The internet is many things to many people.  In addition to bringing the world together socially, economically, and pornographically it also has ruined many a comedian’s observational humor bit.  It wasn’t that long ago, think Seinfeld airing on NBC era, where a man could make a living standing in front of a brick wall with a microphone saying things like, “what’s with air conditioners?  Do they have little eskimos in there blowing cold air in off their igloos?” or “how do all of the lightning bugs in the glass blub know how to light up when I flip this switch?” (note: I didn’t say these people were funny, all I said was that they were able to make a living).

The internet has washed away this brand of comedy as anyone can now reach into their pocket and come up with an exact answer as to how things work.  There is no more mystery to the evolved world.  Sure we mostly use them to look at pictures of cats but our smart phones bring us access to every piece of recorded knowledge in history.  It’s pretty incredible if you think about it, but funny it most certainly is not.

This science device is a modern marvel

Why do I mention this you ask?  Every now and I again I sit down to write a post about some weird little idiosyncrasy of life that has been bugging me of late and as I dig into the research some background information before I begin, more often than not I find my questions answered in a very simple and clear manner.  Thanks a lot internet.  Just when I’m about to give up and assume the internet possesses the answers to all of life’s questions I got to thinking about how sewing machines work.

Think about the logistics of these age old devices.  A needle with thread is inserted directly into a piece of fabric.  The needle goes up and down on the Y-axis and the fabric is advanced across the X-axis.  I have never understood how the needle can advance a stitch forward through solid matter.  Wouldn’t the fabric be unable to move when the needle is inserted and thus how can the thread cover any distance?  These things keep me up at night.

So I turned to the internet and as expected I found a detailed explanation of the inner mechanisms of a sewing machine.  It was all right there spelled out for me.  I read the document and re-read sections as necessary, but this was different than past situations of a similar ilk.  I still have no concept as to how these contraptions work.  It boggles my mind to this day how this invention birthed over a century ago can function as this document describes.  I don’t get it.  And that’s… ok.

For some reason I take solace in the fact that not all of life’s mysteries can be explained to me via a simple Google search.  There’s value in the unknown or the lack of comprehension.  As much as I strive to understand as much as I can of the world around me I like knowing there’s things I don’t know or just don’t understand.  It keeps me searching for answers on this topic and those like it.

Thank you sewing machines for being the equivalent to nuclear physics in my universe.