The physicist and the bartender

Figure 1 – Rutherford’s bartender, (c) DE Wolf 2017.

The great twentieth century physicist Ernest Rutherford famously stated that “A theory that you can’t explain to a bartender is probably no damn good.”And so I found myself, this afternoon, at the juncture between physics, well chemistry actually, and bartending and beer-making.When I took this photograph the bartender was nowhere to be seen. Perhaps he was off in some corner communing with Lord Rutherford’s ghost. Perhaps Rutherford was testing his thesis, describing the Rutherford model of the atom, explaining the nature of the atomic nucleus, and the existence of the proton. Who knows?

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