaganda.”

“Elitist propa – “ the professor half-laughed. “This is science – “

“And I need you to stop teaching science as if it is facts.”

“Mick! Where did you get the idea that you can tell me what to teach? I’m the teacher. You’re the student.”

“You’re being discriminatory,” Mick said. “You teach things that cause me anxiety. I believe air contains pixie dust, and if you tell me I’m wrong, you’re cancelling my freedom of speech.”


The professor looked down at his desk and shook his head. “Mick, look I’m sorry about being argumentative. It’s just that we have scientific tools that measure the air we breathe. It contains Oxygen, Nitrogen, carbon dioxide – “

“And, in my opinion, pixie dust,” Mick said.

“Opinion…there’s no opinion about it.”

“Now you’re being pixie-dust-phobic,” Mick said. “You’re being critical of me for having beliefs that don’t match with yours.”

The professor sat down at his desk and stared at the papers.

Mick continued. “I’m circulating a petition.”

“A petition?”

“A petition to have you fired for so many reasons; for causing your students so much anxiety, with the assignments and the learning so-called ‘facts,’ for being pixie-dust-phobic, for discriminating against the personal beliefs of your students.”

“Mick, this institution will never fire me for teaching science accurately. I’m sorry I couldn’t help you today. Have a good day.”

A week later the professor was fired. Mick had won.

Later in life Mick would become famous for his theory that Democrats are actually laboratory-engineered mutant yaks, designed to take over the world in their fake human form. Yes, there were those who thought Mick was an absurd clown, but Mick campaigned with fervent belief, and so the people eventually came around to his way of thinking.

Then, when he failed to become elected President, half of the voting public believed him when he said the election was stolen by alien space satellites that infect people’s brains, and force them to accidentally vote for the wrong person…

Peter Wick

January 14, 2023