Saturday, December 1, 2007

Dinichthys.




So, as there was a long gap between my last two posts, and they were both sort of, well, lets be honest, aiming for a certain kind of gravitas--an aim that's apt to miss--, I thought I would say a few words about the image accompanying my profile and, in part, the right side of your screen.

This is image is from a set of images I found on the Case Western University website, in the geology department. The set of images concerns the geology--both in terms of rocks but also archeological excavation--of a large portion of Ohio.

I grew up in Cleveland.

A place in Cleveland I went sometimes when I was young, with my parents, was the interpretive center of the Rocky River Metroparks. This is a chain of parks with trails and recreation areas which forms a discrete "Emerald Necklace"--as its called--around Cleveland and Cuyahoga country. A shallow, swift, river, flanked by large shale cliffs runs through portions of the park and empties into Lake Erie:



All of this was once under water. During the Pre-Cambrian era, all of this was covered by a shallow, inland salt sea. (This is the point where I recite what I still learned from trips to the interpretive center. Somehow, as a child, I was completely enthralled with the the deep time of my hometown). One of the inhabitants of this sea was a creature we now call a Dinichthys. This was a sort of armored fish: a bit shark-like. In the interpretive center, as a child, I was simultaneously terrified and fascinated by a cast of a fossil of a whole Dinichthys which was hung from wire from the ceiling.

The photo to your right, and in my profile, includes a bit of shale from the cliffs of the Rocky River (yes, I know, the name is funny, and descriptive) containing the fossil of a jaw bone from a Dinichthys.

2 comments:

sophie klahr said...

if you miss your Dinichthys, I believe there's one at the Carnegie. The fish looks familiar, what can I say.

Lovely hearing your poems last night.
I'm interested in your motivation. Perhaps an occasion will arise in which to talk shop?

highlyeccentric said...

Hi Dan, just a note to let you know I linked to a couple of your posts in the latest carnivalesque:
http://highlyeccentric.livejournal.com/242435.html