I am currently reading The Pleasure of Finding Things Out, a collection of the "best short works" of acclaimed physicist Richard P. Feynman (1918 - 1988), perhaps best known popularly for his Feynman Diagrams for schematising sub-atomic interactions. The book features interviews, speeches, short essays and semi-formal question and answer sessions with the quirky and renouned Nobel winner, including a short, personal introduction by student and colleague Freeman Dyson which compares his relationship with the elder physicist to that of Jonson and Shakespeare. Editor Jeffrey Robbins has chosen to largely preserve Feynman's ungrammatical, off-the-cuff style, which is as often charming as it is frustrating to read, depending on the context, OK? Here is an excerpt from a talk Feynman gave about his involvement in the Manhatten Project, and how he was the only person to see the first atomic blast:
"So then I figured the only thing that could really hurt your eyes -- bright light can never hurt your eyes -- it's ultraviolet light that does. So I got behind a truck windshield, so the ultraviolet can't go through the glass, so that would be safe, and so I could see the damn thing...OK. Time comes...I see this white light changing into yellow and then into orange...it's a big ball of smoke with flashes on the inside...I am the only guy that actually looked at the damn thing, the first Trinity Test. The guys up where I was all had dark glasses...You couldn't see a thing with dark glasses."