Okay, yes, it's not October 31st yet. But listen: I've got a lot of reasons why we're starting our celebrations now.

  1. A lot of people were out celebrating Halloween over the weekend;
  2. It's my favorite holiday;
  3. I've got notepads full of links that don't really group up into convenient themes;
  4. You all deserve some treats

So let's fill up those bags!

Your doorstop could be worth thousands

A Michigan man recently learned that this 22-pound rock he used for decades as a doorstop on his farm was in fact a meteorite worth over $100,000.

Imagine learning that the humble chunk of metallic-looking rock you got along with the farm you purchased is actually from space and worth a lot of money! This meteorite is especially awesome because the original owner saw it fall and pulled it out of the hole it made while it was still warm.

Pay attention to your doorstop rocks, people. You never know when that nondescript lump is actually super valuable. But even it isn't worth cash money, just remember that every single rock has a story to tell.

Speaking of stories...

It starts, unsurprisingly, with a rock. Rocks are witnesses to the ‘crime’ of Earth history. Geologists are the detectives, trying to tease clues out of the rocks to try and work out what happened, when, and why.

Chris unravels the remarkable story of a humble little bit of stone in this gripping post. If you've ever wanted to know how geologists piece together epic earth science tales from a fragment of stone most people wouldn't look twice at, this is the post you should read today.

Yet another humble little rock has a remarkable story (this one's out of this world!)...

In 1996, scientists discovered what may be the strangest stone ever found, in an equally strange section of the Sahara desert that's littered with unique yellow glass. Nicknamed the Hypatia stone, the relic was later found to be extraterrestrial in origin, but was unlike any known kind of meteorite or comet. A new study has deepened the mystery even further, finding that Hypatia could predate the formation of the Solar System, or have interstellar origins.

Can you imagine? You start looking at a little yellowish-black rock, peg it for a meteorite (exciting!), start delving further, and discover it's not only out of this world, but out of this freaking solar system? This is the kind of thing scientists live for but rarely get to experience in their careers. Also, it's named for one of the most interesting women in the history of the world, so there's all the more reason to love it.

Here's another good article about the stone. Ooo, and another. You know one wasn't enough!

And from the this is the best job ever archives:

Blasting lava with an air cannon may not have been the best way to re-create a volcanic eruption, but Erika Rader and her colleagues persevered.

The scientists were attempting to make volcanic “spatter bombs,” or blobs of lava that sometimes get launched during moderately explosive eruptions. Rader and her colleagues wanted to create spatter bombs because, as she noted, they’re “a difficult thing to study in nature while they’re being produced” at the explosive center of a volcanic eruption.

Spatter bombs can be found around long-dead volcanoes on Earth as well as around volcanoes across the solar system. These researchers can’t zip through space or time, so they resigned themselves to creating spatter bombs all on their own—using leaf blowers, air cannons, and, finally, a shovel.

Is your job like this? You are so lucky. The rest of us can only dream that we'd get to hang out at work all day making our own volcanic eruptions for science! And it turns out that making your own spatter bombs creates a wealth of useful data. Folks who were enthralled by the Kilauea eruption should not miss this article.

And with that, our bags are full. Don't eat all your loot at once!