Wednesday, 6 April 2016

The quest for the Holy relic of archaeology: conclusion

Vilhelm Pedersen (1820 - 1859), Illustration for Hans
Christian Andersen's The Empereror's New clothes

"The Emperor's New Clothes" (Danish: Kejserens nye Klæder) is a short tale by Hans Christian Andersen about two weavers who promise an emperor a new suit of clothes that is invisible to those who are unfit for their positions, stupid, or incompetent. When the Emperor parades before his subjects in his new clothes, no one dares to say that they don't see any suit of clothes until a child cries out, "But he isn't wearing anything at all!" Wikipedia


It was Raimund Karl's paper: Every sherd is sacred: Compulsive Hoarding in Archaeology which inspired this series. Ray demonstrated that it was not the object, per se, which was sacred, but the fact of its excavation. The title also referred to a neurosis and these two things in combination acted like catnip to me on account of my interest in Jung. It was fairly obvious that it was the archaeology site which was sacred but the identification of the exact nature of this numinosity took a little extra work. Ray and I have discussed many things over the years and it was he who asked me to contribute an entry for Celtic coinage in John Koch (ed), Celtic Culture: A Historical Encyclopedia, ABC-CLIO, Santa Barbara, 2006, 5 Volumes. Unlike a number of archaeologists who restrict themselves in all that they do to the work of their immediate academic peers within archaeology, Ray casts his net much wider, not just in the interdisciplinary, but in the thoughts of those who are not academics. He says that viewpoints different from his own interest him. In matters of Celtic culture, he thus joins other greats such as Vincent Megaw and the late Martyn Jope. A genuine interest knows no boundaries. Ray also understands that the goal of research is not to get neat, potted, answers, but to get more questions.

So what is it about an archaeological site which can create both numinosity and neuroses? There has to be something within the unconscious for this to happen, as it is within the unconscious that we find both the collective religious archetypes and the repressed parts of the individual consciousness that can bring about neuroses.

The ghettoizing of archaeology brings about its shadow in the form of the more outrageous examples of Fringe Archaeology (the use of the term pseudoarchaeology is illiterate).
"Carl Jung stated the shadow to be the unknown dark side of the personality. According to Jung, the shadow, in being instinctive and irrational, is prone to psychological projection, in which a perceived personal inferiority is recognised as a perceived moral deficiency in someone else. Jung writes that if these projections remain hidden, "The projection-making factor (the Shadow archetype) then has a free hand and can realize its object--if it has one--or bring about some other situation characteristic of its power."  These projections insulate and harm individuals by acting as a constantly thickening veil of illusion between the ego and the real world." Wikipedia excerpt. (same as shadow link).
In this case, the manifestation of the shadow becomes part of the collective consciousness and thus a societal aberration. But what of those who most express this shadow? We might be able to assign a motive of using the phenomenon for profit  or fame in some, but that did not hold up very well in the case of Barry Fell, and we could see the presence of a previous psychological trauma caused by his betting on the losing theoretical horse (diffusion versus plate tectonics). This was the sort of mistake that can be very valuable at the start of one's career, but a tragedy at its close if it has never before been realized. Such errors after such a cognition are water off a duck's back because all theories are subject to replacement and that is what drives science forward.

While the collective consciousness of archaeologists can explain some manifestations of psychological hoarding there has to be, first, examples of it being an individual unconscious phenomenon for it later to be projected into the collective consciousness realm. We find this in the repressed idea that archaeological context is only very occasionally a workable method to reveal hidden meaning and thus new information that is not obviously apparent. So the objects lacking this have to be retained for the "resurrected hero" of the future who will return to save his society. These, then are the Holy relics imbibed with the mana of such a hero. This phenomenon is sometimes expressed in archaeology with phrases such as "Clearly, more research is required" at the end of a paper. I might even consider using that phrase as a mantra to be repeated over an over if I wanted such a person to stimulate that part of the personal unconscious where it hides.

One of the most important archaeological discoveries made in Britain was the Ferrybridge chariot burial, but its importance was not the site, but its interpretation which was  a manifestation of the returning hero archetype as had been applied in the Medieval period both to Arthur and to Charlemagne. The brooch which the skeleton was wearing was a fully developed involute brooch which places its manufacture to the very end of its use. This would mean about 50 BC. However, Ian Stead has said that it might have been still used after that period which brings it into the period of the "later" remains at the periphery of the burial. I heard from one of the excavators that the C14 results within the burial were contaminated and this was expressed by triple peaks. It had seemed like these bones had been "archived" and then reused. Instead of tossing the results out as one might do for a contaminated dna sample, averages were taken which the reduced the age of the site somewhat, but not nearly enough to explain the brooch by which Ian Stead had rejected its dating. Then why was this done? It was the power of that archetype: the need to believe. This is exactly why Barry Fell could throw away all of his experience as a scientist.

The recommendation by Tannis Getty,  a reader of this series of Malcolm Gladwell's Blink enabled me to understand what lay behind a lot of the intuitions of my life, but what first got me after I read a sample before purchasing it and reading it in full was his example of a modern forgery. It reminded me of another object of which I am not the only person to be suspicious about. Now I have not seen it "in the flesh" but its immediate impression was that it is a fake and the photographic enlargements have not lessened that impression. Treat this as a hypothesis.

It is the gold "penny" of Coenwulf in the British Museum. When I first saw its photograph my exact and immediate thought was "Ooh! Bulgarian". It seemed to me to be the work of an apprentice or a follower of Slavey Petrov. Here is a "Roman" example of an actual Slavey reproduction (his goes by his first name). some of his apprentices have been marketing their products as real. My wife an I contributed a few questions for an interview with Slavey when he was still living in Bulgaria conducted by the founder of VCoins. Sadly, the resulting interview is not on the web any more although there is at least one other. Looking at it more closely and reading the circumstances of its find, I became even more sceptical.

I once wrote a report for a British metal detectorist who wished to sell a very rare Celtic gold stater. His customer was worried that it might be accused of being one of the specimens from a hoard found not many miles away. I was able to eliminate his worries from its photograph. Gold is the most malleable of metals and is very soft. While this stater was now here near the approximate 22 carat of the Coenwulf coin, It was fairly early and its gold content was perhaps as much as 14 carat. I explained that its very slightly blurry appearance was typical of a single find and that the hoard examples were much crisper.

You can spot a gold coin that had  been embedded in hoard right away by its crispness. Gold does not wear like other metals, instead of losing a lot of material, the gold molecules spread themselves out over the surface like butter. A coin that looks like it has a lot of wear can often be of surprisingly good weight for the type. When a high carat gold coin sits in the ground tiny particles of earth act like little hammers on every part of the coin, including right inside small details and inscriptions. This is essentially how gold leaf is made: using a soft mallet and beating the gold until it is just thin enough to stay together. It does not take much abrasion to "wear" gold. For years in the jewellery business, I used to tell women to remove their rings if they were filing papers at work all day, because paper "wears" gold very easily and the gold on the top of the points holding a stone is always being pushed to the edges and eventually the point will break and the stone could be lost. the effect of gold spreading reminds me of what George Bernard Shaw said about meeting Isadora Duncan: "She looked as if she had a face made of sugar and someone had licked it". I would love to hear some explanation as to how a high cart gold coin can sit on its own, in earth, or even leaf mold or peat for hundreds of years and still look like that. Worms, insects and bigger animals, ground disturbances, pressure from above freezing and thawing, all create movement of particles on the surface.

One of the scams used by forgers is to leave fakes of a unique coin where one of them might be found thus legitimizing the fake. Once that happens, all the rest can be dug up so as not to make them suddenly common! Perhaps many years later, a second example is "found" and is from the very same dies as the "genuine" excavated example. Sometimes, genuine, but illicitly excavated objects are reported to have been found in a place where the find would be legal. This happens very often.

Gold of about, but not exactly, 22 carat is very easy to find. It exists in much modern Indian jewellery. British hallmarked 22 carat is exact, though. The find also follows the characteristics of the presentation of a good fake: it must be very similar in style to what has been already found, but not exactly the same (British Museum link, study what is shown there); it must establish some important piece of new knowledge. After that, wishful thinking can take over and you get the Barry Fell effect. Everyone wants it to be real.

Incidentally,  another identification of the Coenwulf coin as a fake uses a completely different set of criteria to back up that first "Blink"!


Tomorrow, something new. I have not made up my mind about what, though.


John's Coydog Community page

66 comments:

  1. My goodness, you made me famous by naming me in your blog. Thank you, John.

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  2. I'm not sure that would make you famous. I'm only famous for being the owner of Tristan. People have stopped me on the street, at parks and on the bus only to ask if they can take a photo of him.

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  3. Watch the first episode of the Ranch, thanks for the suggestion. It is well write, especially the part about the boots.

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    1. Isn't Sam Elliot the epitome of the ranch patriarch? I have met such people.

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  4. He reminded my of another patriarch my father because they have issues with children who want to follow their dreams. He did not understand why I wanted to study archeaology and anthrology. Thank goodness my mom recognized my desire to explore the world in a different way. She told me one should have the chance to do something they want to do once in their life.
    The area my father's farm was located in was called the Palliser Triangle which receives up to 9 to 10 inches of rain a year. This is determined to be semi-desert. The only way people could farm there was because the CPR developed the Eastern Irrigation District or EID. They had received mass blocks of land from the federal government to build the railway across Canada. So encourage
    Immigrates to come to Canada their built the EID and this is. the reason my father's family came to Canada in1915.
    What you described to me about the dry land scrape is part of the triangle. When travelling to Harve, Montana I have witnessed the grass moving like waves on the ocean. It iis beautiful.

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    1. Where about was the farm located? I might know the area. The ranch houses I mentioned had all been abandoned when the place turned into a dustbowl and the Great Depression started.

      I actually knew one of the (later) pioneers. Jack Rea was the blacksmith/wainwright at Cochrane and much later worked for Glenbow museum where I also worked for a while. I knew and worked with six of the people in this photograph:

      http://tinyurl.com/hjewr6a

      Jack is second on the left standing right in front of the notice board. He told me about wheat being the first thing grown here and how hard that was to get it started. When I arrived a couple of years after that photo, Jack was 71. Once, he had changed the iron tire on a wagon-wheel and needed some help replacing the old wheel with the "new" one. There were three of us holding up one corner of the wagon (with much difficulty!). Jack, with his left hand lifted the opposite corner, and with his right hand replaced the wheel. He had a house in Banff where he made the garden fence entirely out of horse-shoes. Once, when building a log cabin in the mountains, a bear suddenly appeared coming round the corner of the cabin. Jack knocked it out with his axe handle on the bear's snout. When the bear came to, Jack's small dog was barking at it and the bear ran off into the forest at once.

      Incidentally, the man sitting second from the front on the right and not smiling was Lew Burke, the head of the military department. Lew taught me how to describe what I saw and not what I thought I saw, when I started as a cataloguer working for him. We were the only two people in that department. It seemed that there was nothing he didn't know. "We should be able to build another one from your verbal description" he had told me. he had served in the Canadian army as a sergeant-major and was in the Korean War. I acknowledged him in my book. Sitting in front of him is Gordon Gay, the armourer. Behind Lew is Dick Eveliegh who I first worked for. He taught me accessioning. None of the people I have mentioned had been academics.

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  5. I should have retread the comments I sent to you, sorry for the errors. The book Emily Carr won the Governor General award in 1942 is titled Klee Wyck.

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    1. No problem, and thanks for the title.

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  6. The farm was not that far south, it was ten miles north of Brooks, Alberta which took you to the village of Duchess and then you had to travel east of there another five miles towards Rosemary. Google a map of the area. It is half between Duchess and Rosemary along the road that connects them. Off to visit a friend.

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    1. I have been out that way many times, a very interesting area with lots going on. I dare say I have passed that farm at least once. It must have been great living so close to Dinosaur Provincial Park. It's one of my favourite places in Alberta.

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  7. Yes, it was great being that close, we travelled there often . Don't tell anyone I even have a few fossils from the park. A nephew was lucky to work there as a coordinator of fossil recovery. Then he worked at the Utah university during fossil recovery of a site written up in National Geographic. They discovered numerous new triceratops fossils. He has moved on to work at the Denver Natural History Museum. John, he is like you getting the opportunity to study what you most enjoy.
    If you drove along the road that went from Bassano to the park you were very close to where I lived.
    I loved looking down from the lookout above the before one drove down into the park. It looks so foreign. Have you ever been there after a rain storm? The soil has a lot of bentonite mixed in it, after is rains the bentonite expanses and becomes extremely slippery. Makes for interesting walking!

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    1. I found a bit of a tooth and a lot of dinosaur sinew in one of those small patches of rubble just outside of the park (on the other side of the road). I'm sure I've been on that road. I took this panorama shot from the lookout you mention.

      http://tinyurl.com/d8npu4o

      I think they also used a nearby scene in the movie Quest for Fire. I've never been there after a storm, but I've been through the some very impressive storms in the general area.

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  8. John, I tried to open tinyurl and I wasn't able to do so. Sometimes I can be technically challenged. I will try again later. It is a small world when you find people who enjoy similar interests.
    When I worked on the Suffield Military reserve the storm were something to be hold. Nature is a might force until itself and should be respected. There is many a story I can tell you about the Britsh forces who traded on the reserve the same time we were conducting the archaeology survey. One was they could not find their way around because of the enormous spaces and would be come lost. They seemed grateful to us for helping find they way. We often thought God help us if there was a war, would they know where they were going.

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    1. The easiest way to get to it is to Google:

      a sweetgrass offering to the dinosaurs

      It will be the number one result.

      I can imagine that many people from England could easily become agoraphobic in that country! I once went for a few drinks in Calgary with one British infantry officer on leave from Suffield. He seemed quite proud of the fact that in battle, his life expectancy was calculated at 20 minutes. To each their own!

      I knew quite a few military people when I worked at Crown Surplus, Gord had set up his collection as a museum. We did a thing to commemorate Dieppe and I interviewed one of the people who had been captured there. What a total mess that operation was! He ended up in the POW camp The Great Escape film was based on (very loosely). In films, the most authentic equipment is to be seen in Kelley's Heroes of all things. I think Gord loaned his Centurion Tank for one movie. It was in perfect working order and had everything issued for it. The British army delivered his Churchill tank to him. It's too bad he had to sell all that stuff.

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  9. Talking about tanks, they got one of their tanks stuck and they setup a guard camp. We came along mid morning there was not a soul up. So being the rascals we were , we decided to roar up to their camp and slam on the brakes. Well there were soldiers jumping out of tents, they probably thought we were their commanding officers. What shocked looks were on their faces! We had a good laugh and I bet it never happen again. We enjoyed having drinks with them at the mess. What other entertainment could do we out in the wilderness.

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    1. Indeed, it would take 2 1/2 hours to drive to Calgary.

      Did you manage to get to the blog entry with the Dinosaur Park pictures? another way is to use the search box on the blog, but I'm not sure if it shows up on all devices. If it does show up for you just search for sweetgrass.

      I've been transferring files from one of my computers to the other (I thought I had them on both but didn't). One was a novel I wrote that I might do a final edit and rewrite the last chapter and issue it as an ebook. It is set at the end of the Neolithic. I might even include a couple of chapters as blog entries. I wrote it to take a break from writing about the Gundestrup cauldron in 2006. I wrote one ca. two thousand word chapter each day, and then edited it afterwards for five days a week until I finished it. 88,000+ words, 43 chapters, about eight weeks work. The story moves from northern Europe to Sicily and is about contact with a Mediterranean civilization (Canaanites) and is about the primary causes of war. It is called War. It also "reconstructs" the Megalithic religion.

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  10. I will try the search box . You are so kind to me with all your suggestions. Please post the chapters from your novel on your blog. As I have mentioned before you are a man of many talents. I have been busy reading Information about The Sacred and Profane. Goodnight.

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    1. I just finished editing the fist ten chapters. There was one line that had bothered me for long time. I've now fixed it. There was little else to change. It's good to read something so long after writing it -- almost like reading a story by someone else. I think its OK. Perhaps I'll do the ten chapters as a preview. Must find a fairly simple ebook converter and sign up with Amazon to sell. Have a good night.

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  11. PS the reason things may not be working is because I am on my iPad therefore I will give it a try on the computer downstairs tomorrow. Hopefully, it will work.

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    1. I'm not familiar with the iPad. My daughter uses one though.

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  12. SorryI can't sleep. So I have been rereading comments. iPads have their place but I think that computers are far more functional. Yes I did find the Dinosaur blog and the pictiures are stunning.
    This is another one of your talents.
    Teachers often have difficultly sleeping because this is the time of day we do our best thinking about problems.

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    1. Not me, I'm a morning person. Creative early, member of the audience, late. Perhaps I do my best thinking when I'm asleep!

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  13. Lucky you! In the morning I like to have a cup of tea and listen to birds singing as they welcome the new day. I hope a have no typos since I am typing without my glasses on as I lay in bed. Great long distance sight but need reading glasses.

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    1. Ah, yes. Without my reading glasses, I would need increasingly larger print and longer arms.

      I've been thinking about my novel. It is about the clash of societies: a peaceful and spiritual late Neolithic society becomes exposed to the effects of a more advanced but warlike Mediterranean society.

      The situation is paralleled by the the two main characters: a boy and a girl at the threshold of adulthood. So it is a coming of age story for both the society and themselves. Of course, it's all very Jungian, too!

      I originally titled it "War", but I think that title might disappoint people looking for a "blood and guts" story and people looking for something more spiritual or a fantasy about an ancient religion might never even think to be buy it. So now I'm thinking "War in an age of innocence" might be a better title. What do you think?

      I have decided to sell it for $3.99 as an ebook.

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  14. As I remember when choosing a title these things are important:
    1. Short and easy
    2. Memorable
    3. Most important matches the soul of the book
    I hope this is helpfully but you probably already knew this. Talk to you later.

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  15. John, I have been thinking about the book maybe take the advice from Blink and use your gut feeling. It is your book and I know you have a great ideas running around in your head. The title you suggested does seem fine to me but I have not had the opportunity to read the book to see if fits. Are you still going to blog some of the chapters?
    Guests are coming for supper and a games night so I may not be able to response until later in the evening. Have a great evening!

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    1. Just got home. With this warm weather I decided to give Tristan a day out and found a dog park alongside the Elbow at around 30th. It was a good choice for him as we must have met more than a dozen dogs there. The dog parks closer to me usually only have one or two dogs if any. He was also able to go in the river. It was a bit too long a walk for me, though as I have a foot injury and I was limping pretty badly by the time we left for home. I rested up at a friend's shop halfway to going downtown to catch my bus, and he suggested me going back later tonight for the seafood buffet at the casino. So that gives me a couple of hours to recuperate.

      I think I will go with the amended title, and I'm also thinking I will put at least ten chapters as a serial on the blog. It's ideally suited for that because there is a cliffhanger at the end of each chapter. I will have to time it so that the ebook is available at least when I post the last chapter of the sample.

      Have an enjoyable evening!

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  16. I have only tried to write this reply 4 times. The problem with iPads is when you touch different parts of the screen interesting things can happen. I hope you had a delicious supper with your friend. Sorry to hear you have a foot injury, may it heal quickly. Also, glad to know you decided on the title for the book and I look forward to reading the chapters you will be posting on the blog. The games night went well.

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    1. I have similar problems with my Samsung tablet which seems far easier to touch the wrong part of the edge, or accidentally touch some thing on the screen than to do do some things deliberately. Highlighting is especially hit and miss.

      I have planter fasciitis and my heel is swollen, I've had it for about three months, so far but is slowly improving and I bought some sleeves which are bit like an tight ankle sock with the toe end cut off. The trouble is that it improves for a while and then i have to carry something heavy or be on my feet too long and that sets it back again. The good news is that one web site says it is something that often starts in middle age. So being 66 when I first get it must mean I'm good to go to about 132 ;-) I'm hoping it will clear up before the summer. Walking about 45 blocks today with the dog was probably not the best idea, but it does seem a lot better tonight. I will only take one ansaid if the pain gets too much and then not take another for at least a few days. I try to avoid any medication as much as possible, but
      ansaids are particularly nasty. After the casino seafood buffet, I think I might eat very little this weekend!

      After the current series and if one book does not take too much longer to arrive, I'm going to start the T. E. Shaw (Lawrence) series, then I'll start posting the chapters of the novel. At least that's the current plan. As ten chapters would give me two weeks off writing the blog, I might also do that before tackling Shaw and that will give me more time for research. With more than 100 biographies about him, doing anything fresh is quite the challenge, even it were a five year project in the U.K. Doing it as a blog series in Calgary...

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  17. Good morning! My project for day is to continue reading The Power of Myth. Joseph Campbell is brilliant now I understand why Bill gave you the book. One's thinking processes are highly stimulated and engaged
    Why did Bill go off the rails so badly when he had so much going for him? Did he ever find happiness in another relationship?
    I am sorry you never gad the pleasure of seeing him teach because it was like watching a work of art. He did win award for his teaching skills. You did not want to miss one of his classes I remember one class where he blurs out I am Heathcliff which had no connection to the lecture . And another time the lecture was about Call of the Wild and we were discussing some particular passage which contained the words "fair play'. I had mentioned them and did I get in trouble, He was gave me that look of his. His response was there is no such thing as fair play. I remember wanting to argue back but decided to let it go. Do you know what year he was born in? The reason being I think we were about the same age. Our class so appreciated him we had a party for him at the Officers Club at the Currie Military Base Bill seemed so happy that evening, I am right in thinking he was a very strong extrovert.

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    1. Good morning, just finishing my morning coffee and checking my messages. It was not the Power of Myth Bill gave me but The Masks of God series. The Power of Myth was my recommendation as the best Campbell book to start with.

      I'm not sure which incident you are referring to when you say "go off the rails". In my perception, that was in 1999, not when his marriage broke up which was many years earlier (early eighties, I think). I think it was in 96 or 7 when he came over to our house when we lived on Westmount Road and he brought a woman with him, but I never saw her after that and it might just have been a friend. That must have been just before he took his second to last trip to the Far East. Apart from his rather dramatic responses at the time of the breakup of his marriage, he was pretty well the same person before and after. Until 1999 that is. That was when all of his friends were concerned and Tashi was calling for compassion.

      In some sense, he was never entirely on the rails: he had no liking for the bureaucratic side of the U of C, and I got the strong impression that he was not fond of the sort of student who only wanted to get good marks for a well-paying job. Bill only appreciated passion about things and picked his friends accordingly. Perhaps that's what you saw in his teaching, I don't know, as I said, I never saw him teach. When I first knew him, he said he would take his dog Pizzle to his classes. I looked after her as well as his house when he went on vacation the time his marriage broke up.

      Heathcliff? LOL, well that makes sense. Yeah, that was Bill.

      I did not know he lectured about Jack London. I became a fan of his when I was seven and was given Call of the Wild, White Fang and The Scarlet Plague by my aunt. What was his take on London?
      When I was about thirteen, I was with some friends on a raft we had built on the salt-marshes of the tidal part of the River Crouch in Essex when we were hailed by a man on a rather sleek yacht. He asked us if we wanted a real boat and said we could have his old one which was lying in the mud nearby with its mast attached to a small shed a few feet away. It was a very old converted 18 foot clinker-built lifeboat from a ship and in awful condition. I suggested that we fix it up and sail it to Alaska. Fortunately, it was pretty well stuck in the mud and boards and jacks did nothing but sink the boards in the marsh. It was just too heavy.

      Bill must have been born in the early to mid forties, but I don't know the year. I'm guessing '42.

      No! Bill was certainly not an extravert. He was an Introvert like me. I am almost certain that he was an INFP (I'm INFJ). The confusion lies in the fact that we both have extraverted feeling, so come across to people as extraverts. You won't find many extraverts with the strong interest in 16th century magic that Bill had. T. E. Lawrence was either INFJ or INFP (the movie version had him closer to the latter).

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  18. Soory about getting the titles confused. I find this interesting in that I the same as Lawence, I am either a INFJ or INFP. I guess this why the Humanities and social studies are or were my passion. I don't remember a lot about Bill's take on Call of the Wild other then he had the students reading different genre of literature which teachers could expose students to develop their love of literature. He must been a bad day and he was showing his emotions when was annoyed at me. I just happened to be the one to make the comment as part of a conservation. Wrong time and place. When he was making comments like this, one had no choice other than to realize there were things happening in his life that were causing him stress. When I attended university students were there to learn and expand their learning. Things started to change in th 90's were marks where the only thing and students were pressuring profs for perfect marks. What a pity. I can understand his frustration with this attitude. It was happening in schools because parents wanted their children to be honour students in grades one and two. They did not appreciate me in that I did not play this game because children have years and years to learn. Let them explore the world.
    Thank you for answering my questions. Sometimes I just have to know things.


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    1. You can easily find out for sure which type you are. Google humanmetrics.

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  19. I will do. The number of blocks you walked made my poor knees hurt. Bad knees are one of the hazards of being an archaeologist. One just keeps moving.

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  20. After rereading the descriptive information I am both. The j and the p combination are definitely me. They give me the ability to be flexible in my decision making. I was a master of this at work. Sometimes I find it frustrating when others are so ridge in their thinking and are stuck in a rut. This characteristic of flexibility would have served Lawrence well. I guess this is why we are different. Thank God!

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    1. It's really difficult to interpret the tertiary functions, even for oneself, let alone another. Even the general type can be quite a surprise when you take the test. That's why they have them as there are times when we might express different types. The Jungian "shadow" acts like an opposite force to whatever so we all go through different expressions depending on the circumstances.

      I wonder what could be the physical problems from being a theoretical archaeologist? I am not the sort of person to use gyms and exercise machines so I like getting out there and doing stuff. By the end of winter, I need all sorts of exercise and that involves a lot of walking, too. So having a foot injury this time of the year is a nuisance.

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  21. They say walking is probably one of the best things a person can do to keep in shape. I am making up different physical problems for you , I will tell you later. I did take the test at different times and I always come out the same. We had a professional development day at school on this topic and I came out the same. I guess this is what I am.
    Busy making curry for dinner. The dishes are from southern india. Puppoo a form of Dahl a thick lentil dish. meatball curry and pupperdums ( thin wafers fried in hot oil) and rice. Can you smell it from your house?
    Had to go and watch the puppies sot does not burn! Rest your foot!

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  22. Some days this iPad decides what the words should be that I type. I see my puppoo has changed into puppies. How ridiculous!!

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    1. Couldn't find this comment for a moment. I was looking _after_ my next reply.

      I though "puppies" was slang!

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  23. So which, the j or the p?

    The percentages will vary over time and depending on whose test.

    After eating to much at the buffet last night, I thought I would go a little healthier today. For breakfast I tried mixing honey almond granola with Astro Balkan yogurt and then added quite a bit of Last Mountain's Saskatoon berry spread (Walmart), which is phenomenally good. It was all great together. I'm not yet sire what I am going to do about the other meal(s?) today, but it probably won't be fish.

    While writing these messages I have been doing dishes and laundry and comparing You tube (very long) demonstrations of both Vive and Oculus Rift Virtual Reality. My place is no where big enough to think about getting Vive which uses a space you can walk around in but have to install sensors on the walls. It seems that Oculus has far less distortion The sort you see when trying to look at the sky or the ground in Google maps street view. The presenters of the VR are game types, but I more interested in "Virtual Tourist" sort of experience. My game preferences are far removed from shoot em types of games or virtual golf etc. More toward Myst like games. But the new VR should be ideal for getting the feel of places and being able to use real places in fiction without having to go there -- no expenses; no shots; long plane journeys (really bad for my back) and the risk of getting sick or being somewhere when a revolution starts or the place gets swept away by a tsunami. Besides, who would dare look after my dog for me? (He would also probably pine away). I'm not yet sure of where I might take him for his second walk of the day, but it will not involve long distances on foot like yesterday.

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  24. The test I took was the Meyers and Briggs( many times) and it could not decide which of the two I should be because it was to close to determine. But I see both in myself, depending on the situation I can be judgement and at other times flexible.
    Boys and their toys. I remember seeing a sign for a business that sold travel trailers called Boy Toys. I laughed for kilometers my daughter was annoyed at me. So what! Have fun choosing the right system. Why shouldn't you have fun your semi-retired.!
    You have such a great sense of humour. Do you have a lovely English accent to go along with it. Since I do not know the sound of your voice because we only communicate on the Internet. I love British humour shows like Mrs. Brown, Monty Python, Mr. Bean and many others.
    I have finally given up and started texting so I was not sure what LOL meant. I came up with few ideas:
    1. Laugh out loud
    2. Lots of lust
    3. Look out loonie
    I think I figured it out number one. Am I right?
    Take carry when walking the dog!

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    1. Yes, laughing out loud.
      I think I see. So an INF_ with a low percentage on the fourth position. The end position is always the least expressed so it is hard to evaluate at the best of times.

      I became interested in Virtual reality in 1969 when I saw the movie, the Illustrated Man based on three Ray Bradbury stories. The story in question was The Veldt (1951) The earliest concept of immersive virtual reality. Its "descendent" is the Star Trek holodeck. Mainly watching the reactions of the three guys presentin the two versions, I'm going with Oculus Rift (I had tried out a developer's version, thanks to my son in law). It has just been released for sale. The slight effect like looking through a screen-door, I noticed at first but the eyes adjust. I took a screen capture of one of the games as seen through it and then increased the contrast and that got rid of the greyed effect. I also discovered on the oculus site that it does have a contrast adjust. I think the guys were using its out of the box settings. It was clear that the oculus rift fooled the bodily sense perceptions more. I think there is VR Stonehenge and it will be interesting to wander around in it. Hopefully, the original environment is simulated and it was not just including the tourist environment. But first I have to save up and build a good computer to run it!

      I don't think I'm either retired or semi retired and if I am I don't know when that happened. I was last on any company's payroll in 1984, and our business packed up when Carrie's cancer came back in 1999, but I'll be 67 at the end of September. I do seem to be getting busier, though.

      When I was back in England for three weeks in 1999. No one there could figure out where I was from, but I do sound English to some people here. I suppose I never ran across anyone there who had ever heard a Canadian. I suppose I have a transatlantic accent. In England people can get "typecast" by what sort of English accent they have. It is far better if such is ambiguous because then you can accepted by everyone. Quite an alien concept to a Canadian!

      For the very best English sitcom of all time, go to YouTube and search for 2point4 children.

      It was short walk with Tristan. We went to a nearby park. Although sunnier earlier, it was overcast and chilly when we went out. It looked like it was still sunny in north Calgary, though.
      I noticed the first leaves appearing on a couple of large trees and saw a robin for the first time this year (last week I started seeing woodpeckers).

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  25. Both the Star Trek tv show and movies have been part of our family culture viewed over and over. Technology is amazing how they can take the ideas presented from a tv show or movie and make it reality. If there is a Stonehenge version how exciting. I wonder if they will include the information found from the ground penetrating research.
    Eric Harvey who founded the Riveredge Foundation and the Glenbow Museum was heard to say after retiring he was busier working on his hobbies than working as a lawyer. I believe this is so because one is enjoying the bliss of what one wants to do.
    I was once told by an Anthrolopogy prof my accent was mid-American. It is possible
    because my father's family came from that area. They were of German and Russia Germany descent and mix it in with the Welsh and British influences.
    The robins have been singing in our area for the last two weeks and the flowering shrubs are starting to come into blossom in the backyard. Also, the ladybugs are up and about.

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    1. I remember when Eric Harvie came by for a visit, he was about eighty at the time, small and frail. He had quit smoking and we were ordered to hide all the ashtrays! He had purchased a lot of the stuff that was in the military department from The Royal United Services Institute Museum in England. This included the F.M. Visc. Wolseley collection I recatalogued some of that. My favourite thing from the RUSI coll. was a tortoiseshell box that had belonged to Francis Drake and had his coat of arms on it.
      There's a small picture of it here:

      http://www.glenbow.org/collections/museum/military/famous.cfm

      Among the Wolsley coll. was an 18 carat gold presentation casket from the City of London. with the he London coat of arms in enamel and St George and the dragon as a finial. It was quite big. I also really like the cased Collier flintlock revolver that might have been a RUSI item, I don't remember for sure. A forerunner of the Colt and hugely valuable. I think they sold off all of the guns, though. They also had Captain Cook's sword, but when I worked there it was on loan to Australia. Some students came by one day, and one of picked up, off my desk, a fragile and stapled Chinese Export porcelain bowl, Looked at it and put it down. I held my breath and said nothing. It was Captain Cook's punch bowl from the Victory.

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    2. Correction, not the Victory, of course, a model of that was also in the collection and was on my mind. I forget which ship the punch bowl was from. I see it has now been restored! I liked it better with the cracks and staples.

      Delete
    3. Forgot ask. How was the curry?

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  26. The curry was not my best but they didn't care. The puppoo was fine. While in Hawaii we travelled by boat to Captain Cook' s Monument. The land around the marker belongs to Britain. Long ago I had the privilege of knowing a lady who lived in Calgary who was related to Captain Cook. I believe on the 300 anniversary of his death she received a copy of his sword. It was moving to be in the area the event happened. The event occurred because of a misunderstanding between two cultures. All because of a boat. Sometimes leaving a cultural item as it is, has more meaning to me , it represents its ability to survive.



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  27. Receiving that sword must have been a great moment for her!

    I think things are often more interesting when unrestored. It carries its history with it. The Sir Edwin Landseer bronze dog at Devonian Gardens had a shiny bare metal nose from all the children who had rubbed its nose while it was there. Some people might say that such things should not be touched, but sculptures are made to be touched, and besides, the "original patina" would have been artificial anyway! I have not been down there since their restoration. I wonder if it is still there.

    It annoys me when I see people on videos wearing gloves when the handle an ancient coin. When my daughter was young, I took a bunch of mt Coriosolite coins and some aother artifacts to her school for a "show and tell". I was surprised to find, when I got there that two classes had been combined for the occasion and one was a class of deaf kids with teachers signing everything I said for them.

    I passed everything I brought to a kid in a front desk and told them to look atn it and then hand it to the next kid, so everyone could handle something that old. The oldest thing was a Neanderthal hand axe. Well, for weeks after that, kids I did not know greeted me by name as I passed them in the street. It must have left a lasting impression. Nothing had been damaged, by the way.

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  28. It is 4 am and I am wide awake. Foolish me!
    I am in agreement with your opinion on the wearing of " white gloves". In some cases there could be a greater chance that some types of artifacts could be dropped wearing gloves over just having bare hands, for example pottery. My question is this how could metal coinage be damaged by being handled with bare hands.
    At one time I had an interesting collection of artifacts from a rare archaeology site from southern Alberta at the house. They were from a site called Split Rock which is a glacial erratic with pictographs painted in red ocher inside the split. But the best part of the site was a small cave located a short distance from the split rock. Inside were found the remains of a burial and with it
    artifacts from a tool making bundle. There was a beautiful little hammer head, a piece of antler for pressure flaking, small arrow heads, shells from the West Coast ( traded from there not native from Alberta) and many other interesting things.
    If you have ever travelled to Radium Hat Springs on highway three, one drives past a place called Vermilion Hot Springs were there is a large deposit of vermilion or ocher which First Nations people used for their sacred rites. I often wondered is where the ocher came from to do the painting at Split Rock.
    Do you still have the Neanderthal hand axe?

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    1. Good morning.

      The only excuse for wearing white gloves in handling coins would be with modern proof coins where the mirror-like fields will retain a fingerprint at once. Coins are handled and acquire a patina over time. With copper-alloy ancient coins touching the surface could transfer a tiny amount of oil from the skin to the surface. After many such events, this could make the patina a little more glossy (which would be considered desirable).

      That collection you had sounds like a Medicine bundle that was not passed on to a relative of the person buried there. Perhaps they had no such relative or no one was considered honourable enough. The person who found it should have been the one who kept it and he or she should have shown its contents to a select few at a special occasion. That would preserve the real culture of the medicine bundle.

      Yes, I have been to the ochre site (Called the Paint Pots or Kootenay Paint Pots) and wrote about the ochre in:

      The Palaeolithic artist: part 20

      Just Google it.

      The hand axe was French and of very fine workmanship the flaking was very shallow indeed. It was part of our stock when we had seven tables at the Hillhurst/Sunnyside Flea Market and that was where it was sold. Carrie found it was a very calming thing to hold in the hand and sometimes actually used it to help her fall asleep! The story was related to its new owner. That flea market business was our survival during the recession in the mid eighties. It paid for our rent, utilities and groceries and we sold everything from housewares to records and books to collectibles. A funny story: we always were on the look out at Garage sales and auctions for attractive bowls to display small items like Roman coins, Fossil shark's teeth, cigarette silks and so on. People were always wanting to buy the bowls and we kept refusing yo sell them. Once, I took some cigarette silks from a glass bowl and put them in a plain ancient Egyptian alabaster bowl. No one asked to buy that bowl!

      One of our customers was the owner of a small oil company and used to spend $200 at our table every week. It was his Sunday routine. The most we made on any day was about $1,200. I had bought a collection of German beer steins very cheaply from a man who was getting a divorce and was anxious that his ex-wife would get very little! I had priced them to sell and they sold for about $900. They were selling as fast as I could unwrap them and were pretty well all gone within fifteen minutes of opening that day.

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    2. I should add that the secret of our success was to always many new items every week and to sell them at a very reasonable price. Most people try to get as much as they can for everything and thus unpack the same old things every week. People generally buy very little from them. The vast majority f our sales were of newly acquired items. We would go to a large number of garage sales and auctions and hit the most promising garage sales early. If we saw that they were asking too much, we would leave at once and go the next one. Most times we would start the weekend with only about $50 -$100 capital to spend. Our monthly expenses at that time was about $1,200. We were never late with the rent money, and unlike many people at the time did not survive on welfare. Eventually the business expanded and when we were making far more from graphic, writing, and database work, we stopped the flea market business.

      Delete
  29. I just lost everything I wrote. I will have to do it again later. Damn!!

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    1. It happens. It happened to me with the entire catalogue, in my book of Series X. But the first prize must go to T. E. Lawrence who lost the entire first manuscript for The Seven Pillar of Wisdom. The second writing is always better!

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  30. There are times for white gloves and times for not using them. You are right about using the white gloves with coins.
    Yes, it was a Medicine Bundle. The artifacts were beautifully crafted and small in scale to be used for fine workmanship, also found with the bundle were small white shells (which are found only on the West Coast) . The site is located on top of a hill with a wonderful view. It would have been a fitting resting place for this special individual. The pictographs are faded making them difficult to view.
    Do you still have the Neanderthal axe?
    New research has been released about the reasons why Neanderthals disappeared. Interesting enough it shows that it may have been caused by a volcanic eruption that occurred in Italy around 40,000 years ago. The ash covered the landscape distroying the food supply of the animals thus also for them. But to me the most important discoveries are the findings about Neanderthal genetic markers within some modern human genetic materials because of cross breeding.
    I have always purchased items at Flea Markets but never worked on the other side of the table. It sounds like you developed a loyal customer base because of the quality and types of items you had for sale. I suspect your wife and you were fiendly and kind to your customers.
    The 80's were hard on so many people. I guess I was lucky in that I did not too many worries and I was attending university and had the good fortune to have Bill as prof.

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  31. As I said, the axe was sold. I was missing a small part of the tip and would have been very valuable indeed had it been intact. I think its workmanship made up for that, though.

    Interesting about the volcanic ash. Do you remember the ash from Mt. St. Helen's that landed in Calgary? Not only would the grazing animals have vanished, but the inhalation of enough ash could have been fatal to many. Essentially, it is ground glass. Were the supervolcano at Yellowstone Park to blow, the amount of ash anding on Calgary is estimated at about 30mm:

    http://sites.agu.org/newsroom/files/2014/08/yellowstone-ash-1.jpg

    This would depend on the exact state of the high altitude winds at the time. I would guess that it could be somewhere between 20 and 50mm. computer models of such things can never be precise. When I was drawing worst-case scenario emergency evacuation maps for the Bow and North Saskatechewan River systems for the communities emergency preparedness workers, I would flood a building even if the computer model said the flood would just miss it. such models can be quite a distance off, it depends on the damning caused by material being brought downstream and that is impossible to predict. people, however, can take such maps literally. And that would cost lives. Except for those cases, I kept the maps accurate to the model. The worst case, for the Bow, btw, would be the failure of Minnewanka Dam in late August and would result in the largest flood ever recorded on earth. Calgary would be an unliveable city for nearly three years!
    On the bright side, it is an earthen dam and they are the safest, and it is an old dam and they, too, are the safest. The flood water in downtown Calgary would be at the level of about halfway up from downtown to Crescent road. The downtown office towers would be in the middle of a large lake extending from the edge of the slope of the North Hill to Mount Royal. That I happen to live about 200 feet above downtown is just a coincidence, really.

    The latest on the Neanderthal genetics is that The Y chromosome appears not to have been inherited at all! Just the mitochondrial. So modern human females are believed to have rejected male dna carrying the Neanderthal Y chromosome and that was inherited. All in all, the Neanderthals had a tough time!

    And we were honest. When a young boy spent hours going through my bowl of Roman coins for a dollar each, he found one that was of an extremely rare emperor and was worth about a $100. I told him and wrote him up an identification slip for it after taking his dollar. Checking junk coins for such rarities would almost always be a waste of time and money, but it can happen just as a Royal Flush in poker can happen. But woe betide anyone who would count on such a thing.

    Calgary is a very boom and bust sort of place isn't it? With my limited means I do better in the bust cycle. It is all a matter of perception, I met an actress, a few years ago, who had come to Calgary to settle her boyfriends affairs. He had committed suicide when the stock market crash happened. He was a day-trader. He probably had far more money in his bank account than I did at the time, though. I suppose he couldn't bear the thought of losing his fast car etc. Pity. You meet such interesting people on the bus. The actress was 39 and had cystic fibrosis, a couple I know who lived in the same building as her boy friend took her on a day trip to the mountains and I was invited along to be the fourth. We hit it off at once like long lost brother and sister. She was worried that she would not find another but said that she did have date with a guy for dinner who seemed to like her a lot. I asked if he knew about her illness. She said yes. "Then you are on to good thing", I told her. They are happily together now. Some things work out the right way.

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  32. I realized after I send the comment that you had sold the axe. I do read what you write.
    Yellowstone Nationsl park is a fascinating place, I have had to privilege of visiting there at least a half dozen times. The power of nature is amazing. There is a massive obsidian cliff right along the road from which aboriginal peoples quarried for obsidian and traded it across the plains and other areas. They know this because they have done comparative studies of the different samples. Sometimes we found chunks of obsidian. At some sites you would find spots with numerous small flakes of obsidian which represented a workstation for tool making. How talented this craftsmen were in understanding the nature of the materials they transformed into functional tools.
    I love playing poker. I do not play for money but just the joy of the game.
    You have met some very interesting people that is what makes life so interesting. Off to a birthday party, Have a good evening.

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    1. Enjoy the party!

      Here's a couple of plugs for Lana:

      http://www.imdb.com/name/nm2094029/

      and her YouTube videos:

      https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCX6LPUcRMtNQhNpWUsARsOA

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  33. Sorry I was short with you. There was no reason to be rude to you. I certainly want to continue communicating with you because I find your ideas interesting andI want to follow their development .
    Tomorrow I have to have some tests and I am nervous about the outcomes.
    The party was enjoyable and they really enjoyed my potatoe salad.
    Thank you the info on Lana. How is your foot? Wishing you a restful night.

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    1. I didn't sense any rudeness. It seemed you were in a rush.

      I mostly took the day off and rested. I did discover that the injury to me foot was not what I thought it to be: It is bursitis of the heel combined with tight peroneal muscles (fibula) or something related (an examination would define it exactly). However, the treatment is about the same except I am going to stop using the foot sleeves I purchased and will get some different shoes that will help. The cause, get this, is too strenuous exercise in shoes that are too hard at the back of the heel. No wonder those 45 blocks had me limping. Today, I mostly remained barefoot and with little pain to my heel, though those muscles are still too tight. I should get some Birkenstock clogs or something similar. At least some soft deck shoes.

      I hope the tests reveal nothing serious. I have often noticed that when something really is serious, people are not worried at all!

      J&L's Blackwell Island Asylum adventure:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RKHrGDU0f14

      really expresses Lana's spirit. The world is her playground. If she turns out to live longer than anyone ever has with cystic fibrosis it would not surprise me in the least. I particularly got a laugh over Jen's worried comment: "Oh Lana, please don't get decapitated". I am so happy she found someone worthy of her.

      I did mock up the first chapter of the novel as a blog page. I could not get the formatting (easily) as it is in the document, but that's OK. As I will have no illustrations, I made one that just says Chapter .... in the Edwardian font to give it that "literary look". Easy enough to put the number in each time as I pasted 0 - 9 on a graphic where I can just cut and paste to the basic title. As one of my books I need for the T. E. Lawrence series is taking awhile (I think it is coming from California). I will start the serial after the current series (which still has no comments -- What? No one wants to be a pioneer in a new field of study? There's little spirit these days.

      John Howland sent me a Russel cartoon entitled "Victorian Risk Assesment" It showed two men looking at a rickety suspension bridge with missing boards spanning a deep and wide chasm. One man says "This may be perilous", the other replies "Excellent".

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  34. Thank you for writing back. I feel better now. The cartoon seems appropriated to your situation of developing a new field of study.
    I want to tell a little about myself. I am really 67 years of age and my birthday is in December. My hairdresser tells me that I have the most beautiful grey hair and that women would spend thousands of dollars to reproduct my color. Also, I have sparkling green eyes. As the Big Bad Wolf would say "the better to see you with". One thing is I am not the Big Bad Wolf. I do have a witty sense of humour, enjoy meeting new and interesting people ,and leaning and understanding new things.
    I understand how it feels to have sore ffeet not a pleasant thing to have. Goodnight. Also I typed this without my glasses on so forgive the errors.

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    1. You caught me just as I was about to turn the computer off and watch another episode of Downton Abbey on my tablet, in bed.

      I have grey hair too, getting whiter all the time, though my eyebrows are still dark (and a full head of hair -- my father went bald, but I take after my mother's side of the family in that respect -- Celtic genes, I think. Her maiden name was Neale, west country origin, but I had some distant relatives who were Welsh). I don't think anyone would spend much more than $4.95 to reproduce my hair colour, though, and my eyes are "indecisive hazel". Mother had blue eyes, father brown.

      Writing is my life, but I do try to get out and talk to people for more than a few minutes about once a week. INFJ's can be happily reclusive, which is not to everyone's taste! I even had my own room when I was married. I never feel loneliness. I'll be 67 on September 30th.

      Not too happy about having to walk less, perhaps I'll get a bike again.

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  35. I am back home, the test is done now have to wait three weeks for the results. One must always remain calm because there is no use worrying. Relaxing with my wimpy cup of tea and planning what I will do for the rest of the day. Probably will finish cleaning the dead plants from the plant pots and raking dead leaves off flowers beds.
    My mom mom's Welsh maiden name was Davies and her mother's English maiden name was Fallows.

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    1. That's the right attitude! It took me until I was about 55 to adopt it though. I'm off to buy some Crocs (I'll try them on first, though) then I'll start today's blog. It's a bit of a challenge not to get mired in philosophy with such abstract subject. I know how I'm going to start it but who knows where I will end up!

      When Carrie first got cancer, I had to bully her to get any examination and tests. later, I heard that is typical: most people when they get cancer completely deny the possibility of it, while those who are most concerned that they might have it, usually don't. It seems the cancer sets up its own defence by hiding itself from the person's awareness.

      Heart problem can also be tricky: When I had my heart attack, I was convinced that it was just heartburn. It was not until I almost passed out after getting tested that I thought it might be something real. I got home and the doctor phoned me to say get to a hospital now. less than an hour later I was getting a stent put in one of arteries.

      About a year later the same symptoms happened again: I phoned 911 and then waited outside for the ambulance and was rushed to hospital. It was heartburn. They still kept me there for a couple of days to make sure, though.

      Once, when moving to house next door to where I was living. I thought that I could do everything myself. in the middle of that I started to get heart palpitations, phoned the paramedics and when my neighbours saw them arrive, came to do my door to check on me. it turned out that I had been overexerting myself, it was a hot day and I was dehydrated. A paramedic said it was a common thing with athletes and I should drink lots and rest for a few hours. My neighbours then finished moving my stuff into the new house for me!

      One can too easily worked up about stuff. It's mind over matter: If you don't mind it doesn't matter.

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    2. Like typos and missing words, for example.

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  36. We all have our health issues. In 2009, I tripped over a bin of book that were on the floor in my classroom resulting in me spreading my shoulder. The pain was worse than child birth. They had my so drugged up that after they put it back in I thought wow this feels great maybe I will try lifting my arm straight up. Well guess what I put it out a again the look on the doctor's face said it all "you stupide woman". Then they had problem fixing it, I had so many X-rays I could had directed them in how to perform the procedure. Some people are very mean when they are on morphine but me I am very amusing. I developed pneumonia about three weeks after the incident. About a year later I came down with a cold that just would not go away and it turned in pneumonia again. This time I almost died, my lungs filled up with fluid and put stress on my heart. I was in ICU in an induced coma. I still do not know how long I was in the coma. They said I was a miracle. One does not realize how many people care about you until something nastily happens. I made a full recovery. One has to have a strong to desire want to live. Maybe I have a guardian angel.
    Hope the new shoes help.

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  37. I think it was in the mid nineties when I my G.P. told me that I was going to die. He was not being philosophical, he meant imminently. I had a swollen leg some time after neurosurgery on my lower spine and he had diagnosed deep-vein thrombosis. After going home and telling Carrie the news, we went to the Foothills for further tests. As I was lying on an examination table the nurse held my foot downward and asked me to try and pull it up. I did, suddenly, and she lost her balance and nearly fell over.

    Eventually, the swelling went down. Sometime after that I could feel a blood clot travelling through my head on occasion. A weird feeling. I think it settled, finally, in my right coronary artery where, finally, a doctor dislodged it and put in a stent while I watched it all on the monitor. "What's that thing that looks like a jellyfish? I said. "it's a jellyfish" he joked back, and then said "Are you always this cheerful when having a heart attack?" "I don't know", I replied "I've never had one before".

    I never felt that clot going through my head again and I no longer take any heart medications, not even low dose aspirin which I switched to Vitamin C and L-lysine (Linus Pauling regimen). I checked the medical experiments: same result as low dose aspirin but no long term bad effects. Bit more expensive, though!

    Early in 2010, my son-in-law Nigel's father was in the Foothills waiting rather too long for the same procedure. I visited him the day before it was performed and told him it was a piece of cake. The next day, after he had the procedure, he had said he felt strange. He lost consciousness and never recovered. I was shocked when I got the phone call.

    You might well have known him. He was Alan MacDonald, The head librarian at the U of C. and the University Orator:

    http://www.mhfh.com/macdonald-%E2%80%93-alan-hugh/

    He was the most delightful man. I wish I would have had more time to get to know him better. The first thing he ever said to me was "Thank you for Jasmin" (my daughter).

    The only important thing about life is how it is lived. That's why I appreciate such people as Alan, Lana, and of course Carrie, who achieved so much in the short time (45 years) she had.

    The Crocs seem to be performing well. Back to the blog...

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