Welcome to Chasing Sabretooths
Hello everybody! I am starting this blog in order to share events, findings or ideas that seem relevant in this quest to reconstruct the life of the past. The blog’s title relates to what I have been doing for the last few years (decades, already): chasing sabretooths – trying to learn how those animals really looked like, how they moved, how they behaved… chasing ghosts, one could say. You never catch a sabertooth, you may seem a bit closer with every fossil finding, with every new insight into evolution and anatomy. But from the start you know you will never get to know it -not the way you can know a living cat. And if you think you have caught it, then the ghost is gone and all you have is an empty shell (sorry if this sounded a bit too poetic…) So the key to this process is to keep it moving, to keep it dynamic, and always to remind yourself that you really don’t know. I use the sabretooths as a sort of emblem for the more general subject of extinct life, all of it beautiful and all of it worth learning about.
This journey has stops in many, sometimes unlikely places (at least for me). So my posts may relate to any part of the process of reconstructing past life. They may have to do with fossil finds, or with drawing, or with any aspect of modern nature that provides both information and inspiration for this task of recreating the past. I am bad at keeping my activities separate, and I mix art and science all the time in a rather disrespectful manner. Sorry, I don’t see art or science as sacred masters to serve, but as means to an end, and this end is to learn more about the world around us, and to learn how to be a part of it while enjoying the ride. OK, first I sounded poetic and now I’m sounding philosophical, so obviously it is time to end this post… One last word however: don’t expect me to bore you daily with my posts: when I am not too busy, I will likely be feeling too lazy to achieve such a feat. Nonetheless I will try to be here whenever there is something worth telling.
At this point, this blog is nothing but bare bones. Give me some time and I will try to put some flesh on it, as I do with my fossil subjects!.
So welcome and please stay tuned!
PS: I add a piece of eyecandy, a quick working sketch of the skull and soft tissues of the nimarvid sabretooth Hoplophoneus mentalis.