BAJR Federation Archaeology

Full Version: Classic mistakes when first starting to dig
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Here's a thread to go along side the funniest context sheets;this is for stories of the total cock-ups we all make when first starting to dig:
i dug my very first skeleton back in 85 and was left to myself to get on with it,by 3pm i had finished it and called over the supervisor to see how well i had done,he complimented me on a job very well done and noticed that i had a criminals burial-"how can you tell that just by looking at the bones?" asked me,"he's had his hands and feet chopped of" says he,me then holding up the finds tray says "oh is that what these little bones are?" D'oh. The polite translation of what he then said was "you silly person-don't do that again"
I'm prety certain there must be loads of such tales of woe just waiting to be told,[:I]
Woe was me on the very first feature I ever stuck my trowel in. But I like to think it wasn't really my fault...

I was pointed to a mark on a chalk surface and asked to half-section it. Sundry site supervisors gave their varying opinions as my digging progressed. It was a rubbish pit to start with. Stuffed with finds. Very interesting.

Five inches down and no finds; there was vague excitement that I could be onto a beaker burial.

Hole a bit deeper and much wider, still no finds. Ho hum, probably just a periglacial crack.

Then the person in front of me nearly fell in as they worked. Unfortunately, it turned out to be part of an Anglo Saxon grave that they were outlining, but we weren't supposed to be excavating.

When I came back to site the next day, said hole had been quietly backfilled and was never mentioned again.
soon as I get back to a big boy computer.. I will be joining in with self humiliation ...:face-thinks:.... am in barcelona just now... sadly missing man u fans being beaten sensless by rather gruff looking spanish polis. jus kidding....

keep this thread going... bout time we had some fun! luv em both.

"No job worth doing was ever done on time or under budget.."
Recalling mercenaries post in the other thread about an old lag excavating his shadow, I remember on my second ever dig, having to be gently restrained from enthusiastically laying into what looked like a wonderful square black pit, but was infact the shadow from the garden shed in the garden next to the site. Mind you, I wasn't the one who'd put it on the pre ex plan. Big Grin
I remember a friend who when working on his first excavation was told by the site director that Roman glass was softer than modern glass and would not cut you. Needless to say, he tried it out and spent the next four hours in casualty.
In days of yore when the world was young...(actually the last day of my very first site).We had just finished cleaning the site for our final lot of photo's and I was in the cabin writing up a few sheets,when some-one passing the window said "turn the tap on",seeing the hose still hooked to the tap i assumed they had some more tools to wash so i duly turned the tap on.After about 20mins the Sup came back and lost his rag big time-"what silly person turned the tap on?",not thinking anything of it i poked my head out the door and said "i did, why is there some-thing wrong?" oh yes,the other end of the hose was hanging in the trench-and i was actually told "don't turn the tap on".The whole trench was under about 2foot of water! Oh crap!
How i manage to stay in archaeology after those first few months is still a mystery![:0]
My second ever dig involved excavating in the middle of summer in central Spain. The soil was baked solid, and I found to my embarrassment that the lovely soft sandstone bedrock was more yielding to a swung pickaxe than the soil above it! Still, I did get a nice tan, and the fieldwork finished at 1pm.
Biggest mistake: believing my supervisor when he said a scatter of bones was important - and that they absolutely hadn't been buried after the night before's barbecue!

...and some time later when a PO... oops... waterpipe, what waterpipe
Mine would have to be stabbing self in forearm with reasonably new, sharp trowel while hacking through a rather tough lot of clay. It unexpectedly went through the clay and continued on toward my arm - no bleeding, but immense bruising. Children, don't do this.
Embarrassing but true .. and again... silly people should not try to replicate this experiment ..

certain drugs do not make you draw faster !
other forms of narcotics do not help you to 'see' the colours of the section more clearly!

They do however get you thrown off site and warned never ever to try that again... [:I]B)

Also on a site in Scotland... sent a lovely new digger to find a spare bubble for the line level.. as this one was broken.. (or given a shake before showing her it) and there was a packet of bubbles in the site hut (about a mile away) teee... heeee.. and she actually did go for the packet of bubbles.


"No job worth doing was ever done on time or under budget.."
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