I’ve settled back in New York for the next few months to enjoy the cold and snow that I’ve missed all year.
Rather, I’m using this time to work on a handful of projects I’ve had floating in my head these past few years. All of them require a lot of time to think and plan and will undoubetdly lead to at least one or two headaches, but I feel they are worth it.
The first project is a podcast series. Ever since the founding of Sexy Archaeology, I’ve wanted to incorporate a podcast into the mix. The one I’ve planned takes inspiration from A History of the World in 100 Objects, a BBC documentary series in which a hundred artifacts from the British Museum were chosen to tell the history of the world. My idea takes this premise of telling a collective history through individual artifacts, but tightens the focus to my home turf: Jefferson County. I’ve chosen twelve artifacts from the Jefferson County Historical Society which I feel best tell the story of this county; from its pre-history right up to the present day. I’ve finished drafts for the first two episodes and will soon be seeking out friends who can fact check for me and make sure that I haven’t made any flubs in my narrative. It’s a time consuming project, but I’ve found that researching the history of where I grew up has been an enjoyable endeavor. Five years ago, I could have cared less about the history of this area, but once you begin to peel back the layers, it’s actually a pretty exciting story. I’m looking forward to sharing that with people.
My second project is a bit more over the top. Over the past few years I’ve taken note of archaeology’s absence in my hometown of Watertown, New York. I find this deeply unsettling. When you are passionate about something, you want to see it everywhere you go. With the exception of a very few instances, I feel as thought the process of archaeology is almost absent from public exposure, secreted away for a select and greedy few. About a year and a half ago, I began devising ways to get members of my hometown community more involved in the world of archaeology. I came up with a detailed plan for an event I call Jefferson County Archaeology Week.
Jefferson County Archaeology Week (JCAW)is a program designed to encourage members of the public to perform a basic archaeological excavation in their own back yards to unearth the history beneath them. With the help of a specially designed website, participants would be tutored in conducting all the steps leading up to and through a safe excavation. Tutorials would include how to choose a safe and worthwhile site, excavation preparation, how to excavate, how to record data, and instructions on basic artifact curation. After viewing the tutorials, participants would possess the basic knowledge on how to open a 1m x 1m test unit in their backyard.
I’m hesitant to go into too much detail, but I feel the project would be incredibly rewarding. Both projects will hopefully help to benefit the Jefferson County Historical Society which has been mired in financial difficulties for the past few years. Both ideas have been mentioned in passing to the museum staff, but I’m hoping to schedule a more thorough meeting before I head back to California and garner their full support.
Aside from that, I’m working on a few articles here and there, but the podcast and JCAW are my two babies. I’m the proud father trying to bring them up right and juggle a social life and vamped up training regime. Hopefully, I’ll find time to post updates here or on SexyArchaeology.org. As always, if you have any ideas you think could help me out, drop me a message. It is appreciated.
It’s almost the end of the year, make the most of it!