Last Friday, I got piss drunk and went to the Museum of National History in Vienna.
Now, I know what you are thinking.
It’s about your lunch. Whether it was good and filling, or unsatisfying, or why you haven’t eaten it yet.
But the other thing you might be thinking is why would someone get completely intoxicated before looking at some science stuff.
Well, the answer is obvious. Because I wanted to do some serious thinkin’. Unbeknownst to you until now, all the world’s smartest scientific minds indulged in illicit substance use while doing their best work.
You think ‘Gravity is the curvature of spacetime’ was deduced by sipping on some carbonated black cherry cola and chewing the eraser end of a pencil?
Nope. Albert Einstein smoked more marijuana than the average college sophomore. The reason no one believed Copernicus’s theory about the Earth revolving around the Sun is because he made that proclamation from inside an opium den. Why do you think Neil deGrase Tyson wears all those long-sleeved suit jackets on Cosmos? To look smart? No, it’s to cover the track marks on his arms from all his heroin use.
I decided to join the ranks of these geniuses by pounding four half-liters of Gösser in Maria-Theresien-Platz (Austrian for ‘Park in Front of the Museum,’ I think), then being unable to work the credit card reader at the entrance to the museum when it came time to pay. (I had to hand my card to the attendant and let him swipe it.)
While I was in the museum, stumbling and bumbling around, I came across a small section about the occurrence which brought about the end of the dinosaurs.
“The ol’ K-T extinction I event,” I thought. Know this one by heart. Gigantic asteroid slams into Mexico, brimstone and hellfire, yada yada yada, humankind.
I could have just left it there, heading over to look at the stuffed llamas for a bit.
‘But no,’ I thought. That’s not being science. What if Tycho Brahe had looked up at Jupiter and thought, ‘Yup. Someone told me that was the Roman God of the Sky, so that’s the Roman God of the Sky.’?
No. Fuck no. Science is about questioning everything. So, as I watched an animated video of an asteroid rapidly plummeting toward Earth, I tried to think of any other possibilities. That’s when it came to me.
What if it wasn’t an asteroid?
What if it was a dinosaur atomic bomb?
I definitely know what you are thinking now.
“That’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard.”
And yea, sure. You’re right. But aren’t all facts hard to believe the first time you are hit by them? Imagine time traveling to 1606 and telling everyone they were made of atoms.
“Yes, good day, gents. I am here to inform you that you are composed entirely of invisible little balls.”
They’d think your brain was rotted by the drink (as mine might be).
But indulge me for a moment. Let’s analyze the possibilty. For it is not entirely insane.
If you use even the most generous estimate, beginning with Australopithecus (there was also an exhibit about the evolution of Homo Sapiens that I have some takes on), sorta people-type things have been around for four million years. p>
And in those four million years, we’ve built over 68,000 nuclear bombs. That’s a lot of bombs. So, in what we are always told is ‘the genetic blink of an eye,’ we’ve developed the ability to kill our own species. In fact, we’ve spent the past seventy years with the collectively shared ethos of ‘Let’s try not to blow up the world, but if it is gonna get blown up, like fuck I’m gonna let you be the only one to get in on that.’
Dinosaurs, my readers whom I didn’t lose 300 words ago, were on this Earth for 250 million years. Fourty-one times as long as people.
Yes, sure, it would have taken something a billion times the strength of the bombs at Hiroshima and Nagaski to pull off an annihilation event, but it only took 16 years after the first atom bomb was dropped to build one 1,500 times its strength. Extrapolate that number by a factor of 100 million and we’re lucky the dinosaurs didn’t blow the Earth off the face of the Earth.
Yea. WMDs. Where the D stands for Dinosaur. And Destruction.
Are you really doubting this? You think the life of a dinosaur was all cupcakes and slowly-grazing the land and being a fucking stupid dinosaur who didn’t know how to build an atomic bomb?
Fuck no. Dinosaurs were smart. You, believing that only the human brain is intelligent enough to conceive of nuclear weaponry is dino-discriminatory. It is.
“BUT OPPOSABLE THUMBS,” you just shouted at me. Yep, a little doohickey nub on the end of a body stick is the reason we have skyscrapers. Okay. Whatever. Sure. You know, just because you’ve only seen people with thumbs build atomic bombs does not mean that only people with thumbs can build atomic bombs.
Correlation, any fucking half-wit in a burned down barn holding a test tube full of sulfur will tell you, does not equal causation. Seeing is not believing. But even if it was, ya know what I’ve seen more often than meteor strikes? Atomic bombs go off.
(Note: I have not seen an atomic bomb go off.)
The more you think about it, the more logical it becomes. Answers are everywhere.
What the hell do you think caves are? Magical holes in the ground? Or former dinosaur mines, where Tyrannosaurus slave drivers whipped Velociraptor peasants (think about how good those claws were for digging!) until they had enough radioactive material to kill the Stegasauruses (These dinosaurs may not have all lived at the same time, but it matters not for my point).
And iridium shit found all over the K-T Boundary? That’s what the bomb was made of. It’s flammable. I checked. Scientists say iridium can only be found in space, as though they’ve checked all of space.
“Yup, that’s where all the iridium comes from.”
Such bullshit. So annoying. You are telling me we are certain what was in meteors 245 million years ago? Wasn’t it only two weeks ago we checked out a comet for the first time? And that’s a comet from today, not the super past or anything. But here comes Jeff Certitude, confident about the mineral composition of universe rocks from a time period so long ago we can barely grasp its existence.
Also, duh. All the iridium on Earth was used in the bomb.
I know you think I’m crazy, but let me leave you with this. Everything science has ever ascertained has later been disproven by better science (not necessarily factually accurate, but close enough).
So, sure, deny deny deny.
Or hop on the truth bus. Believe in the dinosaur atomic bomb. Because it happened.