Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Field Museum (Part 3 of 4): Birthday and the Burgess Shale Screen.

When we woke up in the museum after Dozin' with the Dinos, I quickly looked around again in Evolving Planet. Then we went back to the hotel to celebrate my birthday.

Stephen brought me a birthday cake with a spotted lagoon jellyfish and a sea nettle jellyfish on it. I got some presents, like this and this from my parents, this from Stephen, and this from Dave. Then we went back to the Field Museum. 

There's a Burgess Shale video with three screens in Evolving Planet that makes it seem like the creatures are in a huge aquarium. On our first night at the museum, the screen wasn't on and I was very disappointed. We thought it might be broken because somebody told us that. But when we went back the next day it was on! 

Here is Pikaia swimming past. It happens to be about to swim over some Ottoia burrows. 

For some reason we didn't take a video of the screen, but it was really cool. Here is Opabinia (in the lower left corner) and Wiwaxia (in the middle). 

I thought the Burgess Shale screen was really cool, and my two favorite parts where when the Anomalocaris chased all the trilobites and got one, and when the Opabinia tried to catch an Ottoia. It finally caught one, but lost its grip and the worm quickly went back into its burrow. 

Here's a picture of an Ottoia coming out of its burrow in the middle of the screen. It's blurred because it was moving so fast. It went back in as fast as it came out.

This picture is really cool, and not to mention the quote from Charles Darwin is amazing. 

Stephen took us to SushiSamba and it was great. I had sushi for the first time. I got octopus and freshwater eel and I loved it. I also had tuna, striped bass, and crab. I wanted to get sea urchin but they didn't have it that day. 

Sushi platter.

Freshwater eel. 

We went to see "The Bean," which is really called Cloud Gate. It's a giant stainless steel sculpture that's about as old as me. It was designed by Anish Kapoor and I thought it was really cool. The night we were there there was a light show, and I was jumping on the lights. The lights were reflecting off The Bean and The Bean was reflecting the lights of the city and all the people. You could see Chicago just by looking at The Bean. 

Here I'm underneath The Bean and Stephen is holding me up so I can see my reflection at the top of The Bean. 

Behind me and Kayla is a big sculpture made of glass blocks with lights inside. On the sculpture there was a face and it was actually moving. In the summertime, Stephen said the face squirts water out of its mouth, and people can play in it. That's kind of cool, and I think a sculpture with a moving face is kind of weirdly hilarious. 

Thanks so much to Stephen, Kayla, and Dave for traveling to meet us in Chicago. I had an awesome birthday. I like Chicago better than where I live!

Next up:

Part 4 of 4: Bonus day at Shedd Aquarium!

A million thanks to: Paul Mayer, Jane Hanna, University of Chicago Secular Student Alliance, Stephen & Kayla & Greta, Casey, Mike, Dave Monroe, PZ Myers, and the 72 incredible people who pitched in to help fund our trip to the Field Museum.


  1. Art, you're the Sheldon Cooper of prehistoric life.

    1. Art and Sheldon are pretty much the same person.

  2. What about the swordfish? What about The Shedd Aquarium? I wish I'd've known your mom's phone cold record video, I miht have thought to suggest it @ the Burgess Shale display. And I STILL say, squid sushi (ika). Thanks again, Art!

    1. We shuffled up the narrative a bit. It's like The Unfortunates.

      Art did, in fact, eat swordfish over the weekend, but there are no photos of that event. Had photos of the rest of the birthday celebration, used those.

      And note the end of this post:

      Next up: Part 4 of 4: Bonus day at Shedd Aquarium!

  3. Oh, Art, don't you want one of those projected displays in your room!!?! WOW, that was amazing! It was like seeing your blog come to life....

    My favorite picture is your huge smile with Kayla! Looking forward to the next post about Shedd. It's been too long since Mrs. J's last trip....

  4. Burgess Shale Animation