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List Family

JJSwaim wrote:

> Michael has raised an important point regarding public relations.

Although I am not very much interested in public relations, I'd like to
comment on some of our charming horticulturist's ideas and feelings
about Peekskill, Portales, Monahans, etc. No one on this list will deny
that she is a very intelligent person. In other words, please, read her
comments twice or even thrice to fully understand what's written between

the lines. There is a lot for everyone to think about, to consider, and
reflect on. Julia's words are not meant to be deleted by just hitting
your delete keys but should be read and re-read to find the philan-
thropical meaning of her messages.
For a long time I thought Julia was the only Lady on this List. The
longer I am part of the List, the more I am glad to realize there are
(Fortunately!) more Ladies in this male-dominated domain that
meteoritics still seems to be and I wish we would hear more of their
comments like Jeanne's allusion to the 'Little Prince' which I
appreciated very much and I am not the only one I can tell you. I was
equally pleased to hear from Linda ("And 'Bravo' from  New Mexico. Stu
has described the joy of meteorites")and all the other Ladies (Sarah!)
whom I am not mentioning personally at this moment.

> In spite of recent problems on the list, we are a fraternity ...

Yes, we are - a fraternity or a sorority, a mixture of both or whatever
you would like to call it. You will remember that when I spent a week in

France in April, I missed the List because it had already become part of

me - a family in good and bad times! This is why I am still here. When
we had this Monahans hype, one of the List members emailed me privately
informing me that (s)he had unsubscribed because it had developed into
such a mess of unbearable 'hate mails'. Another member wrote that (s)he
considered unsubscribing because of all that 'scrap' that prevented the
exchange of reasonable, informative and (why not!) sometimes funny
contributions. I asked her/him not to unsubscribe because I was sure it
would get better soon. Please, do not disappoint me!

> we are members of a rare, select group, brought together
> by our love, dedication, and commitment ...

I don't quite agree. I would not say that we are members of a rare,
select group but rather that our dedication and commitment to meteorites

is of a rare and exotic kind. Before I really started collecting
meteorites, I went hunting agates, amethysts, and quartz druses in our
German quarries and I have got quite a few spectacular specimens - some
of which almost cost me my life. When I left the mineral community and
proudly showed them my first meteorites, they looked at me dumfoundedly
and asked if I really thought 'these ugly pieces of rusty iron and
weathered stones' could really compare with the beautiful magnificence
of my mineral collection.

> not the price tag placed on items ...

This is a delicate part of the whole affair. I will have to pay $20/g
for my 12 gram Portales specimen which is more than I get as a summer
holiday gratification (proper word?) but, of course, as Michael
Cottingham or Mike Farmer have described so fittingly, they risk a lot
(time, accidents, rattlesnakes, private life), financial losses and so
on, that the price tag as such cannot be the only directive.

What I do despise - is verbal accusation, acrimonies and name calling on

the List. What keeps me surprised is the fact that the same people are
so very kind and friendly in other contexts (cp. Julia's post some time
ago about the dangers of this electronic medium). You don't know what I
mean - OK, so let me give you an example: 12th of May was my 53rd
birthday and I got my wife's permission to order a meteorite that would
be her birthday present. I did what I was told to do [ :-) ] and was so
very much surprised to receive my UDEI STATION specimen and two (!) more

meteorites for free as a birthday present by ...

> the awe-inspiring journey both of our mind to the outermost
> reaches of the universe and inward to the core of our very being.

Yes, there is more to it than just price tags. Allende CAIs lead us to
the fringes of our solar system, to the time when a supernova explosion
triggered the processes that led to all of us being here and exchanging
emails from Japan to the U.S.A., from Germany to the Hot Islands of
Spain, from Alaska to Argentina and Brazil.

I don't know if meteorites touch the core of my very being - I do know I

love them, I touch them, I look at them, I fondle them and just like Jim

and lots of others I stroke and pat them.

> It is not an escape from reality ...

No meteorites are not an escape from reality but a comfort and good
'jocund company' when you let your 'thoughts wander lonely as a cloud' -

at such a moment, even meteorites, those messengers from space can
become 'the bliss of solitude'.

> not as individual greed mongers, but as intelligent, concerned
citizens ...

I can hear Jean Jacques Rousseau here: Back to Nature or in our case
Back to Honesty, Friendship and Sincerity (to whom it concerns ...)

> ... in the interest of keeping prices down ...the treasure end of
> it ...will have to take a back seat with the public, while our
> scientific connection must be in the fore.

I don't really know if the general public is really that much aware of
that exotic bunch of meteorite collectors out there. Most people don't
even know what meteorites are and their first guess may be that it has
got something to do with the skill and science of predicting the

> That we are a close knit 'organization', if you will, is paramount.

Let us prove it! The ideals behind the Fourth of July Celebrations in
the U.S.A. should be a reminder! How excited I was as a teenage high
school student when I first heard about the ideals of the American War
of Independence, General Washington, the Prussian officer Steuben and
the French aristocrat Lafayette.

> Many of us are friends. That should show.

Even friends argue sometimes and in front of other people. But there is
a difference between arguing, debating, quarreling on the one hand, and
accusing someone and even mentioning his name on the other hand. This
should be private because I will never know if Mr. or Mrs. XYZ has or
has not paid his or her meteorite specimen and even if he or she has
not, I won't be in a position to decide what is true and what is a lie.

> We should never argue in front of people.

We are not arguing in front of (other) people - we are arguing  a m o n
g each other. We are destroying the quality of this List. We are
willingly or unwillingly expelling those who are members of this List (=

Family) just like we are.

It is high time now to say THANK YOU TO  A R T!. He has heard it before
but it is time to let him know once more!!!

> > Many of us are friends.

I've made many a precious friend here on this List and have exchanged
emails and ideas and thoughts and feelings and information, and  ...


> Bad impressions are difficult to overcome and people talk.

... and write!

> We must treat the fellow collector as if ...

she or he was a dear friend and a family  (= List) member and not
someone to tread on, slap around (James Tobin's words) or beat up on!

And I miss all of you - those who unsubscribed as well as those who
'were' unsubscribed! Come back, re-integrate, and let us be ONE BIG

Best regards and good night because it is late here,


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