Animal, Mineral, Debatable

| Boston, MA, USA | Math & Science

(The store I worked at sells rock and mineral specimens, so it’s quite common that customers don’t know much about what they are buying. Luckily, I have a geology background, so I can explain in detail what things are.)

Customer: *points up at a piece* “What is that?”

Me: “It’s a chrysanthemum stone.”

Customer: “Well, what is that?”

Me: “It’s strontium sulfate that forms on top of a black limestone.”

Customer: “But what IS that?”

Me: “Strontium sulfate is Celestite. This is just a different form of it, but deposited on a limestone; it looks like a flower.”

Customer: “But what is THAT though? It’s not a fossil of a flower, is it?”

Me: “No, it’s a mineral on top of a limestone. Limestones are a fine-grained sedimentary rock. The crystallization just makes it looks like a flower.”

Customer: “So it’s a rock on top of another rock?”

Me: “Not technically, but sort of…I don’t know how to explain it simpler than that.”

Customer: “So, it’s two rocks in one! I’ll take it.”

Me: “Okay, great. I’ll assume you want an info card on it?”

Customer: “Nah, it’s just a rock on a rock. That’s all I need to know!”