Nirvana released Nevermind:
Before you read further, KEXP is playing Nirvana and grunge and Seattle bands all day today.
And thus Seattle really hit the map. I moved out here in 1985 and between grunge and Twin Peaks, we became the darling of pop culture for a while, not to mention launching Starbucks into the stratosphere. I kind of think Twin Peaks had more to do with the coffee craze than anything, since it featured prominently in the series and then here was SBux, a Seattle company peddling coffee.
Oh, BTW, I don’t listen to The End much anymore, I switched over to KEXP since they’re commercial free and play a lot more variety than KNDD does.
I didn’t care much for Nirvana at first. My roomie at the time brought it home and at first I just thought it was a lot of shouting and bad guitar. Then a new radio station came along called KNDD (The End) and started playing a lot of this new “alternative” stuff and I got totally hooked. Yeah, alternative and grunge are not interchangeable, but they more or less melded together at the time. I was actually kind of turned off of “rock” music by then, I felt it had become too overproduced and thumpy (Bon Jovi) or too cartoonish (Motley Crue); this was a breath of simple fresh air. People called it “punk for the masses” but I think it was more just getting back to the roots of hard rock: guitar, drums, bass, LOUD and in your face, but with a decent strong melody behind it. Then came Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains, Stone Temple Pilots (my fave), Blind Melon, etc. I didn’t need to buy too many CDs of it, it was all over KNDD radio.
Wasn’t totally positive, IMO. Kind of put an end to the ‘guitar god’ with really no real solos anymore. I can’t think of a single really good guitar player that’s not over 50 these days. And, of course, before Nirvana I could go back to Wisconsin and not have every other person ask where my flannel shirt was. . . . .
Google Earth reveals Nazca-like structures in Arabia
Kennedy says that many countries in the Middle East will not provide aerial photographs or permit flights for archaeological research, so Google Earth provides the only way to analyse the region.
Earlier this year, he identified almost 2000 potential archaeological sites in Saudi Arabia from his office chair using Google Earth’s satellite images. Expanding his virtual exploration to cover the entire Arabian peninsula he has now found over 2000 “kites” – stone structures with a roughly circular head and tails hundreds of metres long. Thought to be animal traps, the tails may have funnelled in gazelle and oryx, leaving them stuck in the head.
As you can tell by the quote, the headline is rather misleading. Worth going over to the little slide show they link to, as it shows other features viewed from above all around the middle east. They make the excellent point that some of these places are simply inaccessible and the only way to view things from the air is via Google Earth, since many countries don’t allow aerial photos. Also good for very remote areas. Of course, the trick is not to just identify possible sites but to actually go check them out. I’m wondering if you can identify things like kurgans in the remoter parts of eastern Europe.
Yes: 17th-Century Indian Fort Discovered Near Waldorf
Archaeologists from St. Mary’s College of Maryland, in partnership with the College of Southern Maryland and local businessman Michael Sullivan, have discovered a 17th-century Piscataway Indian fort just outside of Waldorf, Maryland. For years, historians and archaeologists have searched for evidence of what is known as the Zekiah Fort, where the Piscataway moved in 1680 for protection from raids by northern Indian groups and English encroachment on their land.
Pretty good article if you’re into that stuff.
Archaeologist finds ancient beaver teeth in eastern Oregon
If there was any doubt, a new find cements Oregon’s distinction as the Beaver State.
An archaeologist discovered two fossil teeth on the boundary of the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument near Dayville that represent the earliest record of a beaver in North America.
The molar and premolar — back teeth — were below an ash layer from an ancient volcanic explosion that scientists say dates to about 7 million to 7.3 million years ago.
Not nearly archaeology, although they apparently crossed the Bering land bridge at the time.
The Ruins of Dead Social Networks
Unindexed, they must wander the phone lines like ghosts, knocking packets astray, crashing your browser just when your post was finished, shutting down Tumblr. They are caught between the old, tangible world of books and things, where legacy systems kept on keeping records in that Dewey-Decimal, county-records way and the new Internet indexed world where anything that is typed into a box can be found. They flowered for a brief moment in the space between in real life and on the Internet, offering hope they’d be united. Now, only this tiny community of people know they existed. They are kept alive by the weak force of casual remembrance, flickering into and out of existence like Marty’s parents in the Polaroid from Back to the Future.
I only used university BBSs in the mid-late ’80s and maybe early ’90s. These were hosted on the university mainframes or minis (our main one back then was on something called the Cyber which I hated with the blazing heat of a thousand suns). I’m not sure I really hung out a lot on them. . . . .I seem to recall mostly using the chat feature either with people I knew or whoever was on. Matter of fact, I met the future ArchaeoWife on it way back in 1989 or so. We used the little Ethernet terminals sitting around the campus although I eventually got a 300 baud modem for a bit that I used for that.
I, errr, will admit that I used it for meeting chicks. As you can imagine, however, most of the females that used them a lot were, well, yer basic nerds so the ‘IRL’ meetings were often disappointing (for both parties, I’m sure). I do recall one, called herself ‘Frappe’ online, who was actually very attractive and personable in real life, although I only met her once or twice, and most of those were a few years later when we’d see each other around town (and the ArchaeoWife, of course). Lot of the guys at the time ended up designing games and other software in the ’90s and became, if not wealthy, at least very well off. Stupid geeks. . . .
Stone Age skulls on stakes found in Sweden
Swedish archaeologists say their discovery of Stone Age skulls mounted on wooden stakes is the first finding of its kind in the world.
The skulls were unearthed from a lake bed in central Sweden near the town of Motala, The Local reported Monday.
“We found two skulls that still had wooden stakes sticking out of them through a hole at the base of the skull,” archaeologist Fredrik Hallberg said.
More at the source link including a photo. Shoved up through the foramen magnum, it looks like. Hard to tell what was done with them, the stakes could be broken off so you can’t tell if they were placed on tall poles or what. I’ve never heard of anything like this so early, although I suppose it’s probably something one would expect.
Has it really been 20 years? The Ice Mummy: Little-Known Facts
The hikers thought the body belonged to an unfortunate victim of a mountaineering accident a few years back. In fact, they discovered one of the world’s oldest and best preserved mummies.
To commemorate the 20th anniversary of this sensational discovery, here are 20 known and lesser known facts about the Neothiltic frozen mummy.
Slide show’s okay, the most interesting part is the two photos of a reconstruction, errrr, “Artist’s impression of what Ötzi may have looked like”, which I suspect is fairly close to reality, given that they have so much remaining. Worth reading to catch up on what’s been learned since then.
What were you doing in 1991? I went on my first trip to the Valley of the Kings to do fieldwork, finished my MA thesis, and wondered what this loud obnoxious band called “Nirvana” were starting. . . .
With the painting anyhow. I finished painting the house today, at least the majority of it, I have a few little items still to do. But the vast bulk is done. Changed it from a blechy gray to a nice retro-looking blue: Wedgwood blue or close to it. I’m okay with the job I did, although if I had to do it over again I’d have done a better job of scraping. Not that I did a poor job, but I did miss some spots, usually on the underside of the board edges. And I had to do it over several weeks so between the time I scraped it once by the time I could paint or prime so more had started to peel off as a result of the first scraping. But I like it. Neater and more thorough than the previous job, and this ought to last a while. I put two coats on one side, the one that was in worse shape, had a lot of bare wood, etc. It gets most of the hot summer sun. The other sides could probably have used two coats, but they look fine as it is and I might do one side a year for a couple of years.
And I didn’t fall off of the ladder or roof once!
First off, the dog next door, Oliver, died this past weekend. The neighbors just woke up Saturday morning and found him dead. Apparently a stroke or some such. I hope it was relatively quick and painless for him. He was a decent dog, barked kind of a lot, but a big hairy sweetie for the most part. Lola — the other dog (both Newfoundlands) — is kind of traumatized. She’s been howling and stuff ever since when no one is around; she misses Oliver greatly.
Second, another pair of old speakers I don’t quite know what to do with:
They’re KLH Models 22 and 24 — yes, two different ones. They seem to have the exact same drivers, the only difference seems to be one (the 24) uses an RCA jack instead of two terminals for speaker wire. Both are around 1968 vintage and I snagged them at an estate sale last weekend. They have a fairly good reputation (KLH has a great rep at that time, these speakers are fairly well thought of) so I thought it was worthwhile to use them as a restoration/learning project. The cabinets are in pretty good shape though they both have a white film on one end: anyone have an idea what it is or how to get rid of it? I think all that needs doing is pretty up the cabinets and possibly replace some capacitors which these tend to need. I’ve never done that, hence the ‘learning’. Then again, I might just rehab the cabinets and drop them off at St. Vinnie’s as a charitable donation if the re-capping gets too expensive and/or time consuming. I’ve seen them listed online for $75 and $150, but I seriously doubt anyone will spend that much for them. We’ll see.
They’ve finally produced a report on the Oak Harbor muckup (see here, here, here, here, and here) and it’s apparently half-pleasing:
In terms of fault, the bedrock of the review revolves around a single sentence contained in a letter the historic preservation office sent to the city in 2009. It advised then civil engineer and project lead Russ Pabarcus that an additional archaeological survey was not needed due to the “urban nature” of SE Pioneer Way.
In the very next sentence, the author goes on to “strongly recommend” the city hire a professional archaeologist to monitor and report on ground-disturbing activities, create an inadvertent discovery plan and inform tribes of the project.
However, Schmidt said the previous paragraph was mistakenly taken to mean that it was unlikely the city would find anything because the area had been previously disturbed and that the city could take a “wait and see type of approach.”
“This simple misconception was probably the most damaging cause for not undertaking the DAHP recommended archaeological review,” said Schmidt, in his report.
It went on to say the misunderstanding may have been reinforced by an archaeological assessment of the area surrounding Flintstone Park just two years prior, which reported no discoveries. At about the same time, the city replaced a waterline on SE Pioneer Way and nothing was found.
Between the lack of a recommendation for additional survey and the earlier assessment and pipeline, they decided not to bother. Whether they were hoping to get lucky and not find anything or just didn’t give it a thought can’t be determined. OTOH, this should be a warning that at least a monitor ought to be present; not sure of the cost, but it seems a relatively cheap way of
covering some asses ensuring that at least a contingency plan is in place in case anything is found.