Dusting Off: Digging a Hole to China

There comes a humbling moment in every boy’s life when he realizes that digging a hole to China is impossible.

Previous attempts at burrowing a Sino-antipodean tunnel had been foiled — not by his inability to procure a plastic shovel capable of withstanding earth’s 9,800-degree inner core, but rather by a late-afternoon thunderstorm or his mother’s maddening penchant for whisking him off the beach just as the tip of a chopstick was being exhumed.

Digging in the wrong direction? 

As Robert Krulwich explains, China’s antipode, or diametrical opposite, is in fact 150 miles north of Buenos Aires. If you dug a hole from any point in the contiguous 48 states, you’d end up in the South Pacific Ocean somewhere. Sadly, only four percent of earthly antipodes are land-to-land.

Then again, if we all keep digging, we might one day meet in the middle…

—C.B.S.

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