temporus: (temple)
( Jan. 4th, 2008 07:31 pm)

Today I took a day off work, and with my Lovely Wife, and Little Man headed into NYC to visit the American Museum of Natural History.  They've had an exhibit, called Mythic Creatures, and it was running there until this Sunday.  Well, with this weekend practically booked solid, today was our only shot to see it before the exhibit moved on to another site.  (I think it's going to Chicago next.)

We had a fun time.  We even got to meet up with one of my wfie's good friends who lives in the city, which was just an added bonus since we haven't been getting out that way as much as we used to.

The exhibit itself was interesting, though for me it was kind of generic.  I'm a fantasist, and I devour mythology.  I think within the past three years I've researched well over half the entities contained within the exhibit on my own.  Notable exceptions are the Unicorn and the Phoenix.  That aside, the individual items were fun to observe.  (Unfortunately cameras were not allowed in the exhibit, and they actually paid attention enough that I couldn't snap off any pictures.)   Much to my disappointment and not a little frustration, there were way too many people.  They only opened doors to the exhibit once an hour on the half hour, and you had to pick which viewing you were going to see.  So, we waited on a long enough line to feel like an amusement park before shuffling into the room.  There was a guide, who gave a tour, but there were so many people, and we were so far away from her, that we couldn't hear a damn thing she said.  That was frustrating, because getting to hear a guide and maybe ask a question or two would have been nice.

So okay, I am not the average person they expect to show up for this exhibit.  I'm sure most of the people going in hadn't all ready heard of Gigantopithecus, nor had only three months prior spent a whole day reading up on Saint George and the origins of his legend.   The exhibit, however, was a success to me because we got to see the amazement and wonder on my son's face as he walked among giant statutes of dragons.  Got to touch things like unicorn horns, or giant's bones.  He absolutely adored the exhibit.  Here, my wife and I were worried he was just going to be a total fuss the entire time.  We even tried to rock him to sleep in the stroller first, figuring that he'd just be bored.   I'm glad we failed, because when he first laid eyes on that dragon, they lit up with such joy I can't imagine not having shared the experience with him.  All told, he made it through a good three and a half hours at the museum before finally hitting the wall and needing to get out of there.

If this is something you'd be interested in seeing, there's still two days left.   I'm probably a harsh critic, because mythic creatures are a bit of passion for me.  (Funny how that works in with being a fantasy writer.)    But the overall presentation was good, and ran a nice gamut of inspirations and ideas from around the world.   Of course, if it were up to me, there'd be a museum the size of the AMNH for mythic creatures, the way this one is for Natural History.  (Hmmm...The American Museum of Unnatural History...perhaps I've got a story idea in the making.)  The museum itself is a wonder, a true national treasure, and is worth visiting just because.  I can't wait to go again when the Little Man is a bit older, and his curiosity is at a different level than it is now.  That's something to look forward to.

temporus: (temple)
( Jan. 4th, 2008 07:31 pm)

Today I took a day off work, and with my Lovely Wife, and Little Man headed into NYC to visit the American Museum of Natural History.  They've had an exhibit, called Mythic Creatures, and it was running there until this Sunday.  Well, with this weekend practically booked solid, today was our only shot to see it before the exhibit moved on to another site.  (I think it's going to Chicago next.)

We had a fun time.  We even got to meet up with one of my wfie's good friends who lives in the city, which was just an added bonus since we haven't been getting out that way as much as we used to.

The exhibit itself was interesting, though for me it was kind of generic.  I'm a fantasist, and I devour mythology.  I think within the past three years I've researched well over half the entities contained within the exhibit on my own.  Notable exceptions are the Unicorn and the Phoenix.  That aside, the individual items were fun to observe.  (Unfortunately cameras were not allowed in the exhibit, and they actually paid attention enough that I couldn't snap off any pictures.)   Much to my disappointment and not a little frustration, there were way too many people.  They only opened doors to the exhibit once an hour on the half hour, and you had to pick which viewing you were going to see.  So, we waited on a long enough line to feel like an amusement park before shuffling into the room.  There was a guide, who gave a tour, but there were so many people, and we were so far away from her, that we couldn't hear a damn thing she said.  That was frustrating, because getting to hear a guide and maybe ask a question or two would have been nice.

So okay, I am not the average person they expect to show up for this exhibit.  I'm sure most of the people going in hadn't all ready heard of Gigantopithecus, nor had only three months prior spent a whole day reading up on Saint George and the origins of his legend.   The exhibit, however, was a success to me because we got to see the amazement and wonder on my son's face as he walked among giant statutes of dragons.  Got to touch things like unicorn horns, or giant's bones.  He absolutely adored the exhibit.  Here, my wife and I were worried he was just going to be a total fuss the entire time.  We even tried to rock him to sleep in the stroller first, figuring that he'd just be bored.   I'm glad we failed, because when he first laid eyes on that dragon, they lit up with such joy I can't imagine not having shared the experience with him.  All told, he made it through a good three and a half hours at the museum before finally hitting the wall and needing to get out of there.

If this is something you'd be interested in seeing, there's still two days left.   I'm probably a harsh critic, because mythic creatures are a bit of passion for me.  (Funny how that works in with being a fantasy writer.)    But the overall presentation was good, and ran a nice gamut of inspirations and ideas from around the world.   Of course, if it were up to me, there'd be a museum the size of the AMNH for mythic creatures, the way this one is for Natural History.  (Hmmm...The American Museum of Unnatural History...perhaps I've got a story idea in the making.)  The museum itself is a wonder, a true national treasure, and is worth visiting just because.  I can't wait to go again when the Little Man is a bit older, and his curiosity is at a different level than it is now.  That's something to look forward to.

.

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