A lighthearted look at news, events, culture and everyday life in New York.
Yesterday an important piece of news broke which shook the nation: the dinosaurs may have farted themselves to death.
No, seriously. A real scientist really published a study in a professional journal positing that according to his research, methane gas expelled by dinos may very well have contributed to the acceleration of the greenhouse effect, which in turn affected climate change, which ultimately resulted in <SPOILER ALERT> the ice age which killed them all.
Talk about silent but deadly.
Ba dum dum.
Okay, that synopsis may be an oversimplification. And plenty more non-fart-centric scientists have come out of the woodwork to set the record straight and present a more sober and far less hilarious view on how much of an effect on greenhouse gases dino wind really had in comparison to all of the many other environmental factors that existed 200 million years ago, and yadda yadda yadda. Killjoys.
The most crucial finding here is not necessarily that global warming = dinosaur farts, though I won’t deny its significance. It is, on the other hand, that a theory which could easily have originated with a 7-year-old boy can become a legitimate, scientific, published study. This should be heartening news for every kid who has ever held an unproven conviction which classmates and schoolteachers have deemed ridiculous. If prehistoric farts are news, what else are we missing? Perhaps dogs can read our minds and there are colonies of elves who live at the center of the earth. Doesn’t it seem like earthquakes might have something to do with them? Maybe our lakes were created by Pterodactyl pee. Who says there aren’t mermaids who can create tsunamis? I’ve always suspected that the trees talk to each other at night when no one else is around. And what if Uranus was literally . . . well never mind.
There’s no mind so fertile as that of a child. So inspired by the new nytimes.com feature, “Kids Draw the News,” we’d like to introduce CBS New York’s “Kids Propose Scientific Hypotheses for Further Professional Investigation.”
But we really want to hear from your children. We bet they’ve got enough ideas to fill a year’s worth of entertaining journal articles. Go ask, and report back!
Dear Readers: While I am rarely at a loss for words, I’m always grateful for column ideas. Please feel free to e-mail me your suggestions.
Nina Pajak is a writer and publishing professional living with her husband on the Upper West Side.
The Nina In New York Archives: