When I heard the Illustration Friday word of the week, “Infinite,” the first thing I thought of was the silly philosophy question “How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?”
I’m pretty sure at least one of the answers that came out of that was “infinite,” but I could be thinking of “is Hell endo or extothermic?”
Of course there are other ideas about the pin question…
“Firstly, angels simply don’t dance. It’s one of the distinguishing characteristics that marks an angel. They may listen appreciatively to the Music of the Spheres, but they don’t feel the urge to get down and boogie to it. So, none.
At least, nearly none. Aziraphale had learned to gavotte in a discreet gentlemen’s club in Portland Place, in the late 1880s, and while he had initially taken to it like a duck to merchant banking, after a while he had become quite good at it, and was quite put out when, some decades later, the gavotte went out of style for good.
So providing the dance was a gavotte, and providing that he had a suitable partner (also able, for the sake of arguement, both to gavotte, and to dance it on the head of a pin), the answer is a straightforward one.
Then again, you might just as well ask how many demons can dance on the head of a pin. They’re of the same original stock, after all. And at least they dance.
And if you put it that way, the answer is, quite a lot actually, providing they abandon their physical bodies, which is a picnic for a demon. Demons aren’t bound by physics. If you take the long view, the universe is just something small and round, like those water-filled balls which produce a miniature snowstorm when you shake them. But if you look from really close up, the only problem about dancing on the head of a pin is all those big gaps between electrons.”
– Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett
I haven’t decided yet whether to develop the sketch into a portfolio piece… I like the concept but I’m not sure if I’m actually managing to draw the pins successfully.