Welcome to the State of the Earth — A source for cosmonauts, subterranean mole people, and everyone in between. Each *indeterminate amount of time* the State of the Earth Address will present perspectives on the issues of the day, news from around the globe, and tips on how to be less of a goose (just in case anyone needs those).
Yellowstone: One of the most seismically active areas in the US. Covering the world with Ash.
We like to ponder tranquil thoughts, like the threat of supervolcano eruption and the subsequent devastation of mankind.
The Yellowstone supervolcano in particular has a tendency to erupt every 700,000 years. The most recent eruption was around 664,000 years ago, and sources say this has been adding to the pressure on Universal Pictures executives to release its delayed James Bond movie.
The United States Geological Survey notes that the odds of Yellowstone erupting in any given year are 0.00014 percent — lower than the odds of getting hit by a civilization-destroying asteroid, yet still higher than the odds of Novak Djokovic having a level-headed opinion on something.
TIPZ FOR SURVIVING IN A POST-SUPERVOLCANO WORLD
- When lava rolls through town, don’t panic! If movies and cartoons are correct, you can surf your way out of danger on a rock or good-sized oven tray.
- If your house is covered by several metres of volcanic ash, try your hand at winemaking! Nerello Mascalese is a grape variety famous for thriving on the slopes of Mt Etna, so perhaps start there. Salute!
- Should the eruption be quite large, leave some evolution textbooks in a safe place. The burgeoning mudskippers who come after the human race will need some tips on which of their flippers to evolve next.
Stay toasty, friends!
DATING & MATING GUIDE
Introducing the Dating & Mating Guide, in which MR. KOYA employs his endless wisdom to tell you what not to do.
Volume 1: Don’t eat your partner.*
Thanks to American actor Armie Hammer, we can now confirm that Cannibalism isn’t a good look in the 21st century. Celebrity scandal, moral philosophy, and legal issues aside, this really isn’t your best option health-wise. There’s the risk of contracting disease, particularly when cooked for any less than 4 hours at 170 C, and you’d gain a lot of weight, as the nutritional value of a human - around 80,000 calories - is overwhelmingly composed of fat. So instead, consider sinking your teeth into 1) our men's mental health upgrade page, and 2) a sandwich, yeah?
*You get a pass if you are a praying mantis, in which case this is a slightly evil but practical mating tactic.
2020: GO SPACE!
We KOYAN’s don’t stay blue for long. 2020 may have been a bummer down here for us humans on Earth, but it was a banner year for space exploration Homo Sapien-style.
Hitting escape velocity this year: North America, China, Japan, India, Australia and the Middle East - and a whole heap of other people and machines getting the hell out of here.
Here’s the list of our collective space achievements:
- Feb 6 - Solar orbiter, ESA and NASA launches.
- May 30 - Bob and Doug blast skyward on SpaceX’s first NASA Mission. They carry a plush toy and NASA nutrition.
- July 23 China launches its first Mars mission
- July ?? Not to be outdone by China, the United Arab Emirates launched its first Mars Mission, the Hope probe.
- Dec 2 - China lands a lunar probe and grabs some moon rocks
- Dec 6 Japan crash lands its asteroid samples in the Australian outback after a six-year mission.
- Victor Glover becomes the first Black astronaut to arrive at the International Space Station for a long-term stay
- A Harvard physicist argues that we have been visited by aliens in the form of Oumuamua
- Oh, and Space Force gets a logo
KULTURE SPOTLIGHT - BULL RUNNING
For centuries, the Hamer tribe of cattle herders and farmers have lived tucked away in the Ethiopian Omo Valley. Taking their occupation seriously, a historic and very specific manhood ritual has continued - teenage Hamer boys must run across the backs of 10 cows four times without falling to prove their bravery. To up the challenge, the cattle are smeared with dung to make the run a slippery one.
An interesting generational twist? It is up to the boy’s father to determine when they are ready to participate in the cattle crawl, meaning some as young as 5 partake in the bull jump. Meanwhile at 5, your dad was just trying to teach you how to tie your shoes (thank god for velcro straps).
Although you’re most likely not running across the backs of dung-stained cows to prove your manhood, there are definitely bull-sized challenges in each of our lives that need addressing. Take a chapter out of the Hamer tribe’s book; call up your dad, don’t be afraid to get a little dirty, and grab your bull by the horns.
There are always new ways to style our heads. Or indeed, old ways reintroduced, such as the mullet. A lack of barber visits during lockdown gave many of us longer locks and - dare we say it - we were enjoying the neck tickles!
But the mullet hair cut (the term wasn’t coined until 1994) did not originate with a 1972 David Bowie as Ziggy Stardust. It has been sported by warriors for thousands of years due to its ability to keep the neck warm and dry, keep eyes unhampered, and allow a helmet to fit snugly.
So if it is back in fashion, we welcome it as a glorious act of freedom of expression. We are, however, reminded of a particular Oscar Wilde declaration: “Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months.”
Mullet Credits: Getty Images