Saturday, November 10, 2018

One Ring To Dig Them All

IT'S HERE! The Fall Season Premiere of Girls Rock Metal Detecting's SIREN OF THE RINGS. Precious finds, revolutionary war history, unboxing the Garrett Zlink Wireless Kit, and Siren Kimmie detects the ONE RING TO RULE THEM ALL. You wont want to miss this digging adventure packed with silver, rings, relics, history and more. Grab a glass of wine or your favorite libation and get ready to YouTube and Chill with Siren Kimmie! xoxo

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Show Us Your Detecting Assets


I have been told on a few occasions that I am "an asset" to metal detecting, or a good "ambassador" of the hobby.  This is certainly a huge compliment which does not go unappreciated, believe me!  (On the flip side, I was also called a bad influence because someone felt my profile picture was too provocative—So, six of one half dozen of the other.)

This got me to thinking though; what does it mean to be an asset to the hobby of metal detecting?  To me, an asset would be, say--a kick ass set of wireless head phones, a machine that rules out pull tabs, or maybe even a really good sports bra? Something that greatly benefits the detectorist in a tangible way.

Meanwhile, the term ambassador, when taken literally means "spokesperson" or "promoter"…  Do we really feel metal detecting is in need of promotion or any sort of cheerleading squad?  Let's face it, attracting new detectorists to the hobby really only benefits those selling equipment or the individuals who receive dividends for endorsing said equipment. And more coils on the soil mean less relics for everyone—which isn't exactly advantageous to detectorists—but it does equate to more history being saved, so I'm okay with that.

When contemplating the terms "asset" and "ambassador", it is important to understand their context is confined to the metal detecting subculture born on social media; not the hobby itself. In other words, if I am found to be an asset or ambassador by the court of social media, I do not immediately "qualify" in the eyes of a landowner. 

Can you imagine a permission pitch based on testimonials like, "WaterDigger says I'm a cool chick" and "NuggetBrain thinks I'm the bomb!"?  Regardless of how many YouTube subscribers they may have; the landowner will stare blankly, scratch their head, and say, "Who???"  They are more impressed that I can offer references from their neighbors or someone well-respected in their local community.

The majority of landowners are simply not a part of the metal detecting subculture or its dialog.  So there isn't much chance someone will be holding up their hand saying, "Oh hey, before I let you detect I need to know where you stand in the long-time feud between FindsRecoverer and BadDiggahGal."  Because, in the real world no one really cares!!!  

And thank GOD for that. I would hate to have landowners basing my permission on DirtInvestigator's judgmental assault of my profile picture after his trousers suddenly tightened, or over someone questioning my "dedication" because I produce YouTube videos.

In reality, landowners are not interested that JoeConfederate is pouting over RelicGal's percussion cap having more likes than his box plate; or that he claims SlickSilverSally became popular by acting like a clown.  Nor does it matter what machine WesElite swings, whether someone has been accused of staging finds, or which detectorists are sleeping together. 

The point is, metal detecting doesn't have a "reputation".  It is not a living breathing thing (though it may often feel that way). And it would take a hell of a lot more than a little bit of Facebook drama to do any wide-spread damage to the hobby.  I'm more concerned over rolling up on a property after a landowner has watched a television show depicting targets dug with a backhoe, or having to apologize because some yay-hoo has left gaping holes all over the place.  

When I'm standing there with my shovel in hand the only thing the landowner really wants to know is whether I’m going to damage their property or steal something. 

Hashtag Are-you-going-to-kill-me-or-my-lawn!

Am I right?

It's too easy in this world of social media, with all its personalities, to wind up with an overdeveloped sense of self-importance. While certainly an online footprint can have far reaching consequences; in this situation one's virtual reputation doesn't factor.  What really matters is owning the traits that gained me the respect of those individuals who called me an "asset" or "ambassador" in the first place.  And while I may not agree with the terminology, I like to think the meaning stands for integrity, kindness, and being a decent human being as well as any skills I may have developed as a detectorist.

When we apply these traits by respecting property, rebuilding the trust of landowners who have had a bad experience, positively influencing newer detectorists, and reinforce good habits.--In these ways each one of us is an asset and ambassador of the hobby.  And that my friends far outshines any minor rumblings from the mythical dark side of detecting lurking in the distant corners of the internet.

xoxo Siren Kimmie

Friday, July 20, 2018

Professional Metal Detectorists?


The hobby of metal detecting is filled with people from all walks of life.  I myself am an Information Technology Professional.  To become an IT Pro, I had to go to school to learn the intricate workings of computers and software. I am a trained, certified professional in my field.  Correspondingly, teachers, nurses, doctors, dentists, have spent gobs of money on an education, not for a degree to hang on their wall, but to become skilled in their chosen profession.

Metal detecting on the other hand, requires no specialized training courses.  There is no college curriculum or certification program which can be completed to achieve the title of "Professional Metal Detectorist".  In fact, there is no distinct talent or ability needed to engage in the hobby.  Believe me, even those with horrible technique and the cheapest detectors, still manage to find amazing things and have a great time doing it!

While experience and knowledge are helpful, they are not essential. Deciphering tones and navigating trashy areas will come with time, but a new detectorist hunting a target rich location has just as much chance of finding that pot of gold as a 40 year veteran of the hobby.  In fact anyone can find a pot of gold, it's bloody big and the tone will blow your ears off!

When I hear the term "Professional Detectorist" tossed around, or am accused of being one myself, I cannot help but wrinkle my nose--It's a misnomer.  Calling a metal detectorist a professional is like saying a prostitute is a professional.  It's a learn-as-you-go sort of thing.  Sure, you may fumble around the first time or two, but eventually you'll figure it out.  You can certainly hone your skills by watching and learning from others who have been doing it longer, picking up tips and techniques from videos or books, and through simple trial and error.  But the more you do it and the more you learn your equipment the better you will become. It really is that simple!

-xoxo Siren Kimmie

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Siren Kimmie at Ultimate Metal Detectors

Ever wonder what my favorite coil is? Or the go to coil for some of the most popular machines?  Well this article answers that question!  I was happy to provide some insight regarding the Garrett AT Pro.  check it out my article here:   UltimateMetalDetectors.com

Friday, July 6, 2018

Anatomy of a Social Media Argument

How to Avoid Looking Silly

Joe was scrolling through Facebook one day when he came across a post on Carl's timeline expressing a dislike for the color pink.  Joe, who absolutely LOVES pink, felt compelled to comment. 

"How can you HATE the color pink?" Joe demands.
"I just do!" said Carl.
"But it's so cool" Joe replied.
"I think it's an ugly color," argues Carl.
"You're wrong!" shouts Joe.

THE ISSUES:
Is Carl wrong? 
Is Joe wrong? 

Since they are both stating an opinion, their feelings and preferences cannot be wrong.  No matter how much Joe demands that Carl should like the color pink, he isn't likely going to change Carl's mind unless he is able to change how Carl feels. Both parties should learn to respect that others have opinions which differ from their own and let it go. Instead they choose to have an intelligent debate.  However, as is so often the case online, the conversation takes an ugly turn as Joe attempts to grasp the origin of Carl's vehement dislike for the color pink.

"What is it about pink that you hate so much," Joe asks.
"Pink is a secondary color and I do not like secondary colors," Carl replies.
"Wait… Pink isn't a secondary color!" Joe demands, "It's a tint you idiot!"

PRESENTATION OF EVIDENCE:
Since pink is actually derived by mixing red and white, Joe insists that Carl is basing his opinion on incorrect facts and is therefore wrong (and apparently stupid). However, this newly gained information does not change Carl's opinion about the color.  The two men continue to debate the issue with Joe demonstrating the process of creating a "tint" and Carl providing examples of the secondary colors of light, mixing red and blue. 

The two being to argue whether magenta is a shade of pink.  Data is presented peppered with inflammatory memes, biased viral videos, and bogus news sources.  

Neither is willing to budge.

"I don't care, I just don't like the color pink. It's too flowery for me." Says Carl, "And I think you are dumb for liking it!"

"Flowery or not, it's still a cool color!" insists Joe, "So get bent!"

With deliberations coming straight back to opinions and feelings, two grown adults have been reduced to name calling and slinging obscenities (which makes them look completely foolish).  They begin arguing over the merits of being "flowery" as others join in, taking sides and presenting their own opinions and arguments.

OUTCOME:
The two men are no longer friends.
Their friends are no longer friends.
Incorrect information is shared, further dumbing down the interwebs.
Carl still hates pink.
Joe still loves pink.

WHAT WE'VE LEARNED:
Social media is the number one perpetrator of false information.
One should always verify facts before sharing them.
Arguing on social media is an utter waste of time and makes you look silly.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Cleveland's Dogs and Why it is The Home of Rock and Roll

If you ever wondered why the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame resides in Cleveland and when the first "Dawgs" growled, here is a bit of history:


On this day in 1952 local radio disc jockey Alan Freed, who coined the phrase "Rock and Roll" to describe the kind of music he had been spinning on his radio show on WJW did something that had never been done before. He, along with Cleveland record-store owner Leo Mintz, who had great interest in appealing to young customers of all races, began sponsoring a three hour rhythm and blues radio program. The "Moondog" himself, Alan Freed, appealed greatly to the younger generation with his his hip new personality and cool vocabulary.  The late night radio show, known as "The Moon Dog House" became increasingly popular, spurning Mintz and Freed to expand on this popularity by holding a live dance featuring artists from the show. Dubbed as "The Moondog Coronation Ball," hosted by the Alan Freed, the "father of rock and roll" himself, featured headliners Paul Williams and his Hucklebuckers and Tiny Grimes and the Rocking Highlanders.


Tickets sold out in a single day and thousands of teenagers lined up early at the Cleveland Arena hours before the show that cold Friday afternoon. The Moondog Coronation Ball held on March 21, 1952 became recognized in history as the very first major rock and roll concert.

Unfortunately, the show was shut down by police in less than an hour due to near-riot conditions as approximately 25,000 fans swarmed the 10,000 capacity arena. Citing issues from massive counterfeiting and possibly over booking, the tremendous overflow crowd broke through the gates to gain entry into the concert. That evening Alan Freed took the the airwaves offering an apology to listeners who attempted to attend the event. He said, "If anyone had told us that some 20 or 25,000 people would try to get into a dance; I suppose you would have been just like me... You would have laughed and said they were crazy!"


The Cleveland Arena

As for the "Dawgs" of Cleveland - Alan Freed, the "Moondog" himself, and his successful radio show entitled "The Moon Dog House" paved the way for the likes of Geauga Dog, the mascot for Geauga Lake Amusement Park which was in existence from 1889 to 1999; Kobby the purebred boxer who was the mascot for Cleveland Fire Department's Engine Co. 24 in 1966; the Cleveland Cavilers' mascot "Moondog"; and of course, the Cleveland Browns mascots "Comps" and "Swagger" not to mention the infamous Dawg Pound...  Coincidence, subliminal or just  natural progression, either way The Cleveland Dog is firmly ensconced in the city's history and there is no doubt as to where Rock and Roll was born.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Don't Let "The Sun" Go Down On Me


Here in the States we have a magazine known as The National Enquirer.  It's the type of publication you'd reach for if you were interested in articles about "bat boy", Elvis sightings, or the latest celebrity gossip--certainly not a Pulitzer prize-caliber publication.  The Sun is the UK's equivalent, featuring similarly sensationalized articles, having become infamous for their "page 3" spank bank images of bare-breasted women.  Not surprisingly, the thirty-year running spread was axed due to outcries of misogyny, objectification, and a general consensus that the nudity was maybe a bit over-the-top for a daily reader. Yet The Sun's reputation as a tabloid with over-sexualized and dramatized stories remains firmly intact. 

When I came across The Sun's article "GIRLS ROCK "; (in all caps) subtitled "Meet the treasure hunters making metal detecting cool…" my tummy did a flip-flop.  I was perplexed over the use of my "name" and its prominent placement in the title.  While it is true, I do not own the words "girls rock," they have become inextricably entwined with my identity.  As proof to the confusion, messages began trickling in regarding my involvement in the article which embodies the complete antithesis of what Girls Rock Metal Detecting represents.  Please make no mistake, I had no part in this collaboration and the use of "Girls Rock" is purely coincidental… I think.

The truth is, I find The Sun's article to be the most condescending, embarrassing, and insulting piece of "journalism" geared towards female detectorists that I have ever read.  And before misconstruing my reaction as any sort of sour grapes or jealousy, please know that the only feelings I experienced while reading that rubbish was utter relief that my given name and projects were not included, along with abject disgust over the complete disrespect for women in this hobby.

No offense to the women interviewed, some of whom found the article equally cringe-worthy.  Nor do I cast any aspersions upon detectorist's whose motivations are different from my own-- as I have said before, there is no "wrong reason" for metal detecting.  But the underling suggestion that all lady diggers are fame seeking opportunists using tits for hits is certainly not a true microcosm of the female detectorist!  Equally disturbing was the overall reader response which seemed more preoccupied with the notion that women are not treated differently in detecting. 

Really?

There could be no better evidence of differential treatment of women in detecting than The Sun article itself!  I can think of a dozen women off the top of my head who deserve recognized for their accomplishments in metal detecting; however the only mention of achievements in the article was afforded to male detectorists.  Instead The Sun insinuates that most lady detectorists are driven by popularity and an income.  The article offered cleavage and cutsie instead of content, while patronizing the very subjects it claimed to be representing! Further exacerbating the issue were reader comments discussing who has the "nicest teeth", or arguing over which detectorist is "the hottest", only served to punctuate the point.

Ask a handful of female detectorists about their experiences and you'll be surprised at their stories. Aside from the cat calls and car horns as they're bent over a target; online, women are sidestepping sexual innuendos, inappropriate comments, and unsolicited advances left and right.  Meanwhile they're subjected to everything from slut shaming to being criticized for selfies or receiving too many likes on a post. Surfing though the murky waters of the web you'll find plenty of examples of sexy woman being utilized to sell products or increase views. You'll also find groups circulating pictures of naked women metal detecting along with rude comments like "Show us them tits…Nobody cares about metal detecting," (Seriously?) or the same tired pinpointer and shaft jokes.  Couple this with manufacturers utilizing high-heeled women in bikinis, and now The Sun's article which adds its own special form of degradation...

Meanwhile the suggestion of a "tight-knit" group of women in the Facebook detecting community made me choke on my over-priced Starbucks. Some of the worst damage being done to the image of the female detectorist is being carried out against one another. Riddled with the cliquey-est behavior just north of the high school cafeteria; it is difficult to find groups devoid of bullies, drama queens, and meanies.  Scrolling through any number of groups will quickly unearth examples of in-fighting and sheer ugliness.  It's something I've continued to recuse myself from only to be ostracized for my lack of participation (much to my delight). 

Just like any other hobby or walk of life, stereotyping is bad. There are some great groups and online magazines who are very supportive, but female detectorists do have to deal with occasional ignorance.  The Sun article is a fine demonstration of that!  They were given the perfect opportunity to provide an honest portrayal of female detectorists but squandered it for views.  They are by definition the very reason I began Girls Rock Metal Detecting in the first place.  Through my endeavors I have attempted to display the true spirit of female detectorists.  And the simple truth is, we are not as enigmatic as one would think.  

If you really want a true glimpse at our inner workings and what drive us in this hobby I will let you in on a little secret--Just picture a male detectorist.  That's right, beyond complicated issues like, where we take a wee while out in the field, trying to find detecting gear not slathered in pink camo, and dealing with bra issues caused by poor undergarment choices—we are essentially the same. At the heart of it, detectorist are detectorists.  Unfortunately that angle doesn't sell magazines.