Monday, October 24, 2011

Catch up 3: Podcasts about canyons and then rafting them.

Field work officially began last week, and my labmate (let's call him OSL) and I took off for the Moab area to do some scouting before our adviser joined us. The first thing we did was score a super sweet base camp location and important supplies.

Image of super sweet base camp location and important supplies.

Our adviser arrived with our field vehicle, and we got set to start sampling. Rough life, eh? Well actually, trying to "steer" that thing is not what one would expect. Especially considering one (me) began rowing 2 decades ago. Let me just clarify for you, this inflatable rubber thing is not svelt like a rowing shell, and those oars are not sleek and lightweight. But I digress.

One could have a worse field area to sample in.

One's challenges could be worse than finding a living tree to dock at.

A conveniently located outcrop of Cutler formation on the river's edge... now where did I put that GPS?

This one is not griping.

Wildlife bums.

Related only because of canyons and things, I had a podcasting assignment for my media tools class, and that resulted in this. It's not any of the following: good, complete, interesting. But I'm sharing it with you anyway.

P.S. I oared that raft over 2 sets of rapids and only got stuck on one rock and no one died and nothing/no one went overboard and lots of stuff/labmates/advisers got wet.

Catch up 2: Geology, Awards, and Stuff

Almost immediately after I returned from my sister's wedding in Canada, did I have to get on another plane and head up to Minneapolis for the Geological Society of America's Annual Meeting. This meeting is pretty much always awesome for many reasons:
  1. free beer
  2. reunions with geology nerd friends/colleagues/GSA buddies from last year/profs/friends who are the authors of the textbooks from your u-grad education
  3. field trips
  4. making new GSA friends
  5. meeting the program director for the exact NSF grant you intend to apply for over free beers

I started this meeting off with a geology field trip called "cycling the Mississippi Gorge", it involved learning local geology, riding bikes, eating really yummy yogurt, making new GSA friends, and learning local "fun facts" like: when Minneapolis was emerging as an up and coming mill city it was also the biggest producer of prosthetic limbs, and no, not peg legs (I asked), real jointed top-of-the-line-for-the-early-1900's prosthetics. There was also this random park with giant polished slabs of hematite in it. And giant mirrors glued to other rocks. It was a little weird...

I was not presenting at GSA this year, but instead going to enjoy the meeting and be flashed momentarily on the 2011 Hall of Fame screen.

Oooh - there I am! Don't blink or you'll miss it! Really there was a big fancy (and extremely nerve wracking) luncheon with presentations and speeches and things. The 4 of us getting awards and our "citationists" (the people introducing us) all had to eat lunch awkwardly on stage while everyone in the audience got to eat their lunch while NOT sitting on stage, which would have been far more preferable.

There was an amazing quilt that someone had (painstakingly) made of the geology of Minnesota. Unbelievable!

I finished off the event with another field trip, although I completely FUBARed the original plan. I was supposed to go on a relevant field trip, but stupidly scheduled my flight back in the middle of the trip. Amazing. So, since I realized this exactly 1 week before the meeting I could not get a refund and changing plane/hotel would have been too expensive, so I traded trips. Unfortunately this other trip involved much less learning and cool geology and fun facts. I did find a handful of fossils, which I gave to a guy from New Zealand who couldn't seem to find any himself and was far too excited about these run of the mill crinoids and brachiopods.

Catch up 1: Pomp & Circumstance

At the beginning of the month my "little" sister (can't remember how long ago it was that she surpassed me in height exactly - not that it's difficult to do...) got married. It was a big country club whoop de do involving taffeta and such. My favourite 3 photos of the event from my camera (operated by Becky) are as follows:

My fantastic cousin Fred.

My fabulous friend and camera operator; Becky, and my fierce cousin Amelia (can I actually limit myself to only "f" descriptors in this post?

The fiesty bride and fervent groom thoroughly enjoying their fancy speech. Ha! I did it!