diamond geezer

 Tuesday, July 29, 2003

so, which one are you?

I reckon that elementary science has a lot to teach us about human relationships. Here then is my new theory of chemical attraction. Maybe one day it'll replace astrology. Have a read below and see which element (or group of elements) you think you most resemble.

Common and extremely lightweight, with a very thin shell. Flits from relationship to relationship, combining with virtually anything. Doesn't really fit into any set group.

Alkali metals 
Unstable, volatile and liable to explode at the slightest provocation. Should be kept at arm's length. Very soft (easily squashed) with little material strength. Easily tarnished, easily dissolved. (e.g. lithium, sodium, potassium)

Alkaline earth metals 
Very reactive and must be stored carefully to prevent sparks flying. Dominant in character when coupled with any weak elements. Forms permanent relationships, never single. (e.g. magnesium, calcium)

Transition metals 
Always solid and reliable, forms a very strong bond. Hard, tough and dense. May tarnish when exposed. Malleable, that is, can be bent. Easily hammered. (e.g. iron, copper, silver, gold)

Rare earth metals 
Rarely occurs in nature and may be dangerously radioactive. Relationships often decay rapidly. Difficult to extract and separate from the surrounding environment. (e.g. uranium, plutonium)

Strong, resilient and durable. Good conductor of warmth and electrical energy. Always hard and firm. Has a very high melting point and boiling point. (e.g. aluminium, tin, lead)

Displays characteristics of both metals and non-metals - may swing either way. Versatile material for a multiplicity of uses. (e.g. silicon, arsenic)

Generally dull in appearance and rather colourless. Tends to be brittle, rarely hard enough for any activity where force is required. Melts at low temperatures. (e.g. carbon, oxygen, sulphur)

Over-reactive and particularly poisonous. Toxic even in small doses. Colourful in character and gets darker the further down you go. (e.g. chlorine, iodine)

Noble gases 
Unreactive, with no wish to bond to anything. Exists naturally as a single particle. Very stable, perhaps too much so. Rarely ever melts or boils. Never found down to earth, only up in the clouds. (e.g. helium, neon, xenon)

How about me then? You might think that, as a diamond geezer, I'd be carbon (6, non-metal). No way. I'm definitely krypton (54, noble gas) instead. No superman, but pretty inert. And last time I tried establishing a long-term bonding I made the mistake of trying to combine with potassium (19, alkali metal). Never again. Think I'd be better off associating with some nice stable aluminium (13, metal) next time. Assuming I ever react again.

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