About me & dinosaurs
Wherein I attempt to explain how this started and if I'll ever grow up.
That's me on the right and one of my my good friends. The mount here at the Carnegie Museum in Pittsburgh is charging after a baby Apatosaurus while the adult Apatosaurus looms above - you can see a piece of the tail. This exhibit is part of "Dinosaurs in Their Time" which includes the wonderful dueling T-Rex display. The link below, however, is disappointing in its presentation of one of the great dinosaur exhibits.
I recently finished Brian Switek's excellent My Beloved Brontosaurus (available on Amazon) wherein he tries to explain how he became a "paleo-nerd." I've had "dinosaurs on the brain" (my term) for much longer than Brian but I certainly understand the disease.
Since that 1975 article, I've followed dinosaurian developments passionately. But there was one other incident that forever cemented my relationship with the dramatic denizens of the prehistoric world.
My first job out of college took me from my native Ohio to Texas where I ended up just 30 miles from the Paluxy River and the famous dinosaur tracks there. My first day there I was talking to my new boss and somehow I mentioned the dinosaurs in the Sinclair exhibit at the World's Fair. My boss (J. Louis Evans) said "Do you know where those statues are now?" Nothing would do but a trip to Glen Rose the next day to see the Brontosaurus (now Apatosaurus) and Tyrannosaurus rex statues.
But here's the thing: I knew about the stories of how the trackways were made and supposedly how some carnosaur was following the herd of sauropods. There I was standing in the actual fossil footprints looking down to a bend in the Paluxy and I could "see" two Acrocanthosaurs coming up the stream.
In 1993, the special effects crew of Jurassic Park reached into my brain and pulled those dinosaurs out. I'm not ashamed to say I cried there standing in the Paluxy and again when I saw Jurassic Park.
Paleo-Nerd. Yep. I understand you Brian.