AP – More than a dozen people, including four children, are being watched for symptoms of mercury poisoning after they were exposed in the north-central Iowa town of Armstrong. Emmet County emergency manager Terry Reekers said Tuesday that the mercury exposure happened after a construction worker remodeling a house found a plastic bottle with about 40 pounds of liquid mercury in the basement on Friday. The worker took the mercury to a bar to show friends. Someone at the bar dropped the bottle and spilled nearly half of the mercury. About 10 to 12 people were exposed to it when the owner tried to clean up the spill with a vacuum cleaner and broom. Reekers said that after leaving the bar, the worker took the remaining mercury back to the house and hid the bottle in a sandbox where four children under the age of 10 later found it. One of them stuck his fingers into the mercury and put the fingers in his mouth. About 25 pounds of mercury was found in the sandbox.
I can totally get behind finding some liquid mercury and bringing it into a bar to show your buddies. I have absolutely no qualms with that part of the story whatsoever. That’s just what you do when you find cool shit . It doesn’t matter if it’s liquid mercury, a nudie magazine, a loaded gun, whatever. You show it off, you play around with it, you drop it on the floor and risk contaminating and/or killing everyone you know and love. That’s fine. But freaking out after the fact and hiding something that awesome and that valuable in a children’s sandbox? What a fucking idiot. Of course those nosy little bastards are going to find it and smear it all over their face and try to eat it. That’s what little kids do. They’re disgusting. They’re wasteful. Those 4 fucking kids probably tore through half that bottle of mercury like I tear through a plate of chicken on wing night. Probably going to have burning silver chemical shit runs for the next week and a half.
The lesson here, as always, is never trust little kids with anything because they will totally ruin the fun of being an adult.