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Kitchen catastrophe

  • Michael Sewell (a1)


Peter is a lively lad. All systems are at ‘go’. He will usually eat when he’s hungry, like any healthy boy.

There was no trouble about lunch last Saturday. It was roast chicken with bread sauce—one of his favourites. He tackled it with relish, and we were smoothly through to pudding at a brisk rate of knots.

But today things are different. He’s hungry all right, and it’s roast chicken again. But he won’t make a start. Why not? Now that he’s six he knows what he likes, and Mum has forgotten the bread sauce. Would you believe it? But it’s too late to make some now, so we shall all have to be satisfied without it.



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1. Thom, R., Stabilité structurelle et morphogénèse. Benjamin (New York, 1972). English translation by Fowler, D. H. (1974).
2. Isnard, C. A. and Zeeman, E. C., Some models from catastrophe theory in the social sciences (Edinburgh Conference 1972), in Use of models in the social sciences (ed. Collins, L.). Tavistock (London, 1974).
3. Sewell, M. J., Some mechanical examples of catastrophe theory, to appear in Bulletin of the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications (1975-6).

Kitchen catastrophe

  • Michael Sewell (a1)


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