October 4th, 2004

itisgood

Evolution is often funny, but it all depends on your vantage point.

Today my archaeology prof handed around a set of obsidian microblades, real honest-to-goodness thousands-of-years-old artifacts, for us to look at. We've spent something like the last three classes talking about the wonders of stone-age technology, and how impressive and sharp and effective stone tools were: obsidian can be about a molecule thick at a worked edge. Sharp. As they're about halfway around the table, he warns: "Be careful about the edges, won't you? They're lethal sharp and can cut right to the bone if you exert even slight pressure in the right way."

The box of blades had already been through my hands at that point, and as I watched my classmates handle the blades with new fear, I decided two things. One, that human civilization hasn't changed much in the past several thousand years, except in size and complexity. And two, that my professor probably reads the Darwin Awards.
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