Monday, May 16, 2005

Wait a Minute Mr. Postman
I recently received yet another letter (and CD) meant for Brian Greene, String Theorist. Here are the contents of that letter:

Dr. Greene,
Congratulations on your books. Recently I read a quote from you on the MSNBC web site that made me think that further progress on a unified theory may have to wait for new advances in mathematics. I am no crank and have developed a complete, yet simple unified theory that needs to be considered. Enclosed is a CD with material (Microsoft Word, Powerpoint, and Excel spreadsheets) that detail this work. It will be worth your time to scan through the book and spreadsheet Cosmology.ppt. My web site is _____.
I live near Ithaca during the summer.

Okay, assuming that you had the correct Brian Greene, this letter is still an outrage. Let's take this step-by-step. First of all, I don't like your tone. Your theory needs to be considered? I'll be the judge of that. It will be worth my time? Don't tell me what is or is not worth my time. Secondly, who are you to pitch me a brand new unified theory? Are you an Ivy League professor? Have you published several best-selling and critically-praised books? Didn't think so. And finally, what does your not being a crank have anything to do with anything? The fact that you would even use the word crank leads me to believe that you are one.
To sum, up, I am not Brian Greene, String Theorist (although I don't mind the comparison to John Cusack made in this profile). So stop sending me letters directed at him. Send them to the other Brian Greene at Columbia University to avoid further confusion. Oh, and while we're on the subject, I am also not Brian Greene, oboe player extrordinaire. So stop leaving messages on my answering machine asking if I can play with your orchestra. I cannot (or can, but very badly).


Tommy Himself said...

I bet none of those other Brian Greenes could post an entry as funny as that one.

Why, oh why are you not mailing that reply in a letter to this guy. (Just don't let him know he got the wrong guy.) You HAVE to. You owe it to us.

I'll give you the 37 cents for the stamp.

But please add the following...

"P.S. I'm keeping your CD. But don't believe for one second that I'll ever look at it. I'm keeping it more to teach you a lesson -- Don't be sending geniuses your little hobby string theory projects. It annoys us."

Brian said...

Thanks for the compliment, but I don't know if it's true... those oboe players are a laugh riot!

Anonymous said...

Hi, I am the Brian Greene, oboe player extrordinaire. I can't imagine how may oboe gigs I lost to you guys when I lived in New York. I did, however, give a fabulous lecture on String Theory at a small college in Pennsylvania for $5000 in 1997.