Thursday, June 26, 2008

JJNN 33 June 26th, 2008

Welcome again to JJNN for Thursday June 25th, 2008. Today I will talk a little bit about a fossil uncovered in Japan and what a bunch of Japanese students thought it would be fun to do in Italy.

Today's first news story is given here. So, imagine this. It is your first trip to Italy and you are going around to see all the sights. You and your friends find yourselves at that Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore, which is a building that is over 700 years old. You think it would be cool to have some way for your and your friends to really remember being to this wonderful world heritage building. So, what do you do? Do you take a picture? Do you draw a picture of the building? Or, do you write your names on the building for all to see?

Well, most normal people would do one of the first two choices, but not everyone. A group of 3 students from Kyoto Sangyo University decided it would be great to draw their names and pictures along a part of one way of that 700 year old building. This group of 3 students were not the only group from Japan to do such a thing either. Six students from Gifu's Women's collage did the same thing.

This makes me wonder what Japanese people have against historical buildings. There are much better ways to remember you where in a place than writing the equivalent of "I was here" on the wall. Maybe they just didn't think about what they are doing, but I hardly doubt that is the fact. Well I guess now that I have turned 30 I can point and laugh at the stupid things 20 year olds do.

The second news story is given here. I really love archeology. When I was young I wanted to be an archaeologist. Well, maybe for a week. I mean I think I wanted to be a lot of different things for about a week each. I still have that dream to be an astronaut, though if I get married in space.

Any way the story is about the oldest amphibian fossil found in Japan. The fossil was found in in a geological strata that dates back 245 million years ago. This dates back to the Triassic period, before dinosaurs were the dominate vertebrate on the planet (according to wikipedia). It is part of a extinct subclass of amphibian called labyrinthodontia (Greek for "maze tooth"). It is related to the mastodonsaurus pictured below.

Cute, huh?

Any way, it is now time for the word of the day. Today's word is 両生類(りょうせいるい). It is pronounced ryousei-rui and means amphibian. I never did like amphibians, but I guess if I had one of those things for a pet I would like them a lot more.

That's it for today. See you next time at JJNN.

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