Chapter 36

Prepared by Dowie Gutierrez [074139] Com12 A

The Dig is basically about what Damien and his crew found in their excavation. More on that later.

Anyway, the chapter begins with Cayce waking to a wedge of light. As soon as she gets up from bed, she immediately goes to the bathroom to take a bath. She describes the taps in the shower as "Knockoffs of Kohler." I get a sense that Cayce is a very brand-conscious individual.

Kohler is basically a manufacturing company in Kohler, Wisconsin best known for its plumbing products. It was founded by John Michael Kohler, an Austrian immigrant, in 1873. It is a very popular brand of plumbing products and is known for their modern designs. Here are some images of their products:
ccc15856_cp_crop.jpg and ccc21569.jpg

Moving on, after taking her morning bath, Cayce goes downstairs to have breakfast. She somehow found the food very exotic, as the food served were platters of smoked meats, preserved fish, red caviar, blinis, and the like. Fortunately for her, she found some "normal" food at the far end of the buffet table. She found granola, cornflakes, fresh fruit, juice and coffee.

Blinis, a small light pancake served with melted butter, sour cream, and other garnishes such as caviar, looks like this:

2668674527_64280fcea7.jpg?v=0

Very exotic indeed! :]

After her breakfast, she phones Parkaboy. She's not sure if Parkaboy is already on his way. She thought of calling Sylvie Jeppson to find out but she decided not to since she thought that contacting Blue Ant isn't the wisest thing to do. She didn't want to break the trust Stella had given her. She feels that Parkaboy would understand her but not Boone. Bigend, on the other hand, will probably get her but "in that way of his, in which he seems to somehow understand emotions without ever having partaken of them." With this, I get a sense of how empathetic Bigend can actually be.

Empathy is the intellectual identification with or vicarious experiencing of the feelings, thoughts, or attitudes of another. <http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/empathy>

Here is a comic picture describing empathy:

2492697215_6b7aba6341.jpg?v=0

As the chapter progresses, Cayce remembers what her father had always believed, that there must always be room for coincidence. Win Pollard believed that when there is an absence in coincidence, one is probably into apophenia, the experience of seeing patterns or connections in random or meaningless data. With coincidence, well, you get a better grasp of the real essence or even the threat of one happening in your life. In other words, I believe, you get a clearer perspective on the things that are happening around you.

Moving on, Cayce then slides in the F:F:F CD-ROM and repeats the search about Russia. She came to a thought "what might a very rich, very important Russian be afforded in his own country, or even, perhaps, in hers?" and "what might 'very rich, very important' not be euphemism for, today, when it came to Russians?" With this, we can infer that the Russians might be something very big and dangerous, something like the mafia.

Euphemism is a substitution of a description of something or someone rather than the name, to avoid revealing secret, holy, or sacred names to the uninitiated, or to obscure the identity of the subject of a conversation from potential eavesdroppers. <http://www.reference.com/browse/euphemism>

Here's a video showing euphemism:

After this, Cayce goes to the online Moscow Yellow Pages to find a Pilates studio. Unfortunately, she wasn't able to find any so she decided to just work out in the hotel gym. There, she found an old and overweight Russian running on a treadmill. She also found a boxing mat in the corner of the room and used it for her pilates workouts.

Sample online Moscow YellowPages:

http://moscow.areaconnect.com/

I find it really cool that online yellow pages are actually available nowadays. I've always hated using the thick book-types. Aside from the fact that it's quite heavy, it's not accurate as well since most of the information there actually change almost every year. At least with the online yellow pages, they can be updated very easily. I remember one time I forgot the delivery number of one fastfood chain and guess what i used to get those digits? You guessed it right, the online yellow pages (but the Philippine version in this case http://www.eyp.ph/). Within seconds, I got the delivery number that I needed and eventually, I was able to satisfy my hunger. Now that's very convenient!

Anyway, just for a brief info about Pilates. It is a is a physical fitness system developed in the early 20th century by Joseph Pilates in Germany. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pilates>

Here's a video showing the basic Pilates moves:

When she finishes working out, Cayce felt an urge to go out and walk around town. But she couldn't because she was waiting for Stella's call. When her phone rang, though, it was just Bigend asking where she was. Cayce answered "poole" which Bigend thought was a regular swimming pool. The call Bigend made was just about the conversation Cayce and Boone had. Bigend was just sensing that Cayce and Boone are dating which Cayce denied.

Soon after Bigend's call, Stella finally phoned Cayce about her appointment with Nora. Stella tells Cayce that a car will be arriving after 30 minutes. Cayce immediately goes up her room to change. Before she leaves, though, she checked her e-mail. There was a mail from Damien. He was basically talking about the "thing" they found in the excavation site. It appeared to be Nazi-looking aircraft, called a Stuka. What was intriguing about it is that the plane was in pristine condition and it was even buried underground. Also, the body of the pilot was still there complete with several accessories like a compass and a pistol. Damien had a feeling of disgust, though, as his crewmen and the diggers heartlessly tore apart the corpse like hungry lions fighting for a piece of meat . Nevetheless, he ordered his crew to go on with the filming.

With this, I was quite shocked with the way Damien acted. He felt really bad about what was happening, with the tearing apart of the corpse and everything, but still chose to go on with his project. Sure, he felt disgusted with his crew and the diggers, but I think he should've been disgusted with himself as well for allowing such an incident to occur. But then again, I guess he was just probably being professional and just trying to get the job done. Still, I see a sense of apathy on their part.

A Stuka, also known as the Junkers Ju 87, was a two-seat (pilot and rear gunner) German ground-attack aircraft of World War II. Designed by Hermann Pohlmann, the Stuka first flew in 1935 and made its combat debut in 1936 as part of the Luftwaffe's Condor Legion during the Spanish Civil War. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stuka>

Here's a picture of a Stuka:

Ju_87D-1.jpg

And here's a video of a Stuka in action:

Upon seeing how a Stuka looks like, they really seem very fragile compared to the aircrafts of our time. It makes me wonder how it could be in such a well-preserved state when Damien and his crew found one in the excavation site.

Anyway, the chapter ends as Cayce plans to get her passport from the desk downstairs. Unfortunately, she leaves her room and forgets about it. She, then, went to meet the driver that was sent by Stella and departs.


More Annotations on Chapter 36: The Dig

064114 Com12-G

Trust and Dislocation
I have combined trust and dislocation here because it is somewhat connected to one another.

In the beginning of the chapter, she was disoriented with everything around her. From the Maurice and Filmy edit on the iBook, “after she’d returned from meeting Stella, and experiencing it in some entirely new way that she’s still completely unable to describe or characterize.”

There were several factors she is dislocated: her meeting up with Stella; the fact that she is in another country; the things around her that are quite familiar but not really; and the issue of trust and paranoia.

Although Stella and Cayce met up for the first time from the previous chapter, Stella easily opens up. In an information society, we are both connected and disconnected to each other. It is ironic that Cayce is closer to the people she is not connected to- like Parkaboy and Stella. Here is a link about location, paranoia and trust: It was said here: "Social bonds are much looser in cities than in smaller, rural communities where ready-made, relatively stable support networks exist," says Dr Freeman. "Social isolation, a frequent drawback to urban life, is closely associated with paranoid thoughts. In the UK nearly four times as many people live alone than fifty years ago. Increasing paranoia is certainly one more challenge posed by galloping urbanisation."

The issue of trust in this chapter is rooted in Cayce’s paranoia. Having found out the details of the footage and met with the twin of the maker, there is a high risk involved since people would want to get that information from her. There are a number of instances shown she was paranoid and thought about trusting a person.

“She could phone Slyvie Jepson and find out, but the idea of contacting Blue Ant, right now, does not appeal…”

Here, Cayce does not trust Blue Ant because she is afraid that Blue Ant would find out about the maker and have a deal with them. She promised to Stella that she would conceal the information she had found out so that no one could commoditize it. Moreover it was said in the story, “Stella trusts her.”

She then thought of other people who might get the information she has and who are the people she should not trust. These are Parkaboy, Boone, Bigend, Dorotea, and Baranov. When she opened up a bottle of Russian mineral water, she had thought of Dorotea. “Dorotea had been hired by a Russian from Cyprus, the one listed as the registrant of armaz.ru, a domain that Boone says ahs something to do with the Russian oil industry.” She then becomes paranoid and asks whether those Russians got their hands on Katherine McNally’s notes through her sessions. She figures that this might not the case since Dorotea’s companions in Tokyo were Italian. She then thinks of Baranov, who is a Russian too, but she can’t seem to find the links or the patterns here. This is precisely due to the fact that she is paranoid.

And so, she remembers her father, Win. She remembers that

“there must always be a room for coincidence…When there’s not, you’re probably well into apophenia each thing then perceived as part of an overarching pattern of conspiracy. And while comforting yourself with the symmetry of it all, he’d believe you stood all too real a chance of missing the genuine threat, which was invariably less symmetrical, less perfect…”

Win says that she must be careful of pattern recognition. Sometimes, it just happened. It may not be connected to your life.

Another issue of trust is shown when Bigend called up Cayce. Bigend asked Cayce where she was and lied saying that she is in Poole. Bigend thought she was in a swimming pool. She then corrects him with a lie, by saying that she is in “Poole.” Here, we can see that we can’t trust anything on surface level. We have to dig deeper, at times reading between the lines.

Then she said that she is following something up (Stella and the footage) and she did not say what it is because she fears it will leak out especially on a cell phone. People might have interfered with her line. The issue of trust here not only is with Bigend, but also with technology as well.

Digging Art

Damien and his companions finally finished digging up. They documented this. This documentation reminds me of the Anne Frank webcam. The documentation’s purpose might be both for preservation and for art’s sake. However, I wonder if it really is for preservation because Damien’s companions destroyed the beautifully preserved artifact.

In these days what they have done is very much rampant. This is called looting. Looting is “to seize and carry away by force especially in war or to engage in robbing or plundering especially in war[((loot. (2009). In Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary.
Retrieved March 28, 2009, from http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/loot))].”

Here is an example of looting: Looting in Nineveh.
Although they have preserved it in new media, they have not preserved it physically. In fact there are rules to follow and even debates about conserving art. Conservators are so careful how they would conserve and preserve the art.The artifact is a very important piece of history and yet they have destroyed it.

The Dig reminds me of the movie National Treasure 1 and 2. As I can remember, the treasure in National Treasure was well preserved. However, because they have entered it, it was now destroyed; they were not careful enough. Just like what happened in the dig. It’s a piece of art, a treasure that is delicate. People like Mick and Brian destroyed the artifact.

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