Friday, May 1, 2009

Giant Cockroaches as Facebook Fodder

Currently, my Facebook status reads:
anna kiss is being asked about giant cockroaches - "as big as a cat." Now she is being told that there are things that may be giant cockroaches that are extinct and have big round things at their heads and two long tentacles. She thinks he means trilobites.

He drew a picture to show me what he meant:
Indeed, that appeared to be a Trilobite. But I had to ask about the other stuff he added on. Here's what I deduced from our conversation:
Upon further investigation, we found that dinosaurs and Trilobites did not live in the same age at all. The last of the Trilobites died out 42 million years before the Jurassic Period when the Brontosaurus lived and 100 million years before Brontosaurus itself. This lead to questions about how scientists know how old stuff is, which required another Google search about Carbon 14 dating in order to fully explain. We discovered the video here, which I think explained it well enough because we moved on.

We discussed the fact that the Brontosaurus is not really a Brontosaurus at all, but an Apatosaurus, a sauropod dinosaur. Brontosaurus is widely used to describe all sauropods since Othniel Charles Marsh mistakenly described the large dinosaur specimen he found in 1879 as a new genus and species, distinct from his previous juvenile Apatosaurus discovery.

Aleks also was disappointed with several of the Trilobite pictures we found as they did not match his vision of what a Trilobite looked like.

In the end, he was content to rattle on wondering if there might be a secret valley someplace blocked from all intrusions of civilization in which dinosaurs might still exist.

3 comments:

MarilynJean said...

Yeah. I agree with Aleks on that last point.

Mel said...

I think that was a movie in the 70's...'The Land That Time Forgot'...some very excellent special effects, if memory serves...

sunnymama said...

I love the title of this post! I'm so looking forward to conversations like this with sunnyboy :)
I left you an award on my blog - no need to pass it on unless you want to but I wanted you to know that I really like your blog!
http://sunnydaytodaymama.blogspot.com/2009/05/awards.html