TIP Part 1 Preview

(Originally posted on LMLK Blogspot 4-22-2006)

My goal is to blog every weekend, but last week a very special event took place near me in Long Beach, CA–the final local performance of the Quidam show by Cirque du Soleil. It was spectacular!

The big news this week is that I received a draft copy of the first of a 3-part series of articles on LMLK postage stamps in The Israel Philatelist (TIP; published by The Society of Israel Philatelists). There’s a 99% chance it will be in the June issue, which unlike some magazines, will actually be printed & distributed in the first week of June.

Of the 3 parts, this one presents an update on related archeological activities over the past few decades since the last time TIP published an article on the subject. Highlights:

* How I became involved with philately

* The Z2U drawing by Bliss that served as a basis for the design

* A photo of the actual impression Bliss found

* A summary of LMLK debate issues

* Why I refer to the icon as a “winged light”

* An introduction to Type 484s vs. Pithoi

* A call for philatelists to examine their collections for serial #s

Altogether, Part 1 consists of about 2,000 words spanning 4 pages including 36 footnotes, a photo, a drawing, & a table of serial number ranges.

I submitted Parts 2 & 3 in January (each with about the same amount of content as Part 1), but they’ve been tweaked a few times since then, & may need additional tweaking soon. This week I discovered a new element on the 3-mil asterisk sheets, which may have bearing on whether it was printed last (the past consensus) or first (the side I’m currently leaning towards).

These TIP articles will serve as a nice bridge/intermediary to the content of LMLK vol. 2, which is mostly done, & has been since last year. I’m dragging my feet on its publication for 3 reasons:

1) I expect exciting new revelations from excavations at Ramat Rahel, Gath, & Nahal Tut over the next couple of years, & it wouldn’t make sense to publish v2 prematurely since it summarizes all the sites. I’m also hoping the Burj data gets published.

2) The stuff that’s missing from v2 right now requires a great amount of foraging through preliminary reports & obscure books on various Hezekiah vs. Sennacherib scenarios, as well as laborious illustrations.

3) I’m still within my projected estimate of 3-5 years from v1; & since I’m the publisher, I get to decide whether the schedule can slip, & I’m not against it slipping if it’s for a good reason (see reason #1 above).

In other news, I finally have a book in draft form that will serve as a bridge/intermediary to LMLK vol. 2! At this moment it consists of 364 pages, but the draft font is huge, & I’ll eventually shrink it to keep the page-count closer to 200. It will definitely be a cheap (~$9?) mass-produced paperback, unlike the limited-edition hardcovers for the LMLK series. I expect it to appeal to a much wider audience than the LMLK phenomenon draws. Believe it or not, I found a way to connect Quidam to this excursus, & naturally, the excursus to LMLK!

Details forthcoming… (Gotta have a reason to attract readers to this blog each week!)

Song of the week: “Running Wild” by Judas Priest (click the song title to visit Amazon; click here for a 14-second sample; 174kb), ’cause what’s the point in livin’, unless you’re livin’ wiiiiiiiiiiiiild!!!
G.M. Grena

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