Man, time does fly. More than six weeks have passed since the last installment of this series. With so many days drifting by like tumbleweeds on the prairie, I’ve accumulated lots of potential items, including recommendations from our readers. I’ll have to save some of them for the future or this post would go on and on and on, and I know my metalheads, so the last thing I wanna do is overtax your limited attention spans.
What we do in this series is feature images, videos, occurrences, and other items that we think are metal, even though they’re not music. Today, we’re going to start off with a couple of photos and then go from there.
You’re looking at Item One at the top of this post. You get one guess what that is. If you guessed the cover art for the next Graveworm album, you’re close, but no cigar. If you guessed an image of a hydrothermal worm made with a scanning electron microscope, congratulations. These worms are deep-sea creatures and live near hydrothermal vents in the ocean floor. They are very small — almost as small as a bacterium. This photo magnifies the worm 525 times. The true width of the field captured in this photo is actually 568/1000 of a millimeter.
I don’t know about you, but I’m really fuckin’ glad these things aren’t the size of sharks, or pro football linemen. And as far as I’m concerned, they can stay down on the ocean floor. The original of this image is here. Thanks to our buddy Ullr for the tip on this photo. Our remaining items are after the jump.
Yep, that photo up there is our second item. You don’t often see a moose in a tree, unless of course you’re totally shit-faced. In this case, it was the moose that was totally shit-faced. A fellow named Per Johansson returned from work to his home in Saro just south of Gothenburg, Sweden, and found a moose lodged in one of his neighbor’s trees. According to Johansson, “It must have been drunk after eating fermented apples and as it was reaching out for more fruit it must have slipped and fallen into the tree.”
Johansson called the local fire and rescue department, which succeeded in getting the moose out of the tree — whereupon it collapsed on the ground and went to sleep. Swedes being Swedes, they left him there to sleep it off. It was still sleeping the next morning.
According to a spokesman for the Gothenburg Fire and Rescue Department, “Moose are attracted by the apple trees, and in the autumn when the apples have fallen off the trees we normally have at least one of these cases of intoxication.” Huh. And I thought Gothenburg was just populated by drunken death metal bands. Drunk moose in trees: that’s metal! (The original story is here; thanks to ElvisShotJFK for the tip on this one.)
Since we’re already in Sweden, we might as well stay there for this next item. This is a story I saw in the online edition of the Seattle Times. When you see the headline, you’ll understand why I stopped and read the story.
Swedish man caught trying to split atoms at home
August 3, 2011
A Swedish man who was arrested after trying to split atoms in his kitchen said Wednesday he was only doing it as a hobby.
Richard Handl told The Associated Press that he had the radioactive elements radium, americium and uranium in his apartment in southern Sweden when police showed up and arrested him on charges of unauthorized possession of nuclear material.
The 31-year-old Handl said he had tried for months to set up a nuclear reactor at home and kept a blog about his experiments, describing how he created a small meltdown on his stove.
Only later did he realize it might not be legal and sent a question to Sweden’s Radiation Authority, which answered by sending the police.
This is fucked up on so many levels I don’t know where to start. I mean, I’ve had meltdowns on my stove before, but not that kind of meltdown. And really, how did he think he was going to split atoms in the kitchen? Puree the radioactive elements really fast in a blender? And how do you not have a clue that possession of uranium in your home could be illegal? And maybe most perplexing of all, where the fuck did he get the uranium?
I guess the police arrested him because he didn’t have a fission license. He can probably kiss his damage deposit goodbye. (Credit to Seattle Times readers for those choice comments.) Trying to split atoms on your stove: That’s fucken metal!
This next item comes to us from the blog of Dr. John Marshall, a mathematical biologist working at the California Institute of Technology, which featured the following question and answer (I’m excerpting the answer — for the whole thing, go here):
Q: Your recent article regarding sex at the speed of light has caused me great concern, for if my boyfriend were to ejaculate whilst thrusting into me at the speed of light, then would not his semen be travelling faster than the speed of light? Could this superluminal semen travel back in time to fertilise me before he put on his condom? And does this thought experiment disprove the theory of relativity?
A: The average speed of ejaculation has been measured to be approximately 45 km/hr (just below the allowable speed limit in most suburban areas). This is the average speed of the ejected semen relative to the ejaculatory penis, and can be increased by training the Kegel muscles (by pretending to withhold your urine). Anyway, according to Galilean relativity, if one is to ejaculate whilst thrusting inwards at the speed of light, then the relative speed of their ejaculatory semen will be equal to the sum of the two speeds, namely the speed of light plus 45 km/hr. In other words, Galilean relativity says that the semen will be travelling faster than the speed of light. Einstein’s special theory of relativity showed this to be impossible.
By assuming that the speed of light is the same in all inertial reference frames, Einstein showed the speed of light to be the cosmic speed limit. Actually, only massless particles can reach this limit, because an infinite amount of energy is needed to accelerate a massive object (and a penis is a massive object) up to the speed of light. It is possible to persist with the calculations at the speed of light, but this invariably leads to paradoxes, such as a penis having no apparent length, and therefore semen travelling through a penis with no apparent length. According to the semen, time stops, and space contracts down to two dimensions. Obviously, it is more realistic to consider the scenario of ejaculation at speeds arbitrarily close to the speed of light.
At such speeds, the relativistic velocity addition formula applies. Suppose your boyfriend has been training his Kegel muscles and he can achieve a speed of ejaculation of 2% the speed of light. Then, if he is to ejaculate while thrusting inwards at 99% the speed of light, his semen will be travelling not at 101% the speed of light as common sense would suggest, but rather at 99.04% the speed of light. This relativistic semen will then be decelerated to about 94.2% the speed of light as it escapes the gravitational pull of the penis.
An average ejaculation produces approximately two teaspoons of semen (this amount decreases with age, and increases with time since last ejaculation). Anyway, two teaspoons of semen travelling at 94.2% the speed of light will create enormous air resistance, which will heat up the semen in the same fashion as a spaceship re-entering the Earth’s atmosphere. The semen will burst into flames almost instantaneously, creating deafening sonic booms in its wake.
Meanwhile, two teaspoons of flaming semen will generate enormous impact forces, sufficient to rip straight through the structural integrity of an extra-strength Durex condom. But you will have much greater concerns than an unwanted pregnancy. The relativistic flaming semen will pierce a small hole straight through your lower torso, just like a speeding bullet, only incinerating the surrounding tissue as it passes through. Relativistic ejaculation brings true meaning to the question, “Is that your gun in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?” Well it’s not a gun baby… it’s a rocket launcher!
Physics thought problems involving semen traveling at near relativistic speeds: Now that’s metal! (Thanks to Phro — of course — for pointing me to this article.) Pass me another fermented apple, will you?
Nuke this from orbit. It’s the only way to be sure.
So, we’re kind of ending where we began. Nature is scary as shit, and we’re mighty fuckin’ lucky that some things in nature are . . . small. Like the Devil’s Flower Mantis (a/k/a Idolomantis Diabolica — which could easily be 1349’s next album title). Sheee. It. This is one metal motherfucker. Don’t let these get into the growth hormones. Or any fermented apples. If you think of any clever captions for this, drop ’em in the Comments.
(Credit to TYWKIWDBI for this video.)
Phro sent me this next video. It’s not metal. What’s metal is what the video doesn’t show. Yeah, lorises look all “aww, cute!” when you’re brushing them, but I’m here to tell you that if you’re late with their grubs, they go medieval on your ass in a heartbeat.
Well, that’s it for this edition of THAT’S METAL!. I’m gonna grab me a couple more fermented apples and listen to this Graveworm track (they do have a new album coming out on October 21 on Nuclear Blast, but it doesn’t have a hydrothermal worm on the cover). Enjoy the rest of your fucking day.