Message #138: From: AzTeC SW Archaeology SIG To: "'Matthias Giessler'" Subject: Fossil Prices, Phsyiographic Provinces, and Death by Phone Date: Wed, 08 May 96 10:21:00 MST Encoding: 34 TEXT From: Brian Kenny Archaeological and Anthropological Items from Forbes Magazine, May 20, 1996 Forbes presents a brief follow-up report on the Tyrannosaurus rex named Sue dug up by Peter Larson of Hill City, S.D. Larson didn't go to jail for digging up Sue, but for illegally carrying currency abroad and illegally collecting a fossil (not Sue) worth less tha $100 from federal lands. Larson is serving two years in a federal prison in Florence, Colorado. Despite all this, Forbes reports that the federal government will now allow Larson to sell Sue, with a sale expected to bring about $5 million. Forbes also reports that the "debacle has spooked collectors and sellers," with Christie's and Sotheby's ditching fossil sales altogether. Forbes says that fossil prices are down by at least thirty to thirty-five percent. Forbes defines physiographic provinces in unusual ways. For example, the magazine reports that geographers and botanists defined the Great Plains beginning at the hundreth meridian (the approximate limit of twenty-inch annual rainfall). It further notes that banks and insurance companies had an early policy of not lending money for agriculture west of the hundreth meridian. Regardless of actual longitude and rainfall, if you couldn't get an agricultural loan, you knew you were on the Great Plains. [ Aha! Somewhere in all this, there must be a explanatory theory for development of irrigation agriculture in the American Southwestern. ;-) ]. Anthropologists take note of immigration patterns, so check this out. Forbes says that the Chinese strive to populate California's San Gabriel Valley to become doubly lucky in the 818 area code, eight being a very lucky number for the Chinese. Pacific Bell plans to add a 626 area code in the area, and the Chinese community is in uproar! People are suing the phone company to stop the proposed change. Forbes wryly notes that Pac-Bell will at least avoid area codes using the number four ( in Korean, Mandarin and Cantonese, the number four [pronounced "sa"] sounds like the word for "death" ).