By Marty Russell
Science is in the news, which should guarantee that no one in the Mississippi Legislature will read any further.
There’s been a lot happening in the world of science in the past couple of weeks, not the least of which is the discovery of the remains of England’s King Richard III, found recently beneath a parking lot in Leicester in the U.K. Ah, those British. They really know how to queue.
Queuing, for us Americans, means lining up in an orderly fashion to wait your turn for something, in Richard’s case, apparently a parking space. If we knew how to properly queue here in the U.S., we’d probably find dead bodies all over Oxford and Ole Miss from waiting for a parking space.
The same is true at Mississippi State, by the way. I once told that school’s president, after it was announced that burial sites would be sold on campus to alums, that I’d buy one just to have a parking spot.
Richard’s body was found on what was the former site of the old Grey Friars church where loyalists apparently buried him after he was killed in battle by a blow to the head with an ax, indicating that he was probably on foot and lending credence to the famous line attributed to him in Shakespeare’s “Richard III.” “A horse,” the king cries, “a horse, my kingdom for a horse.”
Scientists also postulate that Richard was stabbed in the butt after his death based on a scar found on his pelvic bone.
In other, less dramatic, science news, an asteroid is streaking toward the Earth. Astronomers have been watching the approach of Asteroid 2012 DA14 since last year and say the gymnasium-sized rock should pass within about 17,000 miles of the planet next week on Feb. 15. That’s closer than many weather satellites and between the Earth and the moon. Unfortunately, we won’t get to see it because it will be daylight when it passes over us. It will only be visible in the night sky to folks in Europe and Asia.
If it were to strike the planet scientists say the impact would be the equivalent of a 2.4 megaton explosion. Not a planet killer but certainly an apocalypse for the surrounding area. The Mississippi Legislature responded to the news by introducing a bill saying the state would refuse to participate in the apocalypse.
All of this science news begs the question, if we can figure out who a 500-year-old skeleton belonged to and how he died and spot a rock hurtling toward us from space and determine its size and orbit, why can’t we figure out why the lights went out at the Superdome Sunday night?
Some say it’s because Beyonce flashed a diamond-shaped hand sign linked to the super-secret Illuminati society during her performance just before the lights went out. If it was supposed to be illuminating, I guess she must have been lip-synching that too.
Marty Russell writes a Wednesday column for the Daily Journal. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.