Ho, Ho, Ho from the Malamute Saloon…

Dateline:  Bournemouth, England – December 21


Wise Words (1)

Going through Bob Sickler’s outstanding book, Detectorist, first published in 1993, two of his musings leapt from the page. The first of which concerned PI machines and their propensity for elongated iron/ferrous objects: Bob poses the question if it’s technically possible for the signal to be transformed to visual display or readout which would go a long way in helping to overcome this tiresome aspect of PI machines. Garrett’s have something similar with their awesome GTI 2500 machine so why can’t this technology be adapted to PI machines? I cannot imagine that since 1993 when Bob put pen to paper, the men-in-white-coats in downtown Garland have not considered the prospect. On the other hand of course…

Wise Words (2)

Probably the most succinct aspect of Bob’s book, is at the back, where he says that it’s not so much the price of your metal detector that will fill your goody-bag, but how, and where you use it. The most expensive piece of kit in the world won’t find coins where none exist. However, if you use it where coins are EXPECTED, then even the lowest priced machine will do the business.

The late Colin Hanson (FID’s former Secretary) often used a simple to use, entry-level metal detector and time and again, whether on a Roman site or on the beach, he invariably did better than me.



We have absolute proof that those who fancy themselves as ‘archaeologists’ often have poor memory recall, are usually coy about their employment record, and a tendency to lapse into hypocrisy. Self-described archaeologist, detectorist, and collector hater, Paul Barford, demonstrates his prattery to perfection; this utter (but funny) garbage posing as intellectual comment appeared on his blog:-

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Why are US Authorities Letting Culture Criminals off the Hook?

“Why are US authorities and politicians protecting cultural racketeers […] Why are US police and prosecutors routinely failing to investigate and prosecute cultural heritage traffickers?”

…and so he whined thereon, et al, ad nauseum.

For some reason, Barford, made no comment when it was reported that Daniel Amick pleaded guilty to violating the Archaeological Resources Protection Act, admitting to removing 17 artifacts, including arrowheads, from public lands on two field trips to New Mexico, according to the statement by Kenneth Gonzales, U.S. attorney for the District of New Mexico.

Amick received just ONE YEAR’S probation for the heritage crimes of which Barford so bitterly complains. Could it be in the Barford psyche, ONLY non-academics (read, you and me) should face the firing squad?

What a 24-carat plonker he really is!




My thanks to the wags who sent in these jokes which I happily reproduce below. (And ‘Lisa Mac’, if you’re reading this none of these jokes refer to you, though I suspect you know the direction of my aim) :-


A man in a bar stands up and proclaims, “All archaeologists are ASSHOLES!”

A man at the front of the bar stands up and says, “Oi! I resent that!”

So the first man asks, “Sorry, are you an archaeologist?”

“NO! I’m an asshole!”


At a convention of biological scientists, one researcher remarks to another, “Did you know that in our lab we have switched from using rats to archaeologists for our experiments?”

“Really?”  the other replied, “Why did you switch?”

“Well, for three reasons. First we found that archaeologists are far more plentiful, secondly, the lab assistants don’t get so attached to them, and thirdly there are some things even a rat won’t do.”


An archaeologist dies and goes to Heaven. “There must be some mistake,” the archaeologist argues. “I’m not ready to die. I’m only 95.”

“Ninety-five?” says Saint Peter. “According to our calculations, you’re 22.”

“How’d you get that?” the archaeologist asks.

“We added up your excavation reports,” St. Peter replies.


Q: What do you call a smiling, sober, courteous person, at an archaeological convention?

A: The caterer.


Q: What’s the difference between Wally and God?

A: God doesn’t think he’s Wally.


As the archaeologist awoke from surgery, he asked the nurse, “Why are all the blinds drawn?”

The nurse answered, “There’s a fire across the street, and we didn’t want you to think you had died.”


A woman and her little girl were visiting the grave of the little girl’s grandmother. On their way through the cemetery back to the car, the little girl asked, “Mummy, do they ever bury two people in the same grave?”

“Of course not, dear,” replied the mother, “Why would you think that?”

“The tombstone back there said… ‘Here lies an archaeologist and an honest man.'”


What’s the difference between a bad archaeologist and a good archaeologist?

A bad archaeologist makes people wait an eternity for the excavation report: A good archaeologist takes longer.




Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity.


Wishing you all a very merry Christmas and a prosperous, lucky
New Year….

I’ll see y’all in the bar!



Filed under Metal Detecting

3 responses to “Ho, Ho, Ho from the Malamute Saloon…

  1. Big Tony From Bayonne

    the day any metal detecting company invents a machine that actually shows you what is in the ground —- there will be no room to detect! It would be a modern day gold rush.
    Happy Holidays to all!

  2. Tony:

    Never mind that it shows what’s under the ground, I’d like it to show the co-ordinates of the nearest pub and how far away, and what single malts and beers are on offer. Even what the barmaid looks like!

    Have a great Christmas ole pal.

  3. Bob Sickler

    The author, like the book, is getting older, but my concept is still fresh the hope and dreams of myself and many others. Thank you John for keeping public the interest in the dream. Having a metal detector analyze buried metal composition and accurately report the target is quite a lot to ask for unfortunately. My guess is the technology probably exists currently in some obscure context, but is far more expensive than us coin finders are willing to part with… But a guy can dream can’t he! Merry Christmas everyone!

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