Wednesday, June 06, 2018 by Vicki Batts
The United States Geological Survey (USGS) took to Twitter recently to warn Hawaiian residents against roasting marshmallows over active volcanoes. As the island nation’s Kilauea volcano continues its eruptions with devastating intensity, one might wonder: Who in their right mind would even think about cooking over an active volcano vent? Officials have been issuing evacuation orders left and right, while USGS has been providing updates via Twitter about the molten lava and ash clouds spewing from Kilauea.
As Express reports, time is of the essence for people on Hawaii’s Big Island; authorities recently had to expand the evacuation area, as a 4.5 magnitude earthquake just added to the volcanic devastation. Reports say that cracks left by the earthquake were spewing lava near new home developments. Local law enforcement officers have had to go door-to-door, trying to convince residents to leave their homes before the flows of lava leave them with no way out.
Some 2,500 people have been evacuated, and at least 75 homes destroyed. There are miles of active fissures and vents; USGS reportedly posted footage of “eerie blue flames” coming from cracks in the earth.
Many Twitter users have been asking USGS questions about the volcano and what’s coming out of it, but one person had a different sort of question. The tweet read, “Is it safe to roast marshmallows over volcanic vents? Assuming you had a long enough stick, that is? Or would the resulting marshmallows be poisonous?”
Is it really the right time to be thinking about roasting marshmallows?
— Jay Furr (@jayfurr) May 29, 2018
Yes, folks: This is real life. But you have to hand it to USGS for actually responding to the question:
“Erm…we’re going to have to say no, that’s not safe. (Please don’t try!),” the agency replied. Their response illustrated further that in addition to tasting terribly bad, if the marshmallows came into contact with sulfuric acid (found in the vog, or volcanic smog, emitted from volcanoes), there would be a “pretty spectacular reaction.”
Erm…we're going to have to say no, that's not safe. (Please don't try!) If the vent is emitting a lot of SO2 or H2S, they would taste BAD. And if you add sulfuric acid (in vog, for example) to sugar, you get a pretty spectacular reaction.
— USGS Volcanoes🌋 (@USGSVolcanoes) May 29, 2018
As Home Science explains in a very cool YouTube video, sugar is “attacked” by the acid, leaving behind carbon, water vapor and sulfur dioxide gas. The end result is not something you’d want to eat.
Subjecting a marshmallow to a sulfuric acid bath may make for a great science demonstration, but trying to roast one over an active volcano, not so much. After all, you might die. Was Mr. Furr’s question meant in jest? The world may never know.
With all the stupid things people do these days for social media points and shocking selfies, however, it wouldn’t really be that surprising if someone did try to roast marshmallows over an active volcano vent. How could they possibly miss that photo op? To our selfie-obsessed culture, it seems the “perfect” photo is worth dying for — or at the very least, killing for.
Recall when a group of purported “animal lovers” killed a rare dolphin — because they were too busy taking pictures of themselves holding it to remember that dolphins need water to survive. The dolphin suffocated after being left out in the sand for too long.
Indeed, it seems there is nothing that people won’t do these days for a few Facebook likes or extra brownie points from the loony Left-wing cult. One woman just got slammed for shamelessly exploiting her three-year old “gay” godson on Twitter.
And then there’s David Hogg and his mindless followers, who just got laughed out of a Publix grocery store for their ridiculous “protest,” which looked more like a group of adult children having temper tantrums.
On second thought, maybe having a campfire session next to an active volcano isn’t such a bad idea after all. Keep up with the latest acts of idiocy at Stupid.news.
Sources for this article include: