The Good New Days

20 Nov

Recently, Dick Stout wrote a post about the good old days. It is awesome to hear about the good old days. Unfortunately, I am a relative newcomer to the hobby and I only get to live in the now days, pull tabs and all.

Comparing then to now in the hobby is like commenting on a lake that was over fished and then acting as if we didn’t have anything to do with the lake being over fished. Oh how the good old days were better! When the fish were plenty and all you had to do was find a stick and put some line on it and go home with a full stringer! Now you have to buy a special rod with a special lure and a fish finder to find the two or three leery fish that are hiding in the deep pockets of the lake.  Meanwhile, the essence of fishing remained the same. Changes on technology or changes in the fish population  of the lake didn’t change that. The environment changed, the elements of fishing didn’t.

So it is with detecting. The essence of the hobby has not changed, even if we need more to get it done.

All I have to deal with are the new days. I did not come into a situation where most of the coinage in the first four inches of dirt is all silver. What’s left for me are coins that are deeper than 6 inches. Oh sure, If I have the good fortune to get permission to hunt a private property, I may find old coins laying on top of the ground (yes, I am referring to your 1867 Shield nickel, lawdog1). But if a park hunter you are, then you know what I am talking about. So I can not wax nostalgic about the time when men were men and men used probes. Deep coins and heavy masking are my lot. A member of our club who has hunted for 50 years (!) likes to remind us that when he started, he didn’t have to contend with the carpet of pull tabs, bottle caps, and can slaw that we have to deal with on a daily basis. So in order for us to stand a chance we need new tech. We need every bit of help we can get. All things being equal, I just don’t believe the old machines could compete with the likes of the Etrac, or the V31, or the Deus; not in a trashy park of today. We need depth and we need speed. Yes, we also need skill but given the reality of today’s metal detecting, us newbies should not feel bad nor apologize for wanting new, more powerful metal detectors.

We deal with the reality of life as it is presented to us. We can not turn back time. In these times, not the good old days, we the dusty, dirty-knee metal detectors forge relationships with our city’s government. We forge relationships with the State’s Archeologists. We organize hunts and we sit around and talk about our finds. We accomplish this just as in the good old days, by meeting with people face to face.

As for the T.V. shows, well, that’s entertainment for you. No t.v. producer is going to make a show based on the malcontents I hunt with. The child-like excitement we all feel when we find something really cool that’s been buried for over 100 years doesn’t translate well; to any medium. And I am not worried that those shows (greatly) exaggerate the good to bad finds ratio. Any sap who takes up my beloved hobby based on one of those t.v. shows will quickly run into the truth. If that person was born to do this, then they will shrug and go on, if not, then another detector will go in a closet for a grandchild to discover later.
No major harm done here.

Another thing that has not changed since the good old days is the satisfaction of hunting with friends. Yes, my friends and I all use smart phones instead of those old rotary phones but we put them to good use. I cannot go running to my wife to show her my corroded Indian because she couldn’t care less. But I can text a picture of it to lawdog1 or to Steve and I will get an honest reaction, often to match my own. And I think that regardless of what direction metal detecting takes, the Zen of walking along a beautiful park on a beautiful day, just one and the tones, will always be a part of it.

So I celebrate the good old days, as they are described to me by those who lived them. But I also celebrate the now days. The days I get to go out and let my inner 9 year old out to get giddy with the next silver coin dug out of the ground just as it was in the good old days.

Thank you for stopping by.


5 Responses to “The Good New Days”

  1. Dick Stout November 20, 2014 at 5:12 pm #

    You may be right but you will never be successful until you dress in camo… It’s apparently a proven treasure finder. Then again if it isn’t you at least look very macho.

    • pulltabMiner November 21, 2014 at 10:20 am #

      LOL Dick! I may have to put that on my Christmas list.

  2. stevessunkentreasures November 21, 2014 at 6:25 am #

    Good points Miner. I can agree with some of your points. I really want a detector with more bells and whistles but I always talk myself out of it. You know my hunting style has changed over the last couple of years. Went from primarily a park hunter to primarily hunting private lands. I did this for the reasons you discuss. Less trash etc. i think you are spot on about peoples reaction to the hobby if they base it solely on TV shows. maybe this will lead to a detector upgrade on the cheap for me someday. As a matter of fact when I bought my Ace it was this exact situation. A fellow bought it went out for two days and called it quits. I do dream of good old days but in 20-30 years we may realize these are the good old days. I agree with Mr Stout about go pros, camo, and a few other things that seem to be necessity these days. I’ll stick to the nail apron.. It works well and is cheap

  3. lawdog1 November 21, 2014 at 6:31 pm #

    It counts! I was detecting at the time! 🙂

    Nice article. I would take the good old days any day. ++ on the nail apron Steve!

  4. NjNyDigger November 22, 2014 at 5:16 pm #

    Terrific blog! I hear you on the cold, our season is about over here in the northeast 😦 Keep up the awesome work here! If you’d like, check out our detecting forum, lots of super things happening there. Would love to have you as a fellow member –

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