Physics and Fig Newtons: A Short Story

Martin was a man of many dimensions. For those who knew him briefly, they would be tempted to describe him as mentally inclined. He always seemed to be sauntering about, muttering riddled phrases of mathematics and he engaged quite frequently in random acts of experimentation with various chemicals. Those who witnessed Martin’s antics over a prolonged period of time, such as his fellow workers in a chemist’s lab, often pondered upon his state of sanity. He was the only chemist in his field that was adamant to refuse giving or receiving help. Even on the best of days, he was not a pleasant person to be around. Martin had a strange habit of asking for the time. His time-conscious obsession did not become a concern until one workday afternoon. Martin was most certainly getting out of hand. He began pulling materials off of shelves at a rapid pace and shouting for others give him space because he was running out of time. When asked why he was so fixated on the miniscule rotations of the minute hand, Martin replied, “Time is the only factor that is stopping me from achieving my goals. Time progresses and my activity level regresses as I become increasingly aware that my time on earth may stop. I feel dependent on the second hands that creep up so tauntingly for they dictate my ability to succeed. I want to be in control. I am much too brilliant for time to limit how much I am capable of accomplishing. I want time to fear me. I WILL conquer time.” With that bold statement, Martin used his retort stand to create a barrier between himself and any objectors, and pushed his way into his personal laboratory. He locked the door behind him and plunged deep into a world of voluntary seclusion. His colleagues thought his breakdown was simply temporary. What they didn’t know was that behind closed doors, Martin’s mind was at work and he was fully prepared to concoct his immortality. Every morning for the first few weeks, Martin’s coworkers would take turns sliding a Fig Newton under his door. Originally, this move was exercised to mock Martin’s resemblance to the committed scientist Sir Isaac Newton. A laugh-worthy reaction could always be expected.  Martin would jerk open the door, throw the cookie, and announce that he did not need Fig Newtons as he was quite capable of making them himself. He would then proceed to lecture his colleagues about how they were not dedicating their lives enough to science and that every pleasure they took part in was a waste of their time. Everyone was sceptical about his ability to conquer time, but Martin's wall of confidence was shatterproof. Every day he would retreat back into his laboratory and continue his work. His coworkers continued to slide Fig Newton cookies into his laboratory, but eventually they no longer hoped for a humorous reaction from Martin. Explosive sounds and colour-changing sights were frequently seen from beneath the door. Martin’s fellow scientists began ritually placing cookies under the door at random times throughout the day. The only way to be sure that Martin was alive was if he emerged from his isolation to yell at them. Soon enough, the Fig Newtons stopped making an appearance. Soon enough, Martin had finally discovered the secret for eternal youth. And soon enough, all of the scientists in Martin’s workplace had retired, moved on, and passed away. Martin was ecstatic. He had accomplished his ultimate goal and time was no longer a factor for him. Martin couldn’t wait to tell the world. The intelligence he possessed could be broadcasted for the entire world to see.  Martin could barely contain his excitement as he turned the door handle and… stepped out into nothing. The world had faded away and Martin hadn’t the chance to experience it.  Martin was all alone... forever.