Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Cleaning House III

This last weekend we went up to my parents' house so we could watch General Conference [1] with them. Leann's family likes to eat treats while watching General Conference, so she made caramel popcorn for everybody to share. And I made a fresh salsa using the hot peppers from my chile pequín plant.[2] I tried to use few enough that it wouldn't overwhelm my weak-tongued siblings, but my sister Ashley managed to fish out a spicy bite and had to bow out to look for some peanut butter. For the last session of General Conference, on Sunday, we drove down to my Grandma's house. Before we left, I decided to remove a few more of my things from my old room. This time it was mainly wooden model dinosaur skeletons that I'd been collecting since my childhood. In high school I glued them together and spray painted them black. But I haven't done anything with them in a long time (as evidenced by how much dust you can see on them in the photographs below). I don't have anywhere to keep them (or a good reason to keep them), so I gave them up.

First up, Apatosaurus. Many are more familiar with the name Brontosaurus. But the only specimen of a Brontosaurus in existence turned out to be the body of an Apatosaurus with the head of a Brachiosaurus

A Brachiosaurus.

A Spinosaurus.

The well-known Stegosaurus.

And a Velociraptor. Despite what you see in the film Jurassic Park and its sequels, members of the genus Velociraptor were less than three feet tall and had feathers.

If memory serves, I also used to have a Tyrannosaurus, a Pteranodon, a Parasaurolophus, and a Triceratops but (if that's true) I'm not sure what happened to them.

I also had a wooden model of an eagle, which was given to me when I earned my Eagle Scout award.

I also had this model butterfly. When I painted the wings orange the spray paint came out clumpy but I thought this mimicked the scales on butterfly wings, so I left it.

In addition to abandoning these wooden models, I also got rid of the last of my insect collection. I've reported previously [3] that I've given away part of my insect collection. But I still had a case in my brother's room which had insects I'd collected during my time in México as an LDS missionary.[4] Alas, the mothballs in the case had long since evaporated and dermestid beetle larvae were quick to move in. Some of my favorite specimens were destroyed: a vinegaroon (vinagrillo in Spanish) [5], a Giant Swallowtail (Papilio cresphontes) [6], two giant millipedes, several Monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus) which were in migration [7], and a Black Witch moth (Ascalapha odorata).[8]


[1] General Conference consists of five two-hour sessions that are spread out over Saturday and Sunday. It is a time when the prophets and apostles called by God to govern the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints come together in a conference center in Salt Lake City, Utah, to give guidance and instruction to the members of the Church. All are invited to hear their words. You can, too, if you so desire, by visiting this website.

[2] See my post Summer Garden.

[3] See my post Cleaning House I. For more miscellanea I've removed from my parents' house, see Cleaning House II.

[4] For those who are unsure why Latter-day Saints (Mormons) go on missions, I recommend you visit here and here, where you can learn more about LDS beliefs concerning sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ. If you have more questions, ask and maybe I'll do a full post on the topic.

[5] We kept the vinagrillo in a bottle for a long time and fed it cockroaches we'd find around our apartment.

[6] I photographed one of these the last time I was in Texas. See my post Trip to Texas.

[7] They were so thick on the trees that I could grab them by handfuls (but I didn't since I only wanted a few).

[8] A Mexican superstition says that to see one of these moths (which can be as large as bats) signals impending death. I've seen one in México (which I caught and brought back to the U.S.) and one in Provo. But I'm still alive. Go figure.

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