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You are browsing the archive for February 2019 - Mountain Beltway.

23 February 2019

Michael Crichton vs. Charles Dickens

Because of my commute, I consume multiple books at the same time. I listen to one in the car, and I read another (or more than one other) at home, on traditional paper. This past week, I read Jurassic Park, by Michael Crichton and listened to David Copperfield, by Charles Dickens. I chose the Dickens volume just to have something to listen to that wasn’t NPR coverage of our disastrous …

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22 February 2019

Friday folds: Sardinian tuff

It’s the last day of the work week. Some photos of isoclinal syn-depositional folding in Sardinian tuff will get your Friday off on the right foot.

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18 February 2019

What the Best College Students Do, by Ken Bain

Periodically, the administrators at my college will buy a lot of copies of a particular book, and then distribute them to the faculty as a way of sharing a useful resource or message. Generally, I find that I have other more urgent ways to spend my reading time: books about astronomy or rocks or ancient life or politics or philosophy. But this semester there are a couple of new variables …

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14 February 2019

Friday fold: an arch of gypsum in Sicily

Ahh, Sicily on a Friday morning. Join us to examine a spectacular arch of gypsum from the Messinian evaporite package.

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11 February 2019

When Bugs Were Big, Plants Were Strange, and Tetrapods Stalked the Earth: A Cartoon Prehistory of Life Before Dinosaurs, by Hannah Bonner

It has been a while since I’ve reviewed any kids’ books here, but this one was so good that I just have to tell you about it. My son is now 6 and a half years old, and he’s interested in all sorts of natural history topics. Given that I’m a geologist, he’s probably more Earth-science-focused than the average kid, but my wife is a biologist, so he’s got plenty …

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8 February 2019

Friday fold: Falte an der Riedbergpaßstraße im Allgäu

A Friday fold from Germany showing an overturned sequence of sedimentary layers. Bedding / cleavage relationships show which limb is tectonically inverted. Furthermore, this fold was an “Aha!” moment for the budding geological mind of a small boy.

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6 February 2019

Dalradian schist at Glen Roy

We saw last week how glaciation carved out a valley in Scotland called Glen Roy. As the glacier ground into the landscape, it liberated tremendous numbers of sedimentary particles from the bedrock, which is composed of Dalradian metamorphic rocks (mainly porphyroblastic schist in my observation). Then once that now-U-shaped valley had been deglaciated, a new glacier dammed it, making a lake that rose and filled the declivity of Glen Roy, …

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4 February 2019

Adventures in the Anthropocene, by Gaia Vince

I just finished reading Gaia Vince’s 2015 volume called Adventures in the Anthropocene. The book chronicles the new version of Earth that humanity’s actions have enacted, exploring all sorts of relevant topics including biodiversity, energy use, urbanization, human population, ocean pollution, fish farming, deforestation, architecture, solar radiation management, etc. It’s quite comprehensive. The book I’m familiar with that comes close in scope and subject matter is Earth Odyssey by Mark …

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1 February 2019

Friday fold: Two spectacular folds from Oman

The William & Mary “Rock Music” class has returned from Oman, bearing cultural insights and Friday fold photos!

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