On Slayer and Lewis Binford….

Last night, while completing what I hope are the last edits to my dissertation, I stumbled across this…

Two twelve year old girls interviewing Tom Araya of Slayer.

Yes. You read that right. Slayer.

This has to be one of the best band interviews ever. My favorite part is when one of the girls asked him to name all of the Spice Girls.

The singer of “Raining Blood” and “Angel of Death” can name some of the Spice Girls.

This interview is pretty amazing because 1) it’s random and 2) the girls aren’t trying to be cool. They’re just asking fun questions.

This got me to thinking: What are some fun questions I would ask some of the heavy hitters in archaeology?

First, I would ask Lewis Binford how long it took him to make his forager/collector graphics. I believe he drafted all of these graphs out by hand on a drafting table. This must have taken forever, and I wonder if he enjoyed doing that more than writing the actual articles.


Second, I would ask V. Gordon Childe what he thought about his style. Because, if he were alive today, his hipster game would be STRONG.


How about you? What would be a silly question that you would ask a famous archaeologist?

SAA 2014 Highlights

Austin, TX -- Scene of most recent archaeo-gathering

Austin, TX — Scene of most recent archaeo-gathering

Last week, many of our SEAC Underground contributors were in Austin for the annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology. To my infinite sadness, I was not among them (though, on the plus side, I got to volunteer on the Cane River Archaeological Project instead, taking advantage of the kind of perfect spring weather that I am fairly convinced only exists in the Blue Ridge Mountains). But, to my infinite gladness, archaeologists harnessed the power of social media, so I was able to follow along with some sessions from many many miles away. Thanks to everyone who tweeted away and tagged the heck out of #SAA2014, #southeastarch, and (most endearingly) #bigdirty.

Now that you’re back, anyone want to elaborate on your favorite paper/poster/session? What really stood out to you, and what do this year’s SAAs tell us about current and future directions in archaeology, especially in the Southeast? Please post in the comments!

And, if you are looking for some reading material, take a gander at Blogging Archaeology, a free e-book that debuted at an SAA session on blogging in archaeology. We at SEAC Underground will be taking a close look at this as we strategize the evolution of this blog in the coming months. Thanks to Doug Rocks-Macqueen, Chris Webster, and all the contributors for giving us so much to think about!

Blogging Archaeology e-book = rad

Blogging Archaeology e-book = rad


Images from Wikimedia Commons, Doug’s Archaeology.

Live, on Twitter… SEAC Underground!

Friends, Southeasternists, Countrypeeps,

Per the previous post, we’ve now got our own Twitter “handle” (at least, I think we do… I’m barely sure what a “handle” is, but I think it means “account”). We’d also like to encourage any fellow Twitter/Facebook/social media-users to embrace the hashtag #southeastarch for the sharing of tweets, links, etc. that fit the bill of interest.

SO! Please find and follow us on Twitter at @SEACundergound — there, we’ll be posting links to our own blog updates, as well as links to other news stories, other blogs, etc., relevant to theory, method, and practice in Southeastern archaeology. Keep coming back to the WordPress site for our full length ramblings on the state of theory in the field, ethical implications of archaeological research, and everyone’s favorite rock jocks.

Mississippian panther pot serving as our current Twitter photo. Truly, this is an awesome pot. #catsforever

Mississippian panther pot serving as our current Twitter photo. Truly, this is an awesome pot. #catsforever

For those of you who may just be discovering our little online project, here’s the 411 from our “About” page:

“This blog first started as a series of conversations between graduate students who were just simply interested in what others were doing. Those extended conversations then became the catalyst for a SEAC symposium, which was organized almost entirely using a group Facebook page. There, we posted abstracts, solicited ideas for who to invite as discussants, and shared comments and papers relevant to our research. After the symposium was over, we again polled our cadre of grad students to see what we wanted to do next. A common request was for some sort of online presence, and thus the idea for this blog was born.”

I should emphasize here that SEAC Underground is not officially affiliated with SEAC (the Southeastern Archaeological Conference), beyond the fact that I’m pretty sure all of our regular contributors are members. In other words, the opinions expressed on our blog and on Twitter don’t necessarily reflect the views of the wider organization. Instead, this is a clearinghouse of what we find interesting, what is distracting us from finishing our dissertations, and what appears to be generally going down in southeastern archaeology.

If/when you find us in the Twitterverse, you’ll note that our current profile includes two photos that, in my mind, capture some of the awesomeness of Southeastern archaeology. As for their attribution, the cover photo was snapped by me on  truly absurd roadtrip from Ann Arbor, Michigan to Baton Rouge, Lousiana for the SEAC meeting in 2012.

Guess that mound!

Guess that mound!

Meanwhile, our current profile pic (shown above) comes from Wikimedia Commons, and shows a “ceramic of the Underwater Panther, from the Mississippian culture, 1400 – 1600, found in Rose Mound, Cross County, Arkansas, US. From the Smithsonian Museum of the American Indian, New York.” No one should be remotely surprised that I chose a cat-like artifact for this picture. That said, if you have better ideas, send them our way (post them on Twitter, or in the comments, or something!), and if they are (1) awesome and (2) have a proper attribution, we can switch it up!

And, in the meantime follow us! And tag #southeastarch! The SEAC meeting only comes once a year, but thanks to the interwebs, and blogs, and Twitter, we can keep the archaeo-fun going all year round. Join the party!

So, everyone…shall we hashtag?

Here lately, I’ve been listening to a lot of stuff from Chance the Rapper, and in his song “Juice” he says:

Hash tag it, get mentions for it
Make you love it, get it trending more

(Warning: lyrics include questionable language, references to drug use, and a dig at the LA Lakers. If this bothers you and/0r if you own a Kobe Bryant jersey, don’t click on it.)

This line caught my attention, because it’s a direct reference to the power of social networking sites and how hash tags have become such a thing that it has invaded the lexicon of young hip-hop artists. (Typing that sentence made me feel old).

Since most of the traffic for this blog has been through Facebook, we haven’t needed to really use hashtags. However, Alice has began posting updates on the blog through her Twitter account, and we’re starting to get more and more traffic from there. This got me to thinking that maybe we should have a Southeastern Archaeology hashtag to help reference anything going on, from important stuff to funny remarks.

Somewhat similar to Twitter is Instagram, which is a social media site for just sharing pictures and short video clips. For example, here’s mine, from which you can deduce from the many pictures of my dog that I live an exciting life. Similar to Twitter, it makes use of the hash-tag. Considering that a lot of folks are gearing up for summer fieldwork, our own hash tag might be a way to simply click a button and see Southeastern Archaeology fieldwork photos from everyone who felt like sharing.

So, what should it be? #seacug? #southeasternarchaeology?

Tell me us what you think in the comment section. Also, if you have Twitter or Instagram and want to share your username with the like-minded masses, drop that in the comment section, too.