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Analogies and metaphors for acids and bases

When a boyfriend is stable (or a conjugate base is more stable), his girlfriend is much stronger (or the acid is strong acid). The more stable a boyfriend (or a conjugate base) the less likely he is to be argumentative (or a stable conjugate base is unreactive), giving the girlfriend (acid) more room to be argumentative (reactive). ~Joshua Stewart and Sabrina Schundler

An acid is like a mom holding her baby, and the baby is the conjugate base. If the baby is very unstable/reactive (crying, upset), the mom won’t let her baby crawl around (weak acid). If he’s stable and content she will put him down and let him explore (strong acid). Also, as the baby grows, she will be more likely to separate from the child. ~Hannah Patterson

In a relationship, if one person has a very strong personality, their partner needs to have a relatively more stable personality to keep the balance. ~Connor Clay

More electronegative atoms are more “grumpy”, and grumpy individuals tend to be more comfortable and stable when surrounded by similarly negative folks (electrons). By contrast, they are relatively less stable around positive folks (H+). When they lose contact with a positive person, they are less likely to reach out and reconnect with them. Therefore, the more electronegative and as a result more stable conjugate bases favor dissociation consistent with their strong conjugate acids. Less electronegative, less “grumpy” atoms are less stable when surrounded by negative, mopey electrons. They want to grapple on to something positive to feel comfortable and stable. They are more stable when they do have something positive in their lives, so they don’t dissociate as easily. Thus, weak acids have conjugate bases that are less stable and don’t want to give up their proton (H+). Of course, nobody can be too stable with too much concentrated negativity in his or her life. Therefore, bigger atoms of similar “grumpiness” (electronegativity) are even more stable as conjugate bases because they can spread the negativity out. Because they are even more stable, they are even more likely to favor dissociation, leading to stronger conjugate acids. ~Brian Lammert

The more stable a person is, the stronger their relationships can be with other people because they’ll be able to withstand greater ups and downs. (The person is the conjugate base and the relationship is the acid. A trick to remember this is that people are the “basis” of a relationship.) ~Brooke O'Neill

Acidity is like a waterfall (increases to the right and down the periodic table). Acid-base reactions are like salmon going down a river and waterfall -at the beginning they are freaked out, but once they reach the bottom of the waterfall, they feel stable. ~Jeff Chu

chem301/analogies_and_metaphors_for_acids_and_bases.txt · Last modified: 2016/06/07 09:53 (external edit)