This past weekend Mark, the kids and I visited the Houston Museum of Natural Science (www.HMNS.org.) Some exhibits change– right now they are featuring Ancient Egypt, so I had to go get pumped up for the revisions that are coming my way soon.
The Hall of Gems & Minerals is always there and I always go visit. This aquamarine reminds me of Superman’s Fortress of Solitude, which is a cool place for a mental vacation when surrounded by hordes of people and it’s 110 degrees outside.
Most of the pictures I took with my iPhone suck, but they are better than the pictures that never got taken because we never remembered the camera.
Gem, Mineral, or Just A Rock? This handy chart tells you how a ROCK is different from a MINERAL. (Disclaimer: I didn’t go to snopes.com to vet this website. These may be vicious lies perpetrated by the opposition.)
So what are GEMS? I think they are minerals with different chemicals added. Maybe. You decide:
“For example, the mineral Corundum, which is Aluminium Oxide, is colourless in its pure form, whereas if it contains Chromium it becomes the rich red of Ruby, if it contains Titanium it becomes the intense blue of Sapphire. Aquamarine and Emerald are different colours of the mineral Beryl, which can also be orange, yellow and green.” (Source: http://www.gemrock.net/content.asp?page=gemstones)
I’ll wait while you read it several more times to fully absorb the meaning.
So what about essential vitamins and minerals– the kind that we eat? Is my Special K enriched to include the recommended daily dose of diamonds? Or is it simply full of plain ole Potassium?
(I’ve just spent a couple hours watching some videos on what we need to eat/don’t eat and I’m totally confused.)
Anyway…. There were no rocks from Louisiana exhibited, but there was this prehistoric bug that looks like it’s double 1st cousins with some swamp roaches I’ve seen. This bugger was eye level with me: