As well as eating and drinking, Christmas is traditionally a time for doing very little. In celebration of this, we’ve compiled a few geological ways to pass the time during the holiday.
For the tweeters among you, David Pyle has the following suggestion:
“As you are sitting down on Sunday evening, perhaps to watch the final episode of Doctor Who, give a quick thought for the passing of time. Starting from January 1st, 2011, @GeologicTime has been tracking the passing epochs of Earth history, assuming that all 4600 million years are compressed into a single year. At about 7.15 pm on December 25th, the geological clock will reach the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary, marking the end of the dinosaurs, and the start of the rise to dominance of the mammals.”
Follow David on Twitter @davidmpyle !
And when celebrating Christmas in the comfort of your own home, spare a thought for those intrepid scientists who aren’t so lucky. For those of you in such a situation, Darwin’s diary of his time on the Beagle has some excellent suggestions for how to pass the time:
‘After dining in the Gun-room, the officers & almost every man in the ship went on shore. The Captain distributed prizes to the best runners, leapers, wrestlers. These Olympic games were very amusing; it was quite delightful to see with what school-boy eagerness the seamen enjoyed them: old men with long beards & young men without any were playing like so many children. Certainly a much better way of passing Christmas day than the usual one, of every seaman getting as drunk as he possibly can.’
And finally, we recommend scouring youtube for comedy references to geology, of which there are a surprising number. Here’s our top five – let us know if we’ve missed any! (a couple of these don’t seem to want to embed: click on the ‘watch on YouTube’ link to view…)
5: History of the velociraptor
4: Ross on dating
3. Geologist vs Sheldon
2: Geology isn’t a real science
1: Geologists are the coolest, sexiest men alive (this one has to be at the top!)
Thanks to all who’ve contributed to the blog this year – have a wonderful Christmas!