I noticed several articles about scientists’ discovery of “Earth’s twin”. Subheads made me question this claim, so I decided to read one article further.
I am not a scientist, but I would argue against calling a planet a twin of Earth that has a “thick, gaseous atmosphere”, “orbits a red dwarf star”, is “60% larger than Earth”, and has surface temperatures “as high as 104C”.
My understanding of the word twin is that a certain similarity is required. Perhaps, scientists use a different definition...or do not learn or care about words.
I learned something, which I probably learned years ago in science class, but have forgotten. Even the laziest, most-indolent person is moving at 100,000 mph, which is the speed at which the earth moves in its orbit around the sun. That comforts me, because I can feel that I am active, even when I feel like doing nothing or when I do nothing..
Later in the same BBC program, I learned another forgotten fact. If you drive in a car at 60 mph on a road that runs along the equator in the direction of the earth’s rotation, you are actually moving at 1000 mph plus the 60 mph (1060 mph for the math-challenged among you), which is the speed of the car plus the rotation of the earth. (For the science-challenged, ie. Republicans, that’s a different speed than the one in the first paragraph.)
Now, are you not pleased that I passed on knowledge you may or may not have acquired in school, which will do you absolutely no good...but is interesting?
Anyone with a sense of humor, an appreciation of irony, and a minimum level of general knowledge (needed to get the irony!), will love Jon Stewart's Earth. (The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Presents Earth (The Book): A Visitor's Guide to the Human Race ) It's a book version of the best trockenbeerenauslese, chocolate truffles, or high-butterfat-contentbutter pecan ice cream: rich and satisfying. All are meant to be sipped or nibbled (except the ice cream, on which you can pig out) a bit at a time every few days and savored in a world of banal flavors.
If you're looking for something more intellectually stimulating and challenging, then you should try Richard Dawkins' fascinating book. The Ancestor's Tale: A Pilgrimage to the Dawn of Evolution
Prior to writing novels, the author enjoyed a multifaceted career: from decorated combat aviator to advertising professional to global communications director of a major consumer brand. He has traveled the world and met sports, film and television stars, political leaders, and royalty. He graduated from Middlebury College, is married, lives in Germany, and has two grown children.