I had just bought Brutal Legend, and I was loving every second of it. If people tell you that game wasn’t worth playing, do not listen to them. They do not see epic van murals every time they close their eyes; they do not understand awesomeness; they are terminally deficient in vitamin rock. It’s not perfect, but it is a fantastic experience, and you should be ashamed of yourself if you let a few less than stellar reviews stop you from playing 1980s High School Burnout: The Video Game.
But I digress.
I had just gotten a new super move — one that let me play a guitar solo to bring a flaming zeppelin down on my enemies — but I hadn’t used it yet. I’m no philistine: I don’t cough at the opera, I don’t wear white after Labor Day, and I don’t play my bitchin’ murderous magical guitar solos anywhere but on a lightning-ravaged mountaintop. After driving to the top of the largest, spikiest, most appropriately metal peak I could find, I got out of my hot rod and played the solo. As advertised, a giant burning zeppelin came screeching out of the sky and slammed into the ground, setting the world aflame. The screen inverted from the impact. Random colors spewed out in every direction. The whole image shook and swayed and went to static, then did that old school “powering down” blip. Everything went black. It was perfect.
I thought it was all part of the special effects for the super move.
It was not.
My TV, an old CRT model, had exploded right at the climax of the zeppelin crash. I had to drop $500 on an entirely new television that day, all because of one use of one super move in a single video game — and I wasn’t even mad about it. The timing was just too perfect. That appliance could’ve gone out while watching Judge Judy disapprove of somebody’s baby daddy, but no: It was the Viking funeral of televisions — it died showing me a flaming, screaming blimp explosion while electric guitars wailed on a mountain top. I hope I die half as metal.
Blood Falls, a Natural Time Capsule Containing a Unique Ecosystem
This five-story, blood-red “waterfall” pours ever so slowly out of the Taylor Glacier in Antarctica’s McMurdo Dry Valley. Geologists first discovered the frozen waterfall in 1911, and believed the red color came from algae. Its true nature turned out to be more spectacular.
Roughly two million years ago, a small body of water containing an ancient community of microbes was sealed beneath the surface of the Taylor Glacier. Trapped below a thick layer of ice, the microbes have remained isolated inside a natural time capsule, in a place with no light, oxygen, or heat.
The trapped lake has very high salinity and is rich in iron, which gives the seepage its red color. A fissure in the glacier allows the microbial subglacial lake to flow out, forming the falls without contaminating the ecosystem within.
More photos of Blood Falls can be seen on Atlas Obscura