How to become a FossilA short guide to self-preservation.

How to become a FossilA short guide to self-preservation.

  • Words Robert Ito
  • Photograph Pierrot

So you want to become a fossil, perhaps in the hopes that some anthropologist, years on, will come upon your mineralized remains. Setting the specific whys aside, do any of us have a say in who gets to be preserved in the geologic record? 

Unfortunately for individuals interested in this particular strain of immortality, becoming a fossil isn’t easy. As estimated by Bill Bryson in A Short History of Nearly Everything, of the trillions of creatures that have shuffled and slithered and swum across our planet since the dawn of time, less than one-tenth of 1% have had the good dumb luck to become fossils. The vast majority of animals and plants live, die and decompose leaving nary a trace. 

But there are a few ways to increase one’s chances. You can try to work things so that your bod...

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