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Thursday, 15 September 2016

Both sides of the bluestone quarry debate


Here we are -- the NPA has just put these posters up, relating to the two talks next week.  Roll up, folks, for the fun and games!  As far as I am concerned, what the punters will get is straight-down-the-line observations and parsimonious interpretations of the evidence on the ground.....

18 comments:

TonyH said...

If you go to BOTH events, you'll be able to say, like Joni Mitchell did all those years ago, in the late '60s, when I was in Dr Brian John's Personal Tutor Group studying Geography including geomorphology at Durham University:-

"I've looked at life from both sides now,
From win and lose, and still somehow
It's life's illusions I recall
I never did know love at all"

Or, to quote from the Moody Blues:-


"Which is real, and which is an illusion?"

Which of these gents has most integrity, which is putting ALL his cards on the table when it comes to quarries? - come along, or read up the reports on this Blog - then YOU choose.

cysgodycastell said...

When I bought tickets from Castell Henllys a fortnight ago for both evenings they were writing down names of the ticket buyers. One sheet for each, sadly MPP was seemingly outselling your goodself at that time.

It is a pity that that there couldn't be more of a head to head debate. That certainly would be worth the £3.50 ticket price!

BRIAN JOHN said...

I'm not in a competition here. Of course MPP will put more bums on seats than I will -- this is his annual lecture in these parts, and he has a great following of people who love his fantastical tales and who want to hear the latest episode. I will bore the pants off people instead, and just give them the facts. Science is not a spectator sport.

BRIAN JOHN said...

Maybe there will be a proper debate at Rhosygilwen some time over the winter. I was up for it last winter, but Glen Peters could not get any response from MPP when he sent messages. But now apparently MPP has said he is prepared to do it. Watch this space.....

TonyH said...

I'll believe THAT when it happens, Brian. Parker Pearson is to important Preseli bluestone archaeology what Van Daniken WAS to the Nasca Lines - he's of the New Age persuasion, and he has almost reached his expiry date when it comes to any % of plausibility.

"Look into my eyes, look into my eyes...". My advice is, don't.

chris johnson said...

Goodness. Probably he found something.

Do you know anything about the current dig?

BRIAN JOHN said...

I doubt very much that they have found anything interesting, Chris, except maybe the remains of a Bronze Age burial site and maybe the odd standing stone socket. I haven't got any direct info from any of the diggers. Because Mike is giving two talks (there is another one on the same night as mine, at the Bluestone Brewery, which uses his stuff with great gusto in its marketing), that does not mean there is anything significant to announce. Last year there wasn't anything significant either -- but that did not stop Mike from offering his talks......

If you ask me to hazard a guess, I suspect that this year's theme is not going to be quarries at all. Instead, it's going to be that Preseli was a great Neolithic / Bronze age cultural centre, which would give MPP all the justification he needs in order to argue that there was a sufficient motivation for (a) quarrying, and (b) for humping great loads of ancestor stones all the way along the A40 road to Wiltshire. Same old argument -- if they had wanted to do it, they probably had the capacity to do it, and so they probably did it. With such a line of thought, who needs evidence?

TonyH said...

I have it from an impeccable source - Alexandria Library no less! - that Tarmac, far from being an invention of the relatively recent Past, actually came into being on highly advanced Orkney long, long ago. It then was brought to Preseli by an enterprising Scotsman named McAdam, who sold the Patent to the obviously very advanced local Tribe, who were part Irish and part proto - Welsh, round about the Time Bluestone became the Sought - After - Thing. The rest is Pre - History and so it is at this point I will hand you over to Mike "I Wanna Tell You A Story" Parker Pearson........Mike!

Evergreen said...

I predict MPP will win by knockout in the 3rd round.

When is the weigh in?

AG said...

"If they had wanted to do it, they probably had the capacity to do it, and so they probably did it. With such a line of thought, who needs evidence?"

It's the only evidence Atkinson had and he did alright out of it?

BRIAN JOHN said...

Come now, Evergreen. We are already in the sixth round, and we geomorphologists are far ahead on points. Evidence galore, none of which has been countered. Which match are you watching?

BRIAN JOHN said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BRIAN JOHN said...

Nothing too personal please, folks. I have nothing at all against MPP, who seems to be a perfectly pleasant fellow. It's just his methods of working, and his tendency to conjure up fantastical tales on the basis of zero evidence that I have a problem with. That is purely an academic standards issue, to do with that old-fashioned thing called scholarship.

Evergreen said...

"Come now, Evergreen. We are already in the sixth round, and we geomorphologists are far ahead on points. Evidence galore, none of which has been countered. Which match are you watching?"

We've had the thriller in manila, the rumble in the jungle, now.. the quarrel near..erm, croswell.

Wish I could be there for both nights!

BRIAN JOHN said...

If any of our jolly bloggers will be at the MPP talk on 22nd, we would appreciate a report. Can't be there myself, as I will be in Cardiff for meetings all day, and won't be back till late. I think I can more or less anticipate what will be said, but a few notes would satisfy our enquiring minds.......

TonyH said...

Hope your meetings in Cardiff go well........something in the pipeline? Let us all know eventually.

TonyH said...

Which of these two characters would you buy a used car from? And which of them more appropriately could be described as The Pied Piper of Preseli? Whereas perhaps one of them is best described, by his own admission, as the Parsimonious Preacher??

And why do we NEVER see them in the same room together?


Surely they cannot be the same person? Nah......

Michael said...

Hi Brian,

Well done last night, am looking forward to the 'other view' this evening.

Michael