Townsville Twist

Sunday, 26 March 2006

Getting our rocks off

After being told at the beginning of our Geology prac that we were NOT to think about sex for the next three hours (I kid you not), we were taught how to tell the difference between silty rock and not-silty rocks: eat them. That's right, "just snap a bit off and have a chew. Don't knock it til you try it". Being the person who had snorted a bowl of soup the previous evening, I was naturally voted the official rock taste tester. I take great pride in these kinds of juvenile achievements so I took this highly flattering and sexy photo of myself:

I said it was definitely siltstone instead of mudstone. Other people thought differently, but they hadn't eaten it. I'd better be bloody right.

There were also a few interesting tidbits in the prac book itself. One was this warning:

"Even though taste is a very good way to distinguish between shale and siltstone, DON'T taste this particular rock. Don't make your friends (or enemies) eat it either. Wash your hands after examining this specimen. Really. Do not suck your fingers or pick your nose. There are metals present in potentially toxic quantities should you suck, lick or eat the specimen. Immediate death is very unlikely, it would more likely be a protracted and painful death, or just slowly damage your health. No, it's not mercury or arsenic, it's lead, so you'd probably have to eat several rocks to get really sick."

Another is this little exercise. As you can probably tell by now, our Geology lecturer is a weeny bit quirky.

"Exercise 6: Briefly examine 3/20, bauxite from Weipa. The round things are called 'pisolites' formed by..."(bla bla bla, scientific boring stuff)..." Say the word pisolite out loud (pronounced 'pizzolite'). Do not say this word to your answer sheet."

There was nothing else involved in that exercise. I worry about these guys that get hard ons from looking at dirt.

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