Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Meet The Crew

So, I've been working on this dig going on six weeks now, and I realize that I haven't introduced anyone yet. Which I realize is kinda lame. I'll do my best to introduce everyone! Also, if anyone from field school is reading this (I don't think they are...), then I hope you don't take it personally? I dunno.

So, let's start with Dr. Dave Brauner. He's the head honcho pretty much. He's been working on sites at Champoeg (and generally just all around the Northwest) for  quite a number of years, so he really knows what he's talking about when it comes to this area of study. He's incredibly smart and a veritable encyclopedia of knowledge on French Prairie. He does have a bit of a tendency to run off on tangent story-lines, but at the same time, they're fun to listen to. His classes (like, the ones at OSU and not out in the field) are usually interrupted every once in a while with a nice long story about, say, fish, or something of the sort. Maybe not completely on topic, but still fun to listen to.

Right under Dr. Brauner in the hierarchy of the dig site is Molly Manion. She's sort of the field manager or something. She takes care of day-to-day proceedings on the site and whatnot. She's also there quite often to keep Dr. Brauner on track and moving forward with the topic at hand (it's a fun relationship they share, I think). Molly's working on her Ph.D. right now and is using the Champoeg area for her dissertation. She's kind of a hard-ass in a lot of ways, but I think it might be tough love? I hope? Heh. She's as sharp as a tack, though, and knows a hell of a lot about the area and the time period.

Our Lab Tech at the site is Jamie French. She's working on her Master's currently and helps Molly oversee the general workings of the site. She's pretty easy-going and might have the smallest hand-writing I've ever seen. She also gets frustrated when she has to correct our mistakes in cataloging all day, but that's pretty understandable...

Lyle Jincks is... broken. Heh. He was out at the site for a few weeks helping out Molly and Jamie (he's also a Master's student), but then something happened and he's now broken. I guess this happens a lot to him. He's back at the OSU lab now, taking care of stuff there. He's a bad-ass, though, in the classic sense of the term. Just as an example, he took off to... Peru, I believe, and went climbing in the Andes. While there, he lost TONS of weight (he's not a heavy guy in the first place) and contracted pulmonary edema. So... there's that.

On to the students! There's Mike, who's an older gentleman (not old, just older than the average [maybe 40 to 45 or so]), though he keeps up with all the other students. He's cool and works pretty hard. He normally works at a hospital, but got into this program a few years back as a volunteer, and finally took the class this year.

Then there's Nicholas. He really seems straight and narrow, but not in an annoying way at all. He's just pretty chill and is eager to help. All in all, a super nice person that doesn't get on anyone's nerves, I do believe. I don't think it'd be possible.

Another person who isn't, I believe, capable of getting annoying, and that's Elizabeth. She has two kids, ages 11 and 12 (they came out to the site for a little while), but still keeps up with the general pace of the group. She also tans like mad at the site. It's almost possible to tell how late in the day it is by how dark Elizabeth is. Very cool person, though.

Speaking of people that have children (there seem to be more than I expected), Mary-Ann is a bit of a firecracker! She doesn't look it at all, but she can trade jabs with the best of them (verbally, of course). Though, we did just hear about her first and only fight, that she apparently won. She's spunky wrapped in a demure package.

Her partner for the past few days has been Clair. She's nice, but you have to be able to sort out what she says and what she means. Mostly because there's a barrage of insults flying across the table between a number of parties (mostly in jest). So, I hope I have her pegged right and she's just giving me crap, but whatevs. She did tell me that I stole the level rod from her on one of the first days. Maybe she still holds it against me. Who knows.

The insults, or whatever they actually are, generally stem from, or revolve around, one person. Ryan. He's the... comic relief of the dig? That's not necessarily the right term. He just keeps talking and random thoughts seem to pour forth from him; much of it is jokingly racist or misogynistic. You know, the usual... Ruffies tend to come up a lot when he's around... I'm not sure why. Also, he may not be the most focused worker. But, you kinda can't help but like the guy, for some reason.

His partner, currently, is Cayla. She has to put up with... quite a lot. Heh. Working with Ryan is a feat. But, she gives it just as much as she gets it. She's feisty. All-in-all, a very nice person. And commendable for her fortitude in putting up with her partner.

The last three people are all pretty good friends. The last one of their group is my current partner, Ben. He's the resident hipster/ginger. He's a pretty good partner to be paired with. He's fairly focused, but not boring (far from it) and he generally keeps the mood upbeat.

(Crap this is taking longer than I had hoped. They're gonna get shorter.) Jacob is pretty much the consummate farm boy. He's a hard worker and pretty agreeable. Pretty damn smart, too.

Karen is... a space cadet? She's nice and pretty chill, but she just doesn't pay much attention to stuff. Seems to  have something else to focus on, or something.

Melody is oddly intimidating. She's a weird combination of hippie and ex-military. I don't really know what to make of her. She's an older woman that talks about some of the most random stuff and seems to have held every job ever.

Her partner is another Molly, but she may be the exact opposite of Molly Manion. She's older as well, but she's SUPER annoying. I've had her in class before, and she always has something to say, often disrupting the class to say it. I hope she doesn't read this, but honestly, she bugs the ever-living hell out of me. And she's the slowest person on the dig, I believe.

Mairee, on the other hand, is not annoying at all! She's really, really quiet and unassuming, but she's pretty nice. She's very meticulous in her work and pretty much keeps to herself.

Scott, for some reason, always tries to make Mairee laugh. It's become his daily goal. He's a pretty good guy. "Special Scott" is in the military and we all generally agree that messing with him would be a bad idea. However, he's really, really nice. He's easygoing and gets along with everyone quite readily. He disappeared, however, because I think he got called back to his unit, unfortunately.

Another Army representative in the group is Matt. He's even more reserved than Mairee, it seems. He's incredibly quiet, but every once in a while he throws out a good comment, generally made all the better because he never talks. He's really focused on his work and is a great partner.

Chelsea is a pretty easy to get along with person. She's not overly loud or obnoxious, plus she's got a cool last name (Alava). She works pretty diligently and keeps things moving along. Generally a nice person and a good partner.

Last but not least (I think?) is Chris. I... think that's how you spell her name? Anyway, she's another one that I've never worked with. She's fairly quiet and keeps to herself. She stole my shovel for a few days, which I totally hold against her. Especially when she thwacked me on the head with it (on accident and not at all hard). But whatevs. Haha. I'm just territorial about my tools.

Anyway, I hope that was everyone! And sorry for this weird post. There just hasn't been much interesting stuff going on at the site due to our trying to finish things up. Maybe the next one will be more interesting? I suppose you'll have to read it to find out! Haha.


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