Writing | Rage | The Edmore Snyders

Stacey Dunlop tries her very best to keep her rage under control so she can complete her parole and return to her derailed life researching 17,000-year-old cave paintings in France. Of course it won't be easy...

Story Origins

The Edmore Snyders

This story is a big what if. A long time ago I did salvage archaeology in Ontario (where a provincial law required developers to have fieldwork conducted on property deemed to have cultural significance). For six years I worked on sites ranging from 10,000-year-old stone tool clusters to 500-year-old pre-contact villages, including a few Archaic hunting camps, some historic buildings, and even a handful of human burials. For the most part, the work was utterly fascinating. However, encountering an amateur pot-hunter's extensive collection could be quite disturbing--while their artifacts were cool and the collector was typically earnest, if the provenances hadn't been recorded properly, a lot of the artifacts' significance was lost.

It's within this setting of salvage archaeology that "The Edmore Snyders" is set and I started playing my what if games. What if the person charged with cleaning and restoring delicate artifacts has anger management issues and is known for destroying things? What if her co-worker is a practical joker who likes to passively-aggressively torment her? What if something were to happen to the artifacts? While this story is fiction and is not based on true events, I will admit the practical jokes Paul plays on Stacey do have historical antecedents--I have seen spray-painted trowels, canteens cocooned in caution tape, as well as archaeologists' boots tied together while they were sleeping in the work van.

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