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Re: Monahans garbage

In a message dated 7/24/98 3:53:30 PM Central Daylight Time, trandall@mhv.net
   I find the last sentence uncalled for. Guess he wants to only deal with
rich folks. I'll take my 2 nickels elsewhere, no problem. With an attitude
such as that one he doesn't deserve my meager money and probably could care


Tom and list,

Tom, my file cabinet reveals that you have only made one post in the last
month, and it was not about the auction process.  I have been off the list for
over a month and I do not remember a post being forwarded to me regarding you
having a problem with the auction.  So I would assume you are not to be
considered as one of those who made a big stink.  But even if you were, and I
didn't know about it since you did not write me directly, you still don't need
to feel insulted.  That was not what I intended to do.

If you didn't notice, that was a quote in a newspaper attributed to me from a
reporter.  I talked with the reporter for probably an hour and he took
everything I said and scrunched it into that one paragraph cutting out about
59 minutes and 45 seconds of everything else I said.

My whole intent was not to talk about how rich or poor people are.  I am fully
aware that the largest portion of the meteorite world collects ~$20 pieces,
not $20,000 pieces. The reporter was asking me about the "stink" that was
being raised on the list.  I said that it was funny to me that if it really
bothered them that much, I would have figured they would have contacted me
privately before going public with their concerns.  I told him that some
people had emailed or called me asking about the change in the auction.  I
told him that I felt I had explained it to THOSE people's satisfaction.  

I said, however, that not one of the people making the biggest stink has
contacted me directly.  I went on to say that as far as I knew EVERYONE making
these posts to the Internet were very well aware of who I was and how to reach
me, but they chose to go to the list BEFORE asking me.  I then complemented
him on the fact that at least he was willing to talk to me BEFORE he wrote
something in public!

I told him that I had been kicked off the list so I was not allowed by the
owner of the list to respond publicly.  But when someone would forward one of
the complaint posts from the list to me, I would attempt to contact the writer
directly to sort this out.  

I told him that someone told me that "they're like the hyenas of the meteorite
community.  One starts to howl, then another starts to howl and it is like
they can't control themselves."  He liked that quote so well that he gave me
credit for it and printed it.  Those words came out of my mouth, but not in
the context that he wrote them.

Later in the interview I pointed out that most of the people who seemed upset
with the fact that my clients had retained naturalhistoryauction.com AND who
were expressing their emotions online rather than contacting me directly were
not planning on bidding on the rock anyway!  I told him that out of the
millions of people that know about the meteorite and even out of the thousands
of people who make up the "Meteoritical Community" only a small portion are on
the list and even fewer are saying anything bad publicly and even fewer had
contacted me directly.

About the "two nickels to rub together" comment, it was said as a figure of
speech, not to be taken literally.  I was saying that the rock will sell for
at least $20,000 and possibly much higher.  And that as far as I knew, the
people complaining on the list had no plans of bidding.  I should have said
that "they don't have two $10,000 bills to rub together.  And that is not an
insult to those of you don't have $20,000 extra cash laying around.  I don't
have that much extra cash so who am I criticize others in the same boat?

And if I knew he was going to pull those "sound bites" together in such a way,
I would not have said them at all.  My whole context of all those statements
to him was that there are many more dealers in the meteorite world than the
one or two complaining on the list and that there are many more collectors in
the world other than the relatively few collectors that are complaining on the

I did tell him "It is like having an event with a stadium full of people, with
a handful of protesters outside..." and before I could finish, he interrupted
and said "Yes I know, the media focuses in on the few protesters!"  I replied
"You said that, not me."  And we both got a chuckle out of it.  But the truth
is, there are a lot MORE people in the community (not in the stadium and not
in the protesters group) who couldn't care less about it ALL, such is this
topic in the Meteorite Community.

I told him that out of over 2,200 post cards that were sent out, that I only
had one or two people concerned enough about the changes to write or call me
personally.  I told him that in the whole scope of things it doesn't seem to
that big of a deal or more people would have asked me about it.  

Should I apologize for the reporter doing what he did, or what his editor did?
If so, I am sorry.  Probably what I should have said when the reporter called
was "No Comment" then hung up.  But then who knows what would have been

Hey guys, I just try to hit the pitches that are thrown to me.  I am sorry if
anyone gets hit by a foul ball.  That was not my intention.

Steve Arnold

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