Monday, September 7, 2015


Without valor or dignity, I resume after 5.5. weeks on the field.

August 21, 2015

9:54 am: I’ve been on the field for five-and-a-half weeks, and I managed to red ink the hard copy of the manuscript over the week I taught my field course, and later during a few rain days. I managed to clear past the dentition, vertebrae, and ribs; presently I’m working my way through the hemal arches. After that are the gastralia and then the appendicular skeletons (pectoral and pelvic). I’m at hemal arch F; the sequence goes up to R. I’ve been home since the 17th, and I’ve been working away at the ms since then.

The good part about the description of the postcranium is that it does not need the extensive additions that the skull and mandibular ramus require.

10:01 am: Hemal arch G reached!

10:10 am: Hemal arch H reached!

10:37 am: Hemal arch I reached!

10:43 am: Hemal arch J reached!

10:52 am: Hemal arch K reached!

11:07 am: Hemal arch L reached!

11:18 am: Hemal arch M reached!

11:35 am: An interruption comes.

4:09 pm: back to hemal arch M!

4:15 pm: Hemal arch N reached!

4:26 pm: Hemal arch O, the most erotically storied of the letters, is reached!

4:36 pm: Hemal arch P reached!

4:40 pm: Hemal arch Q reached!

4:46 pm: Reached the last hemal arch!

4:51 pm: Gastralia, lateral segments reached! Time for a short break.

5:02 pm: Break is over.

5:09 pm: Medial segments reached.

5:31 pm: Early dinner time.

9:07 pm: Following a late afternoon nap, dinner, and Night Train to Lisbon: gastralia (posterior flange, left side).

Music: Beethoven, symphonies 7 & 8.

9:22 pm: Done with the gastralia; now on to the appendicular skeleton, starting with the pectoral girdle!

9:28 pm: Just cleared past a relatively lean description for the scapula, which will have to be fleshed out later…

9:32 pm: Just finished with the coracoid, another brief description in need to expansion…

9:34 pm: I’ve reached the humerus, but my stomach is gnawing; time for a brief break.

Plate: French bread, white wine salami, fresh mozzarella, garlic-stuffed olives, grape leaf, Tsantali retsina.

9:50 pm: Reached the pelvic girdle!

10:10 pm: Done for the day. I stopped short of the acetabular region of the ilium.

Night thoughts among tyrannosaurs
The muse keeps her hand from mine
The labyrinth is one wall and one turn long
The serpent is two heads and one action long
(The art at times will keep its motive…)

August 22, 2015

9:12 pm: Late start after a full day; resuming with the ilium.

9:21 pm: Reached the pubis!

9:35 pm: Reached the ischium!

9:41 pm: Reached the femur! These sections (pectoral girdle and limb, pelvic girdle and limb) strike me as somewhat brief and need a little fleshing out.

9:55 pm: Reached the tibia!

9:57 pm: Hunger gnaws again.

Plate, Music: As before.

10:19 pm: Resuming the tibia.

10:39 pm: Done for the night.

August 23, 2015

2:59 pm: Resuming the tibia.

3:13 pm: Reached the fibula!

3:31 pm: Time to make some coffee with a few dashes of cinnamon.

3:44 pm: Coffee served – back to the fibula!

3:47 pm: Reached the proximal tarsals – starting with the astragalus!

4:06 pm: Time for more coffee!

4:12 pm: Coffee – back to the astragalus!

4:25 pm: Reached the calcaneum!

4:38 pm: Reached the distal tarsals!

4:47 pn: In the midst of distal tarsal 4; time for a nap.

5:47 pm: Nap over; back to distal tarsal 4.

6:01 pm: Reached the pes; time to stop.

8:37 pm: Back to it.

8:45 pm: Just got through an unacceptably brief description of the pes; this section will have to greatly expanded. I’ve reached the Ontogeny section!

8:52: Dinner break.

9:35 pm: Instead of forging ahead into the Ontogeny section, I’ll change gears and go back to revising the manuscript. This’ll take me back to the ectopterygoid. But first, food & wine…

Night thoughts among tyrannosaurs
But first
Food & wine;
The day rakes & talons
Pillar & pine
For the beautiful creatures to Night
For night to blood & beast & opuline;
For glutton lust ruled
To light the mind.

August 24, 2015

2:46 pm: Resuming the ectopterygoid.

5:05 pm: Time for a break.

8:55 pm: Resuming the ectopterygoid.

9:21 pm: Dammit - hunger again; back soon. I have felt fatigued all day & my insides feel like an old punching bag.

747 pages written; revising page 325.

August 25, 2015

9:23 am: Back to the ectopterygoid!

11:20 am: Holy crap – done with the ectopterygoid! Now; on to the epipterygoids.

11:34 am: Time for a brief break; reading for while I’m goofing off: The Structure of Evolutionary Theory (Gould), Evolutionary Biology (Futuyma).

11:42 am: Resuming the epipterygoid!

11:44 am: Unscheduled break.

12:16 pm: Back to work.

1:15 pm: Interruption; have to set this aside for a while.

9:44 pm: Night thoughts among tyrannosaurs
You will not feel what I feel
I will not feel what you feel
The night will build
The day will steal

August 26, 2015

~8:15 pm: Back to the epipterygoid!

8:44 pm: Done with the epipterygoid; now I’m positioned to backtrack to take care of loose threads in the section on the palatine. However, a headache is getting in the way; a short break…

~8:50 pm: Back to the palatine!

9:13 pm: Small break (concession to headache).

757 pages written; revising page 316.

August 27, 2015

5:15 pm: Back to the palatine!

6:10 pm: Good progress made, but hunger’s forcing me out.

6:22 pm: Back at it!

6:39 pm: Dinner break.

8:07 pm: Back to the maxillary process of the palatine!

9:06 pm: It’s been a surfeit of palatine – it’s a very interesting and informative bone, but it is also complex and exhausting to describe. Time for a brief break.

9:36 pm: Back to the palatine!

9:50 pm: Hmm – looks like the palatine is effectively done! Next is the pterygoid, which I’m not prepared to face tonight.

762 pages written; revising page 344.

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