Volleyball and Equilibrium
| Lasse Lien |
What exactly is the role of equilibrium in the competitive process? Believe it or not, I have found the answer. It plays the same role as gravity does in a volleyball match.
Think about it! The ball is continuously bounced in ways that direct it towards new states of rest (new equilibriums), but it hardly ever settles down in any of these, because it is subject to new bounces, sending it towards yet another equilibrium. Moreover, about half the time the ball is moving opposite of what gravity would dictate, i.e. it is moving upwards, but unless it is bounced again it will start falling downwards and settle in the position gravity dictates (operating on the last bounce). Of course, this never occurs because the ball is continuously bounced. So a theory of gravity alone would not provide a good prediction of where the ball is, nor where it is headed, or even how the game got started. But mind you, think about how absurd it would be to try to understand a game of volleyball without any notion of gravity!