Saturday, May 10, 2008

It's the Small Things

At work today, I was able to witness something that the average person will never be able to see. I saw, laid out in front of me, a skeleton of a person who had lived 5200 years ago! A man who teaches anatomy at Berkeley was kind enough to share the story of the person laid out before us:

The skeleton was found beneath (or in, I'm not sure how all that works) the largest pyramid in Egypt. I guess the pharaohs in Egypt were intrigued by dwarfs, more commonly known as midgets, and they were collected and employed as money counters and such. Well this particular skeleton was one of the helpers in the kitchen of this huge pyramid. 

According to the guy at Berkeley there are two main kinds of dwarfism, and this specimen was representative of neither of those types. He pointed out so many different elements, like how all the joints and the skull were the size of a normal-sized human. The parts that were small were the length of the legs and arms. And the feet and hands were tiny!!! One thing that was extra crazy was that the bones were very light weight--hardly any bone density. He was saying the this was the only specimen like it in the world!

It's so important to recognize little moments like these and be proud to witness them. 

I'm telling you, it's the small things like this that make a difference (pardon the pun lol).

Oh my gosh!...I almost forget to mention the Neanderthal skeletons he was scanning not long ago from France. He said it was a whole family that had been other Neanderthals!!!
Apparently you can tell how a bone is broken by the way it fractures. That's one way they could tell they had been eaten. Also, he said it couldn't have been by an animal because the animal would have gnawed away at the bones, and they didn't see that in this case. Almost make you wanna be an architect, huh? :)

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