This is an abbreviated post. There is a major fire near The Pink Flamingo. This is all the time I …Read the Rest
Even Pat Robertson has had enough. You could see the impatience when he basically castigated this stupid women for asking …Read the Rest
When The Pink Flamingo was in elementary school, I read a book about the discovery of the coelacanth. I’ve been …Read the Rest
I guess this is another chapter in Only in New Mexico! Ten years ago or so there were stories about …Read the Rest
Would you believe the male Smilodon Fatalis was a “pussy cat”?
“…The researchers report that while male American lions were considerably larger than females, male and female sabertoothed cats were indistinguishable in size. The findings suggest that sabertooths may have been less aggressive than their fellow felines, researchers say. In species where males fight for mates, bigger, heavier males have a better chance of winning fights, fending off their rivals and gaining access to females. After generations of male-male competition, the males of some species evolve to be much larger than their mates.
Most big cats have a form of sexual dimorphism where males are bigger than females, said co-author Julie Meachen-Samuels, a biologist at the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center in Durham, NC. So she and Wendy Binder of Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles wanted to know if extinct sabertooths and American lions showed the same size patterns as big cats living today.
After a long period without decent dino news (my new painting by Doug Chaffee has arrived, btw) we’re now being treated to just scads of new theories, extinctions, and all sorts of feathered critters.
Did Dinos go extinct from a massive asteroid hit or from volcanism?
“…The cause of the dinosaurs’ demise is far from an open-and-shut case. Though many experts support the Chicxulub impact theory, some question whether the extinction was caused by an impact at all, and suggest that climate changes and volcanism were responsible. One line of reasoning holds that all three phenomena were to blame.
Gerta Keller, a geoscientist at Princeton University, found evidence for massive volcanic activity coinciding with the time of the extinction in an area called the Deccan Traps in India. Keller has advocated that this volcanism was the main culprit behind the dinosaurs’ downfall. Her idea has long been controversial and remains so. She is bluntly dubious of Chatterjee’s argument.
“We have worked extensively throughout India and investigated a number of the localities where Sankar Chatterjee claims to have evidence of a large impact he calls Shiva crater,” Keller wrote in an e-mail along with colleague Thierry Adatte of Switzerland’s Universite de Neuchâtel. “Unfortunately, we have found no evidence to support his claims… Sorry to say, this is all nonsense.”
On Sunday afternoon it dawned on The Pink Flamingo that we are taking the whole issue of climate change and politicians in the wrong direction. Lindsey is being hammered for a piece he co-authored with John Kerry for the NYTimes. Even I cringed – because I knew he would be hammered for it.
Suddenly, like the light flashing down from an alien craft about to abduct some drunken deer hunter (note that there is no intentional insult to deer hunters implied) The Pink Flamingo had an epiphany.
GARBAGE IN GARBAGE OUT
Remember that old computer term – garbage in garbage out?
I think expecting our elected officials to know everything about everything, or even a little bit about everything is just not logical. None of us know everything about everything. We specialize. The era of a eclectic “renaissance” style education no longer exists.
Take climate change – please.
The only reason The Pink Flamingo has a different take on things is because of an essay the late great, Stephen Jay Gould penned for his monthly column in the Natural History magazine. Aside from filling The Pink Flamingo with a life-time desire to be a writer of essays, this article tweaked my fancy. I was going into high school, volunteering doing the candy stripe thing at our local hospital. I remember reading the article after my father picked me up at the hospital there in Seneca. The mail was on the back seat, where I was consigned as he and my grandfather drove home.
I read the Gould essay on the drive to Fair Play, fascinated. My current love of all things dinosaur is nothing new. I’ve been fascinated since I was a little kid and saw that now legendary T-Rex fossil in the Natural History Museum in NYC. While it might take a calculator to figure out how many scientists have been inspired by that same critter, including the great Gould himself, The Pink Flamingo never went beyond fascination when it came to dinosaurs. But – it did give me a reason to read geology, paleontology, and delve into archeology as a high school student.
The specic Gould essay, which I can no longer find, was about the fact that the planet was due for another round of what he felt might be a cycle of ice ages.
Golly – an ice age?
I read everything I could on the subject, only to decide upon a life-long fascination with Post-Roman Britain instead of science.
It seems like the alleged time frame of La Morte de Arthur and the alleged fall of the Roman Empire all occurred around 475AD – 550AD. No one in their right mind would even put the idea of the death of Arthur, fall of Rome, and an ice age together. BUT – they all happened around the same time.
Seems like David Keys also put 2 + 2 together to come up with an ice age. Publisher’s Weekly reviewed the book:
“…In Keys’s startling thesis, a global climatic catastrophe in A.D. 535-536–a massive volcanic eruption sundering Java from Sumatra–was the decisive factor that transformed the ancient world into the medieval, or as Keys prefers to call it, the “proto-modern” era. Ancient chroniclers record a disaster in that year that blotted out the sun for months, causing famine, droughts, floods, storms and bubonic plague. Keys, archeology correspondent for the London Independent, uses tree-ring samples, analysis of lake deposits and ice cores, as well as contemporaneous documents to bolster his highly speculative thesis. In his scenario, the ensuing disasters precipitated the disintegration of the Roman Empire, beset by Slav, Mongol and Persian invaders propelled from their disrupted homelands. The sixth-century collapse of Arabian civilization under pressure from floods and crop failure created an apocalyptic atmosphere that set the stage for Islam’s emergence. In Mexico, Keys claims, the cataclysm triggered the collapse of a Mesoamerican empire; in Anatolia, it helped the Turks establish what eventually became the Ottoman Empire; while in China, the ensuing half-century of political and social chaos led to a reunified nation. Huge claims call for big proof, yet Keys reassembles history to fit his thesis, relentlessly overworking its explanatory power in a manner reminiscent of Velikovsky’s theory that a comet collided with the earth in 1500 B.C. Readers anxious about future cataclysms will take note of Keys’s roundup of trouble spots that could conceivably wreak planetary havoc….”
Would you believe the global temperature during the height of the Roman Republic and Empire ranged something like 4 degrees warmer than it is now?
Civilizations flourish during a time of global warming and had a tendency to either fall or wax inward during periods of cooling.
Please expain the importance of the word “Greenland”.
Now, the following completely esoteric lines of study are something no “normal” person who has a “real” life would even bother thinking about, let alone own dozens of books about the above.
There’s even more.
The Pink Flamingo has been interested in astronomy and space even longer than dinosaurs.
Get the picture?
Add a fascination with geology, history, King Arthur, Ancient America fringe archaeology, and a half-way decent working knowledge of science and you have a walking rebuttal to the current infant “science” of climatology. (it is a joke)
We are dealing with a rather fascinating solar minimum. For some strange reason, the utter lack of sunspots indicates a cooling surface on the sun. Anyone who knows anything know the cooler the sun, the cooler the earth.
Know anything about the relationship between very messy volcanic explosions and global cooling?
The Pink Flamingo subscribes to the theory of history that someone must delve, not only into the usual historical tools, papers, archives, etc, but must also integrate misc. sciences be them social, earth, biological, archaeology, or political in order to write history.
What if a third of “known” dino species never really existed?
What’s a little kid to do with all those different dinos he can identify on sight?
“…The lean and graceful Nanotyrannus is one strong example. Thought to be a smaller relative of T. rex, the supposed species is now considered by many experts to be based on a misidentified fossil of a juvenile T. rex.
Evidently the Archaeopteryx has a metabolism much like that of a Velociraptor. Now, would someone please explain to The Pink Flamingo why here bird phobia is so irrational?
“...When alive, Archaeopteryx looked like a cross between a bird and a dinosaur, as it sported feathers, a wishbone (fully fused clavicle) and a reverse first toe on its foot (which allows some birds to perch) like birds. But it also had non-avian dinosaur features like a long bony tail, claws and teeth.
And now slow growth can be added to Archaeopteryx’s dinosaur side.
There is a new bigfoot in town – and we’re not talking a wayward primate. We’re talking a wealth of dino info lately!
“…”These are very large distances,” said Hantzpergue. “We’ve seen tracks of maybe 50 metres in France, around 100 metres in Switzerland, and the world record is in Portugal … with about 150 metres. Now, we still have many hectares to search but we will undoubtedly have more than 150 metres at Plagne.”
Make fun of my bird phobia, I dare you. Did you know that Velociraptors may have pirched in trees? “…Phillip …Read the Rest
Velociraptors had feathers. I told you birds were scary. They are now classified as living dinosaurs. Now – go make …Read the Rest