Thank God forces always come in pairs

For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

This is of course Newton’s third law of physics.

According to The Physics Classroom, “The statement means that in every interaction, there is a pair of forces acting on the two interacting objects. The size of the forces on the first object equals the size of the force on the second object. The direction of the force on the first object is opposite to the direction of the force on the second object.

“Forces always come in pairs — equal and opposite action-reaction force pairs.”

There is absolutely no doubt this law of physics is verifiable, based on measureable physical examples.

Does a similar law apply to the non-tangential universe?

I would be willing to bet you — for entertainment purposes only — that not only does a similar law exist for the ethereal realm; I also bet you there is a name for the law’s ethereal version.

I am not a philosophy student. I do not spend hours pondering equal and opposite action-reaction, but I think I could present a compelling argument the law is manifest no matter how I view reality.

Let’s just say for now that Newton’s third law of physics is alive and well in my construct-world.

In July 2014, my former employer unceremoniously downsized and eliminated my position as managing editor for several of its publications. One day I was working away on award winning publications. The next day I was signing paperwork to receive payment for my accrued vacation time or personal time off (PTO) and toting a brown cardboard box with my belongings out of the door.

I knew I was not being fired because when one is fired, according to company policy, the employee forfeits any PTO. Although I knew my separation was “a business decision,” reality decided to bless me with unbalanced equilibrium, rage, bewilderment and all of the things one typically experiences when, as we say in soccer, “You are being sent off.”

“Yuckus maximus!”

A few days later the company shuttered three of the publications that I managed, and in April 2015 the company fired several people as it announced it had sold all of its newspaper groups.

The ethereal version of Newton’s law showed up three months after my personal leavening.

I was hired for the Hydro Group at PennWell Publishing in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where I get to geek out about all things related to dams, civil structures and hydroelectric generation.

Working in the Hydro Group, it is here that “an equal and opposite reaction” continues to take shape.

I began as a photographer at my previous job. During the arduous course of almost eight years working at the company — not for the company — many people helped me increase my level of skill and knowledge. I was also promoted several times. For the company’s benefit, I used my personally owned still photography and video equipment, and software to increase company market share.

In my current position as an associate editor for Hydro Review and HRW-Hydro Review Worldwide, I am able to build and remodel my professional career based on the foundation of hard-earned lessons, technical skill, and relationship building I previously learned.

When compared to the misery I experienced for years — not including meeting and working with some fantastic people — the daily joy I receive from the grind of toiling in the world of all things hydro, in relation to the ethereal version of Newton’s third law of physics, is certainly the much-loved half of the equal and opposite action-reaction force pair.

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Gregory B. Poindexter formerly was an associate editor for

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