It’s the Neutrinos

Antarctica

“I’m telling you, he’s lost it.”

“Who?”

“The physicist. The one with the crazy eyes and the brushfire of beard.”

“Are you talking about Keith?”

“I don’t know his name, man. I just know he’s crazy. He wants to kill every last one of us.”

“Does this have anything to do the fact you watched The Shining last night?”

“I’m telling you. He means to murder us. If you want to know why—I think it’s the neutrinos. I think they passed through his brain. Made him crazy.”

“You know neutrinos pass through all of us? Like all the time.”

“You going to do something or not?”

“Okay, well it wouldn’t be the first time a cuber went mad during winterover. What exactly did Keith say?”

“It wasn’t what he said. It’s what he thought. I heard it. It came right through my skull—like radio waves, or those…whatchamacallits.”

“Um, neutrinos?”

150 words

This has been an edition of What Pegman Saw. To read more stories inspired by the prompt or to submit your own, click here.

In researching this story, I learned about the cubers, those hardy souls that endure six months of sunless skies and bottomless temperatures to overwinter in one of the most remote locations in the world. To learn more about the scientists, artists and other dedicated individuals who work at the IceCube South Pole Neutrino Observatory visit http://icecube.wisc.edu. Their weekly journal is fascinating: http://icecube.wisc.edu/news/current. Turns out watching The Shining is an overwinter tradition.

As always, thanks for reading!

13 Comments

  1. I love this. You capture the claustrophobia very well. Funny, too.

  2. Oh! Perfect. I like the “egg-thing” in the picture you chose. I was going to write about someone losing it in a winter camp and am glad I didn’t. You did a most excellent job. Lish

    1. Thanks Lish! I loved your take. I’m a big fan of the adventurer’s tale.

  3. Brilliant! the craziness brought about by being confined in a desolate place. You’ve captured it perfectly. Cheers, Varad

    1. Thanks so much & thanks for reading Varad!

  4. So, who’s crazy again?

    1. Begs the question, doesn’t it? Thanks for reading!

  5. You brought in beautifully the sense of desolation that comes with prolonged solitariness. I loked this story a lot, K

  6. Funny Karen 🙂 I think Keith’s not the the one going crazy 😜! But this guy at leas seems more of a harmless crazy then a “Shining” type crazy!

    1. Let’s hope so. Thanks so much for reading!

  7. Dear Karen,

    Six months would be enough to drive anyone bonkers. Although we have a nextdoor neighbor who says she can hear electricity in the wires. She never comes out of the house…this is probably a good thing…for the rest of us. 😉 Love your dialogue. Well done.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    1. I don’t know which would be worse, six months of cold or six months of dark. Thanks for reading Rochelle!

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