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Uphill Both Ways

Volume 9 - Boston 1956


a configuration just like a bullet. Absolutely tubular.

The only conclusion they could reach, which is not favorable to Dr. X , was that Dr. X knew what he was doing, and had intended to do what he did. That wasn’t nice of him. The only reason they could come up with the explain this was expediency. Dr. X wasn’t stupid, nor was he malicious. He was a man of integrity normally. He must have been in a rush to get a project finished? If he had taken time to model the skull so that this was properly incorporated into the external planes and surfaces, the skull would have been much more complex as you can see. Was he up against a deadline? Or else he was just plain lazy? And academically and intellectually dishonest? I don’t think so. I personally think it was expediency, a lack of resources or time or both. There was no way to determine. Nor did it ultimately matter. The skull was what it was and it had to be remedied.

The really interesting consequence of re-constructing the skull with this segment in its proper place was how it altered the internal anatomy of the skull. Go back to the second photo above of dad in the jaws and look to the right of him. Find the highest part of the ridge and then look down a bit and you see a hole running through the center of the skull. That isn’t even present in Dr. X’s reconstruction. Tsk tsk.

Emergency Room Trip

During the process of rehabilitating the skull, Dad hired Dick and me to work for him in the lab on Saturdays. We were common laborers which is all we were suited to be as teenagers. I carried stuff, and swept and handed tools and so on. Pay was 50 cents an hour, not bad for that era. I went in to MCZ with dad to work which was a good thing. He decided one fine day to have me do some of the rough work on this skull. That was fine with me.

Dad gave me a large heavy electric drill to use because the plaster was too thick and hard for a standard home-model. The drill must have weighed 15 pounds and had a shiny silver housing. Instead of the usual small pistol-grip where the trigger was located, the trigger was on the body beneath the heavy-duty handle that stuck out the end. In addition to the huge handle on the back, two one-inch thick, 6-inch long handles had been screwed into the body about half way down. That allowed me to hold the drill securely with two hands rather than one hand.

I was assigned to go after the whole skull to drill out the old plaster, hunting for any other fragments of bone. The bit that I used for this job was not the tubular twist-bits you usually associate with drills. This one was actually a wood bit.

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