Wednesday, November 19, 2014

NEAS 2014, Finally!

If you can read this, it means I'm awake, & ready to slay some dragons.

Just got back from a casual walk to the lecture room. Incredibly, met Bryant Wood in the parking lot as he was leaving the gym. He gave me permission to announce that IRON I ROYAL JAR-HANDLE IMPRESSIONS HAVE BEEN EXCAVATED AT MAQATIR. Yes, you heard me right: Iron I, not II. Details later. And 9 more chairs were added overnight to my room for a total of 50. Going back now on foot carrying all my stuff instead of driving due to logistics. Thanks to my friends for your prayers!

Dragons officially slain! Only about 30 people in attendance, about the same for Roden & Janeway; Conyers was AWOL. After I concluded, Douglas Petrovich entered with a posse of at least 40 fans, for a total of 70 in the room (seated, standing, & literally on the floor, lining the walls), undoubtedly with more outside the room who couldn't get in. To say that he's popular & captivating would be a gross understatement. Edwin Yamauchi was the only person express a comment to the audience following my lecture. He said he doubts that scarabs were of patriarchal origin. That's a paraphrase; I'll have to review the recordings for his exact words, which he later gave me permission to include in my YouTube video. Speaking of which, I had an extensive personal chat with Brian Janeway afterwards, & he recorded a 7.5-minute answer to a question by "Pithom" (Enapoletus Harding), which will also go to YouTube for all. It appeared that both camcorders worked okay, as well as my voice-recorder, but I'll now transfer the files & head back for Dr. Wood's lecture at 2pm. Here are the stats from my heart-rate monitor I had strapped to my chest: 6:51:27 duration, 2894 calories, 107 bpm average, 151 bpm max, 2:22:57 in-zone. I thirst. It is finished. Thank you, Jesus!

Quick notes while the files transfer: 1) I was so happy to see Dr. Steven Collins arrive & attend my lecture! 2) Dr. Janeway & I bonded, not just over our Biblical archeology interests, but he has also competed in a skyscraper staircase race! How cool is that?!?! 3) It was also nice to meet Dr. Charles Ailing & hear a 15-minute impromptu lecture he gave on late-date-Exodus proponents.

Had a fun time attending all the afternoon lectures, beginning with Dr. Wood, who noted that he recently learned the correct Arabic pronunciation of his excavation site is "MAH-kuh-teer" (similar to Disney mouseketeers) rather than "muh-KAH-ter" (like the 70s TV show, Welcome Back Kotter). Much of what he shared was similar to what he had informed me about during our private meetings, including his plans to research parallels to the 1st scarab his team found in 2013, namely those with breasted/collared falcon-headed, stick-legged (footless) sphinxes, leading to a technically detailed, peer-reviewed journal publication. I had a pleasant surprise when Dr. Steven Sanchez of Emmaus Bible College recognized me & introduced himself. Back in 2008 one of his students, Sarah Lepisto, found an S2U at Ramat Rahel, & provided photos for LRW. By the way, I just finished safely transferring the last of the files captured by my devices last night & today, totaling 13.6Gb! I really can't thank God enough for enabling all those electrons to cooperate for this event! Anyway, Dr. Sanchez then introduced me to Dr. Steven Ortiz of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, who graciously complimented me on LRW & Lv1! (And yes, at one time there were 3 Steven-friends of mine in the same room!) I've been anxiously awaiting news about his renewed excavations at Gezer, & he (again) graciously recorded a short video for me, which (again) I'll get up to YouTube with the others. The big news, however, is that he was able to say that the LMLKs they've excavated will probably not solve the questions caused by Macalister's work. But I'm going to remain optimistic until I can examine the photos when they're formally published. After Dr. Wood, Andrew Blatchley delivered an interesting lecture about "The Iron Chariots of the Canaanites", which he believes were probably figurative rather than literal, which in turn he believes doesn't compromise the integrity of the Bible; & he presented those reasons. Then Ralph Hawkins talked about "The Archaeology of Shiloh and Its Bearing on Joshua 18:1". Then Seth Rodriquez, a church planter, gave a really nice lesson & example on how to use (& why Christian leaders should use) visual media for teaching the Bible, since that's how parishioners are taught most effectively elsewhere (e.g., via entertainment & schools). His lecture title & methodological demonstration were "Spending the Night at the Threshing Floor: Archaeological Insights into the Book of Ruth". In particular, I enjoyed seeing his usage of images from His last slide credited that site as well as Finally, S. Cameron Coyle presented an update on the aforementioned Gezer excavations, with the most interesting find being that of a "4-12-4" game-board, which features 5 geometrically-spaced rosettes. In terms of attendance, there were over 50 people in the room at each one (because some were standing), but only about 40 during the last one. During one of the breaks, Douglas Petrovich returned, & I was thrilled to be able to compliment him. He'll actually be filling in for another absentee lecturer on Friday (11-21-2014) from 2:20-2:50 PM, lecturing on Joseph's chronology. Great day, much more to say, but gotta get ready for another important day at ASOR tomorrow.

P.S. For comparison to this morning, the results from my heart-rate monitor for this afternoon were 3:46:34 duration, (only) 786 calories, 85 bpm average, 137 bpm maximum, 0:13:05 in-zone.

G.M. Grena

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