Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Decision? Discernment!

Tomorrow is the deadline for me to give Cal Poly - SLO an answer as to if I'm going to attend there this Fall. Today I am working through the facts as I find them and take this before God and get my answer by tonight to pass along to them. My only decision in this matter is will I submit to my Creator and listen to His instructions and then follow them. I have given the decision itself about Cal Poly to God to determine and He undoubtedly made that decision an eternity ago. Now I must effectively LISTEN!

Monday, April 29, 2013

Rule #1 Of Burglary: Cardio!

Recently a small family-owned market and deli (Kent's Meats & Grocery) in Redding, CA, was attacked overnight by an obese would-be burglar wearing pajamas who was clearly not an apex-predator when it comes to burglary. Below is the raw CCTV security footage of the incident. Below that is the clever and hilarious television commercial created from that footage. Notice the perpetrator trip over a concrete tire block as he escapes following freaking out from the activation of the burglar alarm resulting from his throwing a rock at the front window. He actually seems surprised the alarm activated! 

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Quote of the Day - "Bane"

In the movie The Dark Knight Rises there exists an utterly splendid exchange between a New York Stock Exchange trader and the arch-villain Bane. It occurs moments after Bane and his heavily-armed followers have taken over the main floor of the exchange. Bane surveys the crowd of traders and spots one trader in particular towards whom he walks. As he walks up to the young man he (the young trader) with futile defiance proclaims:
 "This is a stock exchange. There's no money you can steal." 
 To this Bane sardonically retorts,
"Really? Then why are you people here?"

Picture of the Day - Fox Theater

I was asked by a friend the other day to take some images of the Fox Theater in downtown Paso Robles for reasons I will not get into here now. This image was shot last Friday morning from across Spring Street from the old theater. It is a cool old building but severely contaminated by asbestos which makes it a sticky wicket for any potential buyer or any future renovation. Photo by Kim Patrick Noyes (all rights reserved).

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Picture of the Day - Non-Poisonous Ivie

This morning I attended a men's prayer breakfast at Paso Robles Bible Church which has become my secondary church home. To my surprise, I ran into my high school buddy Kevin Ivie (Atascadero High School Class of 1989). He is an  AWANA missionary trainer stationed in Texas. PRBC supports Kevin and this morning's event was a promotional get-to-know-everybody gathering of all the missionaries this church supports abroad. Above is a so-so image I took with my iPhone of Kevin's short presentation which was wonderfully done. Hopefully he and I will find time to break bread sometime before he leaves in a few days to head back home. Photo by Kim Patrick Noyes (all rights reserved).

Friday, April 26, 2013

Picture of the Day - Rich Ferguson

Tonight my high school friend Rich Ferguson who has gone on to become an accomplished magician-mentalist hosted a dinner to thank some of his friends and acquaintances for supporting him in his recent endeavor to become SLO Ambassador-At-Large as we discussed HERE and HERE. It was a wonderful get-together at the Upper Crust Trattoria in SLO with great company and delicious food and wine. In this image we see Rich posing following an incredibly inscrutable trick involving the two "THANKS" papers pictured above. Please pardon the crappy quality of this image. My camera is down for maintenance and so I had to use my iPhone and I'm not at all proficient at taking images with it, especially indoors. Photo by Kim Patrick Noyes (all rights reserved)

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Picture of the Day - 1100 Black Flags

Last week was Cuesta College's Mental Health Awareness Week. Active Minds is the on-campus club advocating mental health and they created the symbolic display above. This display features 1100 black flags symbolizing the roughly 1,100 college students who successfully commit suicide each year across the United States. This display was part of an awareness campaign by the Active Minds club. Given there are two major campuses to this college, last week this display was at the main campus in SLO and this week it was here at the North County Campus (NCC) as pictured above. My dear friend Erin Cunningham-Smith is the president of Active Minds and invited me to hang out while they set up this display but regrettably my schedule would not allow it. Photo by Kim Patrick Noyes (all rights reserved).

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Lord of the Ringworld

I have loved this track "Ringworld" by Fictivision (Bart van Wissen) since first hearing it in 2003 or thereabouts. I just rediscovered it while listening to old trance CD's from a decade ago. This song does not really get going until about the 1:50 mark but when it does embodies so much of what is so right with classic high-quality trance. It features a great dance beat but then it marries to that a haunting atmospheric quality and caps that off with the unsatisfyingly satisfying, endlessly torguing tension without resolution that I so love in high-end trance. The track is essentially done doing its thing by the 5:50 mark so it really rocks for about 4 minutes.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Picture of the Day - Giant Cigarettes

Over this past weekend I hung out with some friends in Morro Bay, CA, for a few hours. My dear friend Angelica pointed out to me that these exhaust towers at the power plant in Morro Bay look like giant cigarettes. I must admit I had never thought of them in that light but she makes a valid point. Photo by Kim Patrick Noyes (all rights reserved).

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Scripture of the Day - Paul (IICor.12:9)

Yesterday morning on the drive back from my daily morning constitutional walking my dog along with the dog of a friend, the passage of 2 Corinthians 12:9 came to mind loud and clear. I have not determined why I got that verse but I hope it does not mean something unpleasant and unpalatable is about to be placed upon me. However, I choose to trust God regarding this and all matters.

The context of this passage is Paul recalling in a letter to the Corinthians his then-past experience when he asked God to heal him of some sort of malady and God responded with a NO but explained why:
"... my grace is all you need: my power is made complete through human weakness." 
~ 2 Corinthians 12:9 (Kimicus ad Absurdum translation)

Saturday, April 20, 2013

R.I.P. Ernie Porter

It is my sad duty to announce that legendary local jade hunter and California Wreck Divers' Hall of Famer Ernie Porter of Atascadero, CA, died overnight at his home at age 94. Ernie was born on December 18, 1918, in Atascadero, CA. He grew up in the same neighborhood he lived most his adult life and where he died. He beloved wife Alice preceded him in death a few years ago. I had the honor of personally meeting and knowing Ernie and his wife during their latter years. Ernie was not only a friend and gentleman and patriotic American to me, but also a fellow rockhound and to me as an aspiring historian Ernie was a walking, talking treasure trove of local lore and history.
Below is a photo I took of Ernie last October at the Cayucos Gem, Mineral, & Jewelry Show.

Photo by Kim Patrick Noyes (all rights reserved).

Friday, April 19, 2013

Can't Keep Me Silent

I was in my car this morning en route to my morning dog walk and this trance track "Can't Keep Me Silent" by Angelic from the late Golden Age of Trance came up as I was listening to one of my old trance CD's I have not listened to in several years or longer. I had forgotten this one but remember being impressed with the weightiness of the lyrics despite their brevity. I feel this song still holds up today even with trance having been subsequently over-commercialized and diluted by changing musical tastes as the next generation comes of age. Until just now I have never seen the music video for this which isn't actually all that bad which although simple is effective. The lyrics are below the music player. Crank up your speaker and ENJOY!

Well, I guess, it's human nature
How people out-talk each other
But then we face the danger
Of only listening to ourselves

In the pressure of the situation
I won't let my tongue get tied
A silent voice in the congregation
I refuse to live a lie

Can't keep me silent
Can't keep me silent
Can't keep me silent
Source: Lyricsmode.com

The Existentialist Angst Of Henri

Last night at my church home group our hostess showed some of us this video whom one of her friends had recently shared with her in like manner. This is wonderful stuff and so captures the feline attitudinal essence.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Cal Poly Acceptance

Today I received confirmation that I have been accepted to Cal Poly San Luis Obispo for Fall 2013 as a history major. I am leaning towards deferring and receiving the offer a year later in Fall 2014 and complete more transferable units at Cuesta College  and thus save money. However, I have not made a final determination on that as of yet. Click on the logo below for a link to the school.

99 Luftballons

With all the concern lately about North Korea and their ambition to develop the ability to deliver a nuclear weapon via ICBM to the continental United States combined with a growing concern regarding Iran's similar aims and now add to that the terrorist attack in Boston, MA, the other day and it feels like there is a level of stress of impending doom not felt in my homeland since 9/11 but with more of a nuclear fatalism attached. I must admit that I myself have been mentally contemplating and preparing emotionally for that possibility in the not-to-distant future for some months now and it continues. I am not fearful but I am feeling a growing sense of possibility regarding it and in my mindset I intend to survive. However, that requires I start gaming for it now and mentally-emotionally I already am all the while I'm hoping it is unnecessary.

With that in mind below is the best and most famous song of the 1980's in regards to expressing a young generation's fears of nuclear apocalypse and protestation against that possibility. German band Nena created the pop rock gem "99 Luftballoons" (99 Balloons). There was a German and an English version but the German version sounded better and was more true to the artist as it was in their mother tongue and the subsequent English version had some revisions. Below the music player are the English-translation lyrics. Enjoy!

You and I in a little toy shop
Buy a bag of balloons with the money we've got.
Set them free at the break of dawn
'Til one by one, they were gone.
Back at base, bugs in the software
Flash the message, Something's out there.
Floating in the summer sky.
Ninety nine red balloons go by.

Ninety nine red balloons.
Floating in the summer sky.
Panic bells, it's red alert.
There's something here from somewhere else.
The war machine springs to life.
Opens up one eager eye.
Focusing it on the sky.
Where ninety nine red balloons go by.

Ninety nine Decision Street.
Ninety nine ministers meet.
To worry, worry, super-scurry.
Call the troops out in a hurry.
This is what we've waited for.
This is it boys, this is war.
The president is on the line
As ninety nine red balloons go by.

Ninety nine Knights of the air
Ride super-high-tech jet fighters
Everyone's a superhero.
Everyone's a Captain Kirk.
With orders to identify.
To clarify and classify.
Scramble in the summer sky.
As ninety nine red balloons go by.

Ninety nine dreams I have had.
In every one a red balloon.
It's all over and I'm standing pretty.
In this dust that was a city.
If I could find a souvenir.
Just to prove the world was here.
And here is a red balloon
I think of you and let it go.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Google Street View Hyperlapse

I found this aurally and visually sumptuous video just a short time ago on the Facebook "wall" of an acquaintance. Enjoy!

Quote of the Day - Max Radin

"[Practical gentlemen] have a number of bitterly sarcastical comments on persons whose minds are so open that their brains fall out." ~ Max Radin
That quote seems to be the genesis for various variants which have come out since, most significantly to my mind in chronological order being Arthur Hays Sulzberger's "I believe in an open mind, but not so open that your brains fall out" and subsequently Carl Sagan's "It pays to keep an open mind, but not so open your brains fall out.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Picture of the Day : The Big Four-Three!

My buddy Marybeth took me out for a birthday dinner at F. McLintocks in downtown Paso Robles tonight. Unbeknownst to me this establishment provides "surprise" birthday offerings and Marybeth generously arranged for me to receive one replete with dessert and being sung "Happy Birthday To You" by multiple employees and given this memento instant photo of the occasion. Outer photo by Kim Patrick Noyes. Inner photo by F. McLintocks. All rights reserved.

2013 Wildflowers of Adelaida

Today I drove out to my friend Marybeth's property in the Adelaida, CA, area to work but we ended up just hanging out and getting some easier and pleasant intangibles accomplished like business strategizing, surveying parts of her property, retrieving some lost images of her late husband from my own Gmail account that were stored in a copy of a message I sent her over a year ago. This visit culminated in her taking me out for a birthday dinner at F. McLintock's Bar & Grill in downtown Paso Robles, CA. More on that latter part in my next post but here I share with you some images I captured today of wildflowers I encountered out on the ranch. As it relates to the severe ongoing drought, the lupines on this property are actually doing better than normal as a result of the suppressed growth of the grasses which normally are much taller and thicker by this point in the year.
Purple Lupine
Crimson Pitcher Sage
Coast Indian Paintbrush
California Poppy
Purple Lupine patch in Shear's Vale. All images by Kim Patrick Noyes (all rights reserved).

Monday, April 15, 2013

Quote of the Day - Otto von Bismarck

Earlier this evening, while preparing my dinner, I found myself thinking about my life and life in general and how people either seize the day when opportunity knocks or else they allow it to slip away and squander Providence. At some point in that internal process I found myself thinking of this wonderful quote from Otto von Bismarck but in my mind expanded in a much broader context than mere statecraft and the affairs of statesmen:
"A statesman must wait until he hears the steps of God sounding through events, then leap up and grasp the hem of His garment." ~ Otto von Bismarck

Picture of the Day - Lizard Love Or Hate?

I encountered this odd scene last week in my alleyway as I was leaving to take my dog on a short walk. You are looking at two Southern Alligator Lizards. I'm not sure if this is a mating situation or two males determining pecking order. The gray one had the brown one in his mouth but the brown one didn't seem too disturbed whereas the brown one could have bitten the gray one but did not which leads me to suspect the gray one is male and the brown one female and guess what the male one wants? Photo by Kim Patrick Noyes (all rights reserved). 

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Scripture of the Day - I Agree With Peter

This morning at church Pastor Steve at NCCF gave a great little sermon that centered around this passage:
 And as they walked along the way He asked His disciples, "Whom do people say I am?" and they answered "some say you are like John the Baptist while others say you are like Elijah while yet others say you are like one of the other great prophets." He answered them and said, "But whom do YOU think I am?" Peter answered him and said, "You are the Messiah". ~ Mark 8:27-29 (Kimicus ad Absurdum translation)

Paso Rock & Jewelry Show In 3 Weeks!

The 22nd Annual Rockhound Roundup Gem, Mineral, & Jewelry Show is set for three weekends from now May 4-5, 2013, at the Pioneer Museum and Pioneer Park in Paso Robles, CA.  The show admission and parking are free and it will run from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days. The show will be hosting one time only the above 1320-pound meteorite, one of the largest privately-owned meteorites in the U.S. There will be over 30 dealers selling an assortment of rocks, minerals, gems, fossils, jade, jewelry, crystals, meteorites and other cool stuff. The club will host a specimen display case competition, demonstrations of various lapidary activities, a silent auction, raffle, geode cracking service, youth activities including a mineral identification hunt, as well as a country store and Santa Maria-style barbecue hosted by the Native Sons of the Golden West. Image above courtesy of Vince Pellerin.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

I Am Now Vina Robles

Today I was hired by Vina Robles to work their performance events at their nearly-completed amphitheater outside Paso Robles, CA. This hiring came about unexpectedly as I did not realize they were hiring on the spot. Not only that, given how I have lived like a gypsy most of my life this was my first ever job interview as such. I had high hopes while realizing most people don't pick up a gig like this on their first try at a "normal" job. Prior to this job I had done floor sales and booth construction and destruction at shows for Rocks & Relics, before that the same for my own business K& K Earthwerks, and all the while doing general labor projects for various clients the past several years. Before that while I was wandering in the wilderness so to speak I became an expert at inheritance liquidation. Needless to say I am both humbled and grateful and excited about this turn of events in my life whose effects and ramifications will be broad and far-reaching. My new employers will not regret their faith in me. God is good!

Update: I worked one concert here in the spring and that was it for reasons that are not entirely clear but seem to follow a pattern experienced by some other people I know who worked there initially as I did. But it is no matter now, it was fun while it lasted!

Computer graphic of what Vina Robles will look like when completed. These buildings are already in place but some like the amphitheater are still under construction albeit mostly complete. Image courtesy of Vina Robles.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Atascadero High School Alumni Memorial Page

I am the editor of the memorial page portion of Atascaderoalumni.org. I have just finished updating it today while I was home sick. I invite those with an interest to check it out by clicking on the icon below.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

My Top 10 Favorite Film Quotes

Here is a list of my current top ten favorite film quotes. I could have easily made it a top twenty or thirty but for purposes of brevity and thematically sticking with my Top Ten List series here is my latest one. As might be expected from me there are some deep concepts contained in most of these, some of which touch on  existentialist themes as I am oft wont to do.

  1. "Big things have small beginnings." ~ David (Michael Fassbender) in Prometheus.
  2. "I... drink... your... milkshake! I drink it up!" ~ Daniel Plainview (Daniel Day Lewis) in There Will Be Blood.
  3. "But I, being poor, have only my dreams. I have spread my dreams under your feet. Tread softly because you tread on my dreams. ~ Errol Partridge (Sean Bean) quoting W.B. Yeats in Equilibrium.
  4. "Try not. Do... or do not. There is no try." ~ Yoda in Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back.
  5. "You hear that Mr. Anderson?... That is the sound of inevitability... It is the sound of your death..." ~ Agent Smith (Hugo Weaving) in The Matrix.
  6. "Mama always said life was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get." ~ Forrest Gump (Tom Hanks) in Forrest Gump.
  7. "The world is changed, I feel it in the water, I feel it in the earth. I smell it in the air. Much that once was is lost; for none now live who remember it. ~ Galadriel (Cate Blanchett) in The Fellowship of the Ring.
  8. "You're all gonna die. The only question is how you check out. Do you want it on your feet? Or on your fuckin' knees... begging? I ain't much for begging! Nobody ever gave me nothing! So I say *fuck* that thing! Let's fight it!" ~ Dillon (Charles Dutton) in Alien 3.
  9. "I find your lack of faith disturbing." ~ Darth Vader in Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back.
  10. "Are you a Mexi-CAN or a Mexi-CAN'T?" ~ Agent Sands (Johnny Depp) in Once Upon A Time In Mexico.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

"Shit! The War Has Started!"

That frightened comment is a partly amusing/partly ominous exclamation from a Russian citizen in response to the shock wave from the recent Chelyabinsk Meteor fireball over Russia. It can be found at the 7:09 mark of this wonderful British documentary from Britain's Channel Four regarding this scientifically significant incident. HIGHLY RECOMMENDEDED!

Quote of the Day - "Agent Sands"

I recently watched the Robert Rodriguez brownsploytation movie Once Upon A Time In Mexico. In it I found this wonderful line spoken by Johnny Depp's character Agent Sheldon Sands to Danny Trejo's character Cucuy which scene can be watched in the player below:
"Are you a Mexi-CAN or a Mexi-CAN'T?"

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Quote of the Day - Dr. J. Vernon McGee

Today was a memorably beautiful spring day here on the Central Coast (North County of SLO Co. in particular). As I was walking my dog this morning I remembered an old saying my Grandpa McGee (Dr. J. Vernon McGee) used to utter on such days:
"I'd sure hate to be dead on a day like this." 

Monday, April 8, 2013

We Are The Explorers

I just came across this propaganda piece promotional video by NASA while reading an article about it. Apparently, there is an effort in place to get it in American theaters in showings of the next Star Trek movie in order to foster taxpayer support for the agency as well as pique the interest of young people into careers that further American space exploration. I feel this is a good idea and that the video will be worth the cost of production (and purchasing the rights to it from NASA whom can't legally run ads) for what it will do towards both objectives.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

April 2013 "Find of the Month"

April 2013 "Find of the Month" winning submission: wulfenite from Arizona.
This month's "Find of the Month" winner
Both photos by Susie Christian (all rights reserved).

Saturday, April 6, 2013

No Leaf Clover Lover

Although I'm not a huge Metallica fan I do appreciate both their artistic relevance to our modern civilization as well as their staying power given they are now in their fourth decade of cultural relevance. I'm also a California chauvinist and I'm proud they are from my home state. The first time I heard their song "No Leaf Clover" was on the radio here on the Central Coast sometime around the year 2000 (the song came out in 1999). I was duly impressed and listened to it intently any time I heard it playing on the radio. Later, upon simultaneously listening to AND watching the live performance below featuring the collaboration of the band with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra and seeing the amazing synergy between the band and the orchestra I was blown away even more. I regret I was not in that audience. I also feel that this collaboration was far more artistically relevant than the one that is to my knowledge the signature cross-genre collaboration of my generation, to wit that of Aerosmith-Run DMC with "Walk This Way". Check out the lyrics below the music player.

And it feels right this time
On this crash course with the big time
Pay no mind to the distant thunder
New day fills his head with wonder, boy....

Says it feels right this time
Turned it 'round and found the right line
Good day to be alive Sir
Good day to be alive, he said.....

Then it comes to be that the soothing light at the end of your tunnel
Is just a freight train coming your way
Then it comes to be that the soothing light at the end of your tunnel
Is just the freight train coming your way

Don't it feel right like this
All the pieces fall to his wish
Sucker for that quick reward boy
Sucker for that quick reward they said.....

Then it comes to be that the soothing light at the end of your tunnel
Is just a freight train coming your way
Then it comes to be that the soothing light at the end of your tunnel
Is just the freight train coming your way......
It's coming your way
It's coming your way......
Here comes

Yeah, Then it comes to be that the soothing light at the end of your tunnel
Is just a freight train coming your way.... Yeah...
Then it comes to be, Yeah...
Then it comes to be, Yeah...
Then it comes to be, Yeah...
Then it comes to be, Yeah...
Then it comes to be, Yeah...
Then it comes to be, Yeah...
Then it comes to be, Yeah...
Then it comes to be, Yeah 

Lyrics courtesy of AZLyrics.com

How Do I Know?

Until this morning I had never heard of new trance vocalist Jano (pronounced Yano) from Melbourne, Oz, or Moldovan trance prodigy Andrew Rayel, However, while listening to Armin Van Buuren's "A State of Trance 577"a short while ago I heard the track below and was blown away. Then I looked up the individual video for this track and was fairly well impressed by the tilt-shift videography it contains ( the first part is filmed in SLC) and more elements of the song than appear in the Van Buuren remix. Please enjoy!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Sunken Forest Of Alabama, NOT Atlantis

I only relatively recently became aware of the following story which I found utterly fascinating and a bit haunting. In 2005 Hurricane Katrina moved voluminous amounts of sand in one of undoubtedly many regions of the near-coastal shallows of Gulf of Mexico. This action exposed something rather remarkable in this one special place located about 60 feet under the water's surface and about 10 miles off the coast of Alabama in the undersea extension of the Mobile-Tensaw Delta. The last time this forest was above water was about 12,000 years ago before the rapidly melting glaciers of that era flooded the world's ocean's with their water and consequently drowned this forest. About 4,000 years ago the world's ocean levels stabilized at their current levels. This sunken forest was then buried by sand thus protecting it from both bacteriological decay as well as attack by worms and such. Obviously, this wood is now under attack by all the above sorts of organisms. Be sure to watch the entire short video below whose player is located beneath the following still images.
Large swamp cypress root base.
Tangle of cypress roots.
One such cypress tree base saw Katrina currents excavate beneath it creating a sheltering hollow for these fish.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Picture of the Day - Paso Bread Oven Goodness

This bread has just come out of 600° F heat at the Paso Bread Oven where I had the high honor of enjoying a wonderful dinner, my first ever glass of Pipestone wine (which met my expectations) and enjoyed my oldest bottle of wine from my own collection, the 1991 Maacama Creek Cab I talked about here a couple of weeks ago. That wine turned out fine to my surprise. Then there was a fabulous dessert. Oh, and I almost forgot to mention we were honored with the presence of local winemaking rising star Amy Butler. I thank our gracious hosts Heather & Kevin as well as those others who contributed food and/or wine for our feast. Most importantly, I thank God who gave me such friends and such a wonderful and fulfilling adopted family.  Photo by Kim Patrick Noyes (all rights reserved).

Picture of the Day - Early Spring Faux T-storms

This was the scene from the Paso Robles area looking northwards early this evening. Some of these storm cells developed rather interesting cloud features reminicent of more severe weather such as some wall cloud-looking structures and some beaver tail-looking structures although none of these cells became electrical to my knowledge. The same weather system that produced these clouds also dropped rain over the area this morning before I arose. Photo by Kim Patrick Noyes (all rights reserved).

Picture of the Day - First Fruits of 2013

This is the contents of my shared half-bushel basket from Kiler Canyon Farm with this being their first week of the 2013 harvest season. The following items are present in this pile: cilantro, dill, arugula, kale, radishes, oregano, salad mix, head lettuce, braising mix, spinach, garlic, and sconions. The potent earthy and "herby" odors coming off of this pile are tantalizing. I look forward to participating in one of the weekly harvests soon and will share it here when I do. HERE is a link to a view and commentary on the final weekly harvest of last year. Photo by Kim Patrick Noyes (all rights reserved).

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Caveat Emptor Moroccan Fossils

One huge area of fossil fakery and forgery in the collecting world is in Moroccan fossils. There are full-service fake fossil factories in Morocco whose sole purpose is to pump out large volumes of this garbage which deflates the market for the real thing and dumbs down the collective fossil I.Q. of the denizens of the fossil market. This is a rampant problem everywhere I go and it is driving me nuts. Below is a brief primer on some of the more common examples of this growing problem. 

This is a genuine mosasaur skull from Morocco.
This is a detail of the above mosasaur skull showing a close-up view of the jaw. Compare this to below.
This is a faux mosasaur jaw featuring genuine mosasaur teeth attached to it. These jaws often utilized real bone or fossil bone but are not mosasaur jaws and are shaped wrong and like this one are unnatural in the way the jaws rest in the matrix.
Faux trilobites being sold for $1150. Assuming for the sake of argument the trilobites are genuine (and I wouldn't) they certainly did not come out of the ground attached to that plate. Were this plate real it would fetch a whole lot more than that and not be out and unlocked for sale in an antique mall in Morro Bay, CA.
Faux trilobites - notice the symmetry of their placement and the perfectness of their features... and all for a price any middle class person can afford to pay. In reality, any genuine specimen this size and quality would be up for auction by Bonhams & Butterfield or even sold via broker quietly to a museum or high-end collector. The one above is essentially painted onto the rock plate and given a modest amount of detail and relief.
Especially obvious faux trilobites... rather highly stylized and produced cookie cutter-style as evidenced by their being exactly the same.
This is an obviously fake fossil collage or mosaic of various different pieces parts of various different individual fossil specimens of orthoceras and ammonites cobbled together with glue and cement in such a way as to appear to the uneducated eye to be a remarkable single plate specimen when it reality it is a sort of rock art tableau.
All photos by Kim Patrick Noyes (all rights reserved)

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Picture of the Day - Metamorphic Meeting

San Luis Obispo Gem & Mineral Club vice-president Mike Scheffer giving an informative speech on metamorphic rocks at tonight's monthly club meeting in San Luis Obispo, CA. Photo by Kim Patrick Noyes (all rights reserved).

Gangnam Style vs. Kim Jong Style

With both the now-ebbing "Gangnam Style" craze and its creator Psy and the still-escalating tensions with North Korea and its sheltered, overindulged, and petulant leader Kim Jong Un it was inevitable that somebody would blend the two threads. So it happened and  below is the result. In the first video player you see the pop-cultural phenomenon"Gangnam Style" and below that is the spoof music video "Kim Jong Style". Watch them in descending order so that the visual gags in the spoof make sense.