Tuesday, November 4, 2014

A Reflection on Election Day

I was at the boat launch at Assunpink today when I ran into a young fellow, probably early twenties, maybe late teens, hard to tell. He asked me if I minded dogs and I said no, since I've found that people who ask generally have well-behaved dogs so he let his out to run around and that was fine. He asked me about my scope and after going through the usual routine of "no, it's not a camera," and then after explaining that "no, it's not a scope for stars, it's a scope for birds," we talked a little about what birds I find there--I trotted out eagles because that always impresses non-birders. Then he asked me if birds were mammals. 

"Uh, no, birds are avians." (I couldn't think of a better word.) Then, I don't exactly know why I said this, "They're descended from dinosaurs." 

He thought that was interesting and then asked, "Are dinosaurs before Christ, like 6000 years ago?" 

"A little more than that, like 60 million years ago." (I know. It's more like 65 million to 200 million years ago.)

"Ah." It was obvious he had no concept of "deep" time. 

Now friends, this guy is allowed to vote! Of course, I have no way of knowing if he actually exercised his franchise today, but if there was ever an argument for voter suppression, here it is. 

But he was a very sweet guy and his dog didn't bother me at all. 

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