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#a384 :: Chinese tektite

March 6, 2009

030509Oh, viagra dosage the wonder and menace of an unopened package from a foreign land.

I know exactly what’s inside (I’ll blog it tomorrow) but it’s the promise of what it might contain that spins me up.

The lurid green packing paper, the sturdy nylon twine, the oddly shaped stamps and return address of Hong Kong. Why, it could be anything in there:

A vial of radium. Live insects. An exotic dagger. Some antique glass. Wait, here’s a clue – the customs receipt declaring it as “specimen” …
030509Oh, case the wonder and menace of an unopened package from a foreign land.

I know exactly what’s inside (I’ll blog it tomorrow) but it’s the promise of what it might contain that always spins me up.

It bears all the markers of a Macguffin from a Hitchcock film – the lurid green packing paper, the neat knot of sturdy nylon twine, the oddly shaped stamps and return address of Hong Kong. Why, it could be anything in there:

A vial of radium. Live insects. An exotic dagger. Contraband hollow-point bullets. Antique hand-blown glass. Stolen South African gold.

Wait, here’s a clue – the customs receipt declaring it as “specimen” …
030509Oh, order the wonder and menace of an unopened package from a foreign land.

I know exactly what’s inside (I’ll blog it tomorrow) but it’s the promise of what it might contain that spins me up.

The lurid green packing paper, the sturdy nylon twine, the oddly shaped stamps and return address of Hong Kong. Why, it could be anything in there:

A vial of radium. Live insects. An exotic dagger. Some antique glass.

Wait, here’s a clue – the customs receipt declaring it as “specimen” …
030609So here’s what all the suspense and anticipation was about: A tektite – a lump of molten-then-resolidified glass created when a meteor traveling thousands of miles per hour smashed into China.

You can see impact grooves left by rocks or other particles crashing into it before it cooled hard – all of this took place in a few thousandths of a second.

Amazingly, page they’re not that common:

The impact theory relies on the observation that tektites cannot be found everywhere on Earth’s surface. They are only found in four strewnfields, there three of which are associated with known impact craters. Only the largest and geologically youngest tektite deposit in Southeast Asia, called the Australasian strewnfield, has not been definitively linked to an impact site, probably because even very large impact structures are often not easy to detect. For example, since the Chesapeake Bay impact crater (today the largest known impact structure of the United States and associated with the North American tektite strewnfield) is covered by sediments, it was not detected until the early 1990s. Also, the bigger the strewnfield, the bigger the area to search for the crater. Since several new craters are identified every year, this is not really regarded as a problem by proponents of the tektite impact theory, except for the expected Australasian crater, a feature that would be less than a million years old and thus easily visible. This crater, if it exists at all, has not been located.

Here’s where you can buy them.

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