Half a Giraffe

You’re giving a announcement to the press about a small asteroid that has managed to get through our atmosphere without completely burning up.  The small space rock is named 2022 EB5 and hit above Iceland last Friday causing a boom and a flash of light as it whizzed across the sky.

You haven’t found any evidence of the asteroid actually making it all the way to the ground, but you want to make folks feel secure about how little damage it would have caused.  So you describe the size of the asteroid as small, 10 feet/3 meters across, “half the size of a giraffe”.

What?  I think a lot of people have probably seen a giraffe in a zoo and have a fairly good idea of how big a giraffe is but it’s certainly not the first thing I would think of when trying to tell someone the size of something.  Especially when 10 feet or 3 meters isn’t that hard to imagine.  But a giraffe…. actually HALF a giraffe?

Isn’t half a giraffe the same as a baby elephant?  Or six dolphins?  Are we picking on animals?  Should we say the asteroid is the size of a Volkswagen Beetle?  And even if we stay with giraffes are we talking half a male giraffe, a female giraffe, a dwarf giraffe?  Are we talking head to halfway through the torso or halfway through the torso to the feet?

Possibilities are endless.

What do you think is a measure of size that the world is missing out on?

59 thoughts on “Half a Giraffe”

  1. A 20-foot giraffe would be a frighteningly large giraffe.
    If you want to reassure people, you should always use puppies as your standard unit. Of course, puppies can vary, so we need a SPU, a standard puppy unit. Nothing you can describe is scary if you envision it in puppies.

    Liked by 5 people

  2. They’re bringing back the Volkswagen Bus (as an electric vehicle), so once again we’ll be able to measure things in terms of VW Buses!

    Liked by 5 people

  3. Attention span. The deluge of information on electronic devices is shortening abilities to focus.
    For example, I’m typing this post, listening to NPR and glancing at an old Mission Impossible TV recording. Oh, and waiting for the toast to pop up. AND The Birds are circling, demanding millet treat. Some might call that multi-tasking day-to-day activity. I’m going to read a book now.

    Liked by 5 people

        1. Maybe we need to build a super collector like they have a CERN to try to capture them?


  4. The first written tour guide narrative for the S/S Wm. A. Irvin cited each of the links in the stern anchor chain weighed ‘x’ number of gallons of milk. I thought that was a pretty silly. I asked if there was a conversion factor for cheese.

    Liked by 6 people

  5. I was part of a discussion recently on measuring land unit. We had acres, rods, chains, and links. “Rods” are 16’6″, chains are 66′, links are 7.9″. When I was working at the Farm Service agency, we measured fields in chains. I had a wheel that measured that way, but I also had a metal roll that was a ‘chain’. And a pocket of stakes so I could mark out 10 chains. That whole thing was a PITA. The chain was marked in links.

    Dad has a ‘rod’ wheel out in the shop. I only saw him use it once. As it’s 8′ across, it’s rather cumbersome. But the math doesn’t come out right on that… it must be 1.5 rods or something… hmmm…. now I’ll have to go investigate that. Maybe it’s like ‘One revolution = 4 Joe Steps’

    Then there’s also ‘hundredweights’ for milk. I doubt I could think of anything as good as what y’all have already come up with today!

    Liked by 4 people

        1. For most of what I measure, I don’t need exact units. For measuring distance, “yonder ways” will do nicely for shorter distances.

          Liked by 4 people

    1. Passed in the Senate, hasn’t passed in the House yet. Assuming it passes, we would still have time changes in fall 2022 and spring 2023. November 2023 would be the first not-falling-back fall.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Back when I was working in advertising and more so as a freelancer, on of the most fun things I got to do was to participate in idea generating sessions, where a select group would get together and generate names for products or companies, or concepts or whatever. This is sort of what it was like.

        Liked by 5 people

  6. fun to pop in periodically
    i thought i threw in a post earlier but it was a lost effort
    i think i was done but then the delivery i was on interrupted and i failed to hit send and it goes away

    i’ll keep trying

    some of my favorite posts are only seen by me

    maybe that how it should be

    Liked by 2 people

  7. The header photo reminds me of Steve Harvey talking about how rich Michael Jackson was – he talked about the super rich having giraffe money. “Who got giraffe money? I mean, who do you even call to buy a giraffe?”

    Liked by 1 person

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