Prehistoric happy meals

The impact of a good meal

In ancient dining news, scientists have discovered the remains of a million-year old Australian food court.

Approximately 800,000 years ago, a rock crashed down in Western Tasmania, crushing the prehistoric Darwin Crater Mall (shown above).  Scientists have found traces of cellulose (fiber), lignin (mesquite), and protein (brontosaurus meat).  Analysis of the unearthed organic matter suggests in that addition to the swamps and Rainforest Cafes that covered Tasmania at the time, there was at least one local bar and grill that served bronto-burgers and ribs, according to a recent paper in the journal Gastrobiology.

Lead author Kieren Howard noted an abundance of glass.  “The reason the glass is so abundant seems likely to relate to the presence of bars and taverns at the surface when the impact occurred.”

Howard said the impact was “A bit like when water from your spatula drips into a frying pan, having the right amount of water at the surface during impact may have increased the magnitude of the explosion.”  Scientists have long suspected that the extinction of the dinosaurs was due to water from a giant space spatula dripping on the Great Yucatan Frying Pan 65 million years ago.

The signature of the biomarkers suggests that fragments of fiber and powdered dinosaur protein were trapped in the molten glass, rapidly heating and degassing to create a frothy, nutritious smoothie.

Some archeo-restauranteurs have, of course, suggested that whatever events happened long ago clearly indicate that life Maybe originated somewhere other than Earth.  Scottish paleogourmand Stephen Bowden, whose request for anonymity was unintelligible because his mouth was full, contends that smoothie-filled glass containers could have been jettisoned from Earth into space.  These smoothie samples may have been laced with aliphatic biopolymer, a highly addictive byproduct of degassed brontosaurus meat, which is known to cause panspermia in space creatures.


According to this theory, first proposed by Hot and/or Bright Star Katherine Heigl (shown here reviewing research on an anti-panspermia vaccine), space dinosaurs, cosmic butterflies, and interstellar tadpoles enjoyed the free samples, and Maybe flocked to Earth in search of more delicious smoothies, and stayed for the free molybdenum.

Bowden speculated that rocky objects like Mars, the moon, and Titan could Maybe have ejected ice-encased organic material into space.  He was excited by the fact that there is no evidence, and since ice-encased organic material would never survive melting, no evidence is likely to exist.

He noted that “organics are abundant — and apparently more resilient than we ever could have predicted, at least in a terrestrial setting.”  He predicted that organic matter — possibly including cellulose and protein — could someday be found on Earth, but declined to speculate on when.

Howard said, “To the uniformitarian mind of the geologist, finding a discovery like ours suggests a common process.  Hey, we should get uniforms!”

(Click on the devilish Tasmanian cataclysm to read the original story.)

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