“Hey, Corn Pop! Come at me, bro! I brought some muscle with me this time! And her husband.”
NOTE: I think I wrote this already, but if you’re using this to study for the History Advanced Placement Examination, the only college you’ll get into is Klown Kollege. Or you’ll be confused with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The below is meant for entertainment (hopefully) use only.
The Age of Cool Dinosaurs
Brought to you by the Biden Administration
Hand Over Your Wallet
Following the mass extinction of the Permian Period brought on by Thanos, the remaining Avengers gathered together in New Yo….oh. Wait. That’s not right. My bad.
Anyway, the life which was left poked their heads out of some burrow, turned to their neighbor and asked, “Hey, WTF just happened? Ooh, the smart-ass dimetrodons are gone. Cool.”
They really shouldn’t have been too cocky, though. Because, even though they didn’t know it (calendars hadn’t been invented yet, after all), they found themselves at the doorstep of the Mesozoic Era. It was during this multi-million year period when the really big (and, let’s face it, cool) dinosaurs were born (Hatched. Whatever. I don’t know. Do you know? I didn’t think so. Shut up).
And eat them.
The Brontosaurus (which nerds now call “Brachiosaurus”), Stegosaurus, Allosaurus, Pterosaurs, Coldsaurus, and Tyrannosaurus (among many others. I’m just sticking with the “saurus” theme. You’re welcome.) made their appearance on the world stage during the Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous periods.
NOTE: The Bidenosaurus was banished from the dinosaur world, despite offering free massages to juvenile T-Rex’s.
This included the Velociraptors which nobody really heard of until Jurassic World.
During this time frame, mammals begin to evolve themselves (not humans yet, despite that painting of cavemen fighting raptors with machine guns on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel). Since they were so small, they were certainly no match for their lizard (or whatever they were…they may have been proto-birds, Kryptonians, or ancestors of Al-Qaeda…who knows?) neighbors, though.
Lucky for the mammals that they were small and thus, mostly immune from the next mass extinction caused by an asteroid strike (or bad clams). The climate changed abruptly from a mostly humid, tropical, frankly uncomfortable, world (you know, a lot like Disney World in August). A lot (probably most. Too lazy to look it up) of the life was wiped out.
Yeah, of course, the neat dinosaurs were killed because they could not survive in this new environment. And they forgot to pack warm coats.
Frikkin’ asteroids, amirite?
This brought the world into the “Cenozoic Era.” It was here when newer and bigger models of mammals emerged onto the scene.
Sensing the coast was clear, apes slowly began to crawl down from the same trees they crawled up when some random punk dinosaur decided to pick on someone smaller than them to impress the lady dinosaurs. Deciding to stretch their legs, these proto-humans began grunting a common language, fashioned rocks into tools, became lawyers, and decided to stroll into that neat-looking garden with the neat-looking tree in the middle.
Where they were killed by Adam and Eve.
Believe it or not, we are still living in the Cenozoic Era. This means that, Betty White notwithstanding, we’re relative youngsters in what is by far the shortest geologic time period in world history. Geologists, archeologists, anthropologists, paleontologists, masochists, taxidermists, Scientologists, botanists, gynecologists, phlebotomists…whatever…
state that this era won’t come to an end until after another mass extinction.
Next time: Who Turned the Heat Off?
Two of you may have noticed that I haven’t written much (i.e., not at all) here over the course of the past few weeks. I’ve been busy doing things like cle…none of your business. I also took a cross-country trip to Seattle to attend a family wedding and see if the Starbucks there are really better than the Starbucks here (HINT: they’re not). Anyway, I waited until today to write again. It seems appropriate given the deadly serious nature of the day. This is a reprint of something probably more than a few of you have read before. Even so, its impact carries through to this day.
I’ll be back in a few days…
It was just before one o’clock in the afternoon on September 11th (a sad commentary: we don’t even need to identify the year anymore) when my maintenance supervisor stuck his head into my room to wake me.
“Sir, someone just flew a plane into the World Trade Center.”
Minutes later, I watched, horrified, as a second plane struck the South tower. And then, as both of the monstrously huge structures tumbled to the ground as if kicked by a petulant child.
My unit and I were participating in a multi-nation exercise at the Naval Air Station in Keflavik, Iceland (this explains why it was the afternoon). A round-the-clock operation, the Keflavik Tactical Exchange gave us a unique chance to evaluate each other’s capabilities should we ever needed to flex our respective militaries. Little did we know that we were preparing for a type of war which belonged to the past.
Because the 21st Century came roaring into each of our lives on that late summer day.
Naturally, the exercise was immediately cancelled. Foreign aircrews (funny that I call them “foreign’” since we were actually foreigners, too) beat hasty returns to their home bases. We were told that American airspace was closed indefinitely.
Station security forces went into their highest readiness posture. Watch teams at the main gate beefed up, rings of barbed wire cordoned off perceived sensitive areas, and armed patrols roamed the perimeter.
My watch teams and I, on the other hand, remained at our billeting. Only in Iceland for the exercise, we were considered non-essential personnel who’d only get in the way.
And so we spent the next few days.
I received a worried phone call from my wife during this time. She fretted over my safety. I assured her that I was fine but omitted the fact that I was more concerned for her and the kids.
You see, my family lived only a couple hours from New York and only a few from Washington.
The ensuing few days was a frantic search for whatever updates we could glean from the news and how in the world we’d get ourselves and thousands of pounds of equipment back home.
Most importantly, we desperately wanted to know how we could get into the fight. Whatever the fight was.
Four days later, U.S. airspace was opened to military traffic. As I glanced through the window of the Navy patrol plane which took us home, I was struck at how empty the sky was-with the exception of the one plane which approached us as we crossed into the United States. It came no closer than a few miles before it disappeared.
I think it was a fighter aircraft.
What’s more, the radio circuits, normally full of the cacophony of countless air traffic controllers, were eerily silent. The only ones “on the air” were the handful which guided us home. All else were hushed into silence.
Our route of flight took us just south of Manhattan, well out of sight of land. At that distance, even at the altitude at which we were flying, it was impossible to see any of the city skyline.
But, we did see a huge pall of gray-brown smoke lingering in the air like the death shroud that it was.
As we touched ground at the Willow Grove naval air station, there was nobody to greet us. There really wasn’t much of anything by way of an acknowledgment that we were back. Somehow, it seemed fitting.
After all, we all had something much more important to do.
Go home to our families.
In memory of:
Commander Bill Donovan, USN
AW2 (NAC/AW) Joseph Pycior, USN
and the thousands whose only crime was going to work that day.