primal love... (lillian part 0)

i discovered the most unexpected thing today on my museum quest for ms. rhonwyn (my boss at the otago museum). while here at new Zealand's national museum te papa in wellington, i stumbled across an advert that has caused me both immense excitedness but also sadness...
as many of you probably know, new zealand is not an overly abundant source for dinosaur fossils. i can now confirm that first hand, having seen the majority of their 10ish dinosaur bones all in one incredibly small display case here at te papa! none of the bones even came from the same individual let alone articulate with each other!
so if a new zealand museum wanted to put on a dinosaur display they'd have to borrow the dinosaurs from somewhere else...
well te papa just hosted such an exhibit a couple months ago, people of the innerweb, and finding out where they got some of their dinosaurs really hit "home" for me...
not just because this means more dinosaurs are coming over here to my "supposedly" saurian-free zone. not because i missed the exhibition... though this does irritate me since i love to keep up to date with what my kind has to do to make a living in the human world.... it hit home for me, people of the web wide world because of the star attraction of the travelling dinosaur exhibition they brought in...
the annex co. international dinosaur exhibition show cased many cool specimens. fossil skeletons and remains from all over the world (in fact looking at the advert i can't help but notice a brilliant world-wide and cross time period coverage! this looks like it was one heck of an amazing exhibition!), interactive displays and activities, a daily puppet show (got to love puppet shows!), but the biggest draw of all was non other than lillian the albertosaur!!!
now for those of you out there on the innerweb who don't know who lillian is here's the short version... cause i could talk about her all day... so hot! oh man just thinking about her there caused me to drool on myself!
for the longest time lillian was the star attraction at the royal tyrrell museum. to give you an idea how big a star, she was among the only 4 living dinosaurs allowed in the museum's main dinosaur hall while tourists were in the building! (i can't even count how many of the rest of us drumheller based dinosaurs wished we were in that boat!).
despite the other three, lillian was the poster hatchling... er child of the lot. after all who wants to see an edmontonia, stegoceras, or struthiomimus more than a glorious tyrannosaurid goddess like lillian?

i of course, met her during this period. the whole time i grew up and worked at the tyrrell i'd see lillian standing magnificently in the dinosaur hall with crowds gathered around her. by the time i was 3 years old i was head over heel claws for lillian. i'd never (and still haven't) seen a more beautiful coelurosaur in all my life...

which leads us to the hardship and tragedy of this particular tale. you see i fancied her so much that well i... well kinda sorta... oh this is embarrassing to say people of the web wide world... i kinda asked her out...

i know! i KNOW! what was i thinking?!? what could a bomb-shell from the cretaceous like her possibly ever see in a pathetic little runt of a king lizard like me???

anyways when i asked her out i might have accidentally mentioned some rumours going around at the time about the museum thinking about letting her go. she really didn't like that, and got unbelievably angry with me (well okay unbelievably angry for a human... as far as female tyrannosaurids go this was believable i guess), and obviously didn't go out with me...

after i left the tyrrell (i was fired a day after that!) lillian ended up being let go as well. so it wasn't just a rumour i'd heard. so it proved my good intentions in telling her were justified, and she'd tried to kill the messenger... not the message!

turns out the museum let her go due to the interventions of my JERK! of a cousin larry. he wanted to get back at lillian for not joining his stupid coelurosaur only club the pack of the primordial feather...

i had no idea what had happened to her after this. she disappeared from drumheller, and i had no way of finding out where she'd gone or what had happened to her...

i guess she got on with the annex co. exhibition after this, and managed to stay a star. that makes me happy!

making me very sad and miserable though, people of the innerweb is the fact i missed seeing her by a mere month!!!

now i've spent the whole afternoon pining over it! i mean a lot has changed in both our lives. neither of us is still stuck in dinosaur overflowing drumheller. it's been a long time (almost 2 years) since all that went down. i've got a lot more going for me, and i feel a lot more confident (though a growth spurt would be handy) and capable than i did at the tyrrell.

what if we'd bumped into each other? maybe i could have had a second chance!
just imagine it people of the innerweb...

once upon a time... er a month ago time...

i'd have been wandering through te papa exploring its scary maze like interior, and getting lost like i did here today. only a month ago i'd have made an unbelievably happy discovery!

i can just see it in my tiny brain the size of a peanut...
across the lobby i'd spot lillian in all her glorious beauty... oh man especially those legs. er sorry... _
the thought of just seeing her again makes me feel giddy people of the innerweb!
now how cool would it be if i spotted her, and she didn't see me! oh that would be the perfect set up for getting myself back into her life... i could go on a tyrannosaur style hunt. not for prey, but for love... her not knowing i was here well that'd be the first step in emotional prowling!

i'd have to play it cool when i finally approached her. couldn't make it seemed like too forced a run in. casual. definitely needs to seem casual...

in the main lobby would be the perfect spot... i could just stand there 'minding my own business', and suddenly turned around surprised. "why lillian albertosaur! what are you doing here in new zealand?" i could ask pleasantly astonished.

"oh me, i moved here 2 years ago after leaving the tyrrell," i'd reply matter of factly when she asked what i was doing in new zealand. it'd be key i didn't show my annoyance or pain of getting rejected by the tyrrell... i can't seem like i'm still hung up over the place. cause though i still miss it on occasion, i sometimes feel i'm better off down here than i was up there. sometimes...

now would come the tricky part. the getting through the ackwardness that was our last interaction in drumheller. i couldn't let that linger or go unsaid. i needed to start on a fresh page, and to make sure of that i'd want to confront it right away...

so after slickly talking away the misunderstanding, and getting her to see i was trying to help her i'd hopefully have her interested in catching up a little more. how hard could all that really be? it seems so easy when i'm imagining it...

here she'd find out we have a lot in common. we're both tyrannosaurids trying to make it in the harsh, and often misunderstanding human world. neither of us likes my cousin larry! both of us refused to join the pack of the primordial feather. uh... i'm sure loads of other stuff would come to the surface...

anyways after this pleasant conversation and smooth reentry into her sphere of existence (come to think of it did she even know my name back in the day?) we'd both have things to do that day, places to go. so i'd cleverly ask in passing as we prepared to go our separate ways "would you care to meet sometime tomorrow for a bite to eat?"

she'd think about it and suggest after her shift tomorrow... no better she'd insist i pick her up after work!

i'd say i'd meet her back in the lobby at closing time sharp (with the devious plan of being just a touch late to not come off as too desperate!).

so than how would i prepare for this dinner "date"... i use the quotations because though we didn't formally call it a date she'd know... right?

hmmmm i'd have to bring something. i've watched enough human movies to know that the boy has to bring the girl something nice at the beginning... only what do you get a female albertosaur?!?

i still haven't made a final choice (maybe the only good reason i'm a month late. be kinda hard to pull this off, and still not know what i'm bringing!!!), but here's what i've thought of so far:

A. Flowers
i know humans give each other flowers. only i'm not sure it'd be best for lillian.

the point of flowers is to keep them around your home and make the place prettier. only most tyrannosaurids, especially now road show lillian wouldn't have anywhere to keep them...

so to fix that problem...

B. Flowers in a vase

if i brought her flowers in their own good looking container that'd do the trick.

however it still leaves the problem of whether lillian would like them or not...

see tyrannosaurids don't have the fixation on making our homes pretty. in fact in our natural state we don't really have permanent homes, and even a packs home range could change a lot.

come to think of it flowers were still kind of primitive in the cretaceous, and i'm not sure they were as pretty as today. all i know is that i have no tyrannosaur instincts telling me i like flowers. i think i picked that up growing up among humans!

okay so rethinking flowers for the gift i came at it from a different angle!

C. Pizza

now my logic here is what do human boys bring girls if not flowers? why chocolates of course!

the problem here is we theropods are such big fans of sweet human foods. their being based on sugar cane PLANTS and all.
so what has the same sort of bad for you flavour? tomato sauceless modified dough meat lovers pizza. not only does it have lots of yummy meat, but cheese being a real novelty animal product (we dinosaurs of course don't lactate like you mammals so milk is just a really whacky food experience for us in the modern world!).

however i thought maybe some parts of this gift, especially the dough, might be a bit hard to come by. so i came up with another food...
D. Squid

now i won't lie to you people of the web wide world. i'm not sure why squid came into my peanut sized brain. i think i might have used up all my thinking capacity on those first ideas.

squid is tasty, but a bit too rubbery.

that and come to think of it food based gifts would ruin lillian's appetite, and that would then ruin our date. food is a big part of the date.

so i was going to need something completely different...
E. Rock Hammer

okay i hear what you're saying people of the innerweb. "traumador why a rock hammer?!?"... the problem is i can't answer you!

i really do think my first few ideas has worn out my poor little brain.

in fact thinking it through now a rock hammer is just a WEIRD gift. not just in human terms, but for a dinosaur living today you have to understand a rock hammer has a lot of connotations attached to it.

they're our life line into the cenozoic, and are typically how humans 'rescue' our eggs from the limbo of deep time. at the same time giving one to a dinosaur as a gift is kinda like saying you're a loser, and you need this to find and dig up a friend.

so yeah scratch that last idea from the list!

again though i ask you people of the innerweb; what do you give an albertosaur on a date?

after the gift it would time to go on the date.

as i asked her out to dinner, we're going to have to go to dinner.
now for a human such as yourself dinner is merely the act of sitting down and eating. it can of course be a very enjoyable activity for people, but afterwards they typically need to engage in another 'bonding' experience.

for us tyrannosaurs getting something to eat wasn't just a part of the daily routine, it is our lifestyle. being the dominant predator means you have to be on top of not just your eating habits but your eating choices. the best part about our hunting was it was often a social event.

so rather than take lillian out to some fancy boring human resturant, where i'd have to blow my entire earnings as a museum security guard, i'd take her to the most common site (and sight i guess... how do you like that pun!?!) in new zealand...

a field of sheep...

which would be so easy. i couldn't get lost finding 'the place' even if i tried. just pick a direction and head out of town. no matter which way you headed you'd be at a sheep station in no time...

when you think about it a farm pen is just like a resturant for a theropod. it would combine the thrill of the hunt, with the ease of an controlled eating environment. you'd have to catch and kill your prey, but there's no risk of it escaping during the chase!

i can just picture our anticipation as we stalked into a paddock.

the herd of sheep shifting uneasily as it detected our presence. unlike our standard saurian prey of ceratopsians or even way less hardcore hadrosaurs, sheep can't pull any dangerous defenses. none of that mass stampeding towards us (your average horned or duckbilled dinosaur weighing 2 tons, with really big duck billed dinos being 4 tons would mean a whole highway worth of traffic rushing at you!!!), or organized defence patterns, and or run the other way from you.

oh the anticipation... i think. to be honest i've never really done the proper tyrannosaur thing. i'm getting excited thinking about it, and hope it'd be as fun in real life as in my head. hopefully lillian has done it before, or we could go hungry that night come to think of it...

okay so first thing in the hunt is to size up the herd, and try to spook it into disunity. that'd be fun. with lillian's beautiful massive size (tyrannosaurid females are the hotter the bigger they are) of just under 2 tonnes, the puny pathetic sheep would be a nice fun easy spooking.

then the really fun part! the rush!!!

we'd charge the herd, and try to seperate a few of the weaker ones from the majority. heck cause we're on a fun date maybe we could even pull a human move and choose stronger individuals for the kill.

this is going to be the real shared experience of the date. the key social bonding in tyrannosaurids comes from our pack coordination. if i could impress lillian here than progressing things between us from here would be easy...

though lillian brings sheer power and brute strength to the hunt, on account of being a full sized adult, even her jaws, the most powerful in the natural world can't bring down a puny sheep if she can't catch it. that's where i come in. just like in the old days of the cretaceous i'd be the sprinter with my juvenille tyrannosaurid body. i'd chase the sheep right to where she could...

finish off the fun. there would be no point in being quick about it mind you. again its not like our dinner is getting away or anything. so we could prolong the hunt, and chase the herd from one end of the paddock to the other to our hearts content!

with us eventually making the kill... though the best part is unlike 65 million years ago (or 75 million i guess if we were going for lillian's era) if we wanted seconds we won't have to goto great lengths to track them down!

in the end i just know lillian would be extremely statisfied with our performance. not only would we have a tasty supper, but she definitely would get to be the dominiant one when it came to moving and presenting dinner.

tyrannosaurid females as the matriarchs of the pack are thus the boss, and they like to be in charge of everything food related. due to my small size i couldn't move a dead sheep even if i wanted to (so much blood... won't want to risk staining my shirt!), so lillian would have to do the moving, which would make her in charge of the kill, and i'm pretty sure she'd be more than happy with that!

having eaten our fill, timed perfectly with the sunset we'd sit watching it and talking about sweet nothings. i could impress her with all my thinking on various topics like modern dinosaurs' place in the modern world, or why squid is such underrated theropod meal, and how much my cousin larry sucks and his stupid pack of the primordial feather!

the best part being as we got more and more comfortable around each other i could finally make my move. this is something i won't dare risk (again) until lillian was quite at ease. after filling her belly, and a nice calming conversation lillian would be much more relaxed than normal.

tyrannosaurids are irritable things at the best of times. there's plenty of examples in the fossil record of where we tried to rip each other to pieces. females being the bigger and scarier of us tyrannosaurids, were the worst. try to place the mac too soon, and you're dead meat. especially if you're a bite sized me!

my move would be to mate with her...

there's only one problem people of the innerweb... i have NO idea what mating is or what it means!!!

i've seen, heard, and read the word mating tons of times in nature shows, documentaries, and books. it's what boy and girl animals do to finalize their courtships, but they never say anything beyond that...

back when i was a hatchling still living with my discoverer and legal guardian craig i asked him what mating meant. he said he'd tell me when i was older. when i asked how old was old enough, craig replied that my instincts would kick in and i'd know what to do anyway, but that i could ask then... problem is that i moved out shortly after that, and to boot forgot to ask about it everytime i saw him after that!

when i tried to look it up on the innerweb just now hit either a bunch of sites that needed me to be older than 18 (that's a tyrannosaur senior citizen we only live into our 20's!!! i'm ALMOST 5 for crying out loud! if i was growing normally i'd look like a near fully grown coelurosaur... stupid dinosaurist human rules!) and one site that said something about birds and bees...

what does birds and bees have to do with two tyrannosaurs courting? i guess we're the birds? so than i guess i'll have to research a sheep farm beside a bee keepers!... wait what did dinosaurs and other animals do before the cretaceous when bees hadn't evolved yet?!?

anyways it won't matter. i know that after this perfect night, and perfect date that my second courtship of lillian would go off without a hitch...

and we would live happily ever after...

that people of the innerweb is what i would do if i ever bumped into lillian the albertosaur again... with a plan this tight what could go wrong?

Production Note: The answer to poor Traumador's question will be coming to the Tyrannosaur Chronicles in June 2008... After the completion of the, sadly rather drawn out, museum quest the Chronicles will be making a more permanant shift towards Dinosaur and prehistoric themes so be sure to check back in with us, and in the meantime follow Traum on his visits of the various museums throughout New Zealand.

Prehistoric Insanity Unity

Also be sure to check out the rest of the Prehistoric Insanity Production's affliate blogs' entries into the Boneyard #20 contest.

* Peter Bond takes us on a tour of Canada's largest fossil collection

* Prehistoric Insanity Productions takes you on a behind the scenes making of this meeting a 3D Lillian Prehistoric Creature.

Also be sure to hit Laelaps to check out the other entries, and most important to vote. You simply have to leave a comment on the Laelaps post to register your vote.

Thanks for stopping by, and hopefully see you again in the future!


The Ridger, FCD said...

Your brain may be small, but your imagination is huge! I hope your date goes half as well as you've planned it.

And congrats for making the Boneyard!

Anonymous said...

hey dude! great blog! I really enjoyed it. Hope we can meet up at tyrrell this summer.


Traumador said...


Thanks. It's really cool to finally have made a boneyard (and this one's topic was MADE for me and my blog ;p ).

As for the well wishing on the date that assumes I ever manage to run into Lillian. I just missed her big show in New Zealand, what are the chances she'll be down here again?


Long time no see dude!

Hows life been going?

Are you working at the Tyrrell this summer than?!? That would be ubber cool. Rumour has it I might be popping in that area around August, but it is just a rumour...

Definately keep popping by the blog. Will be some "good old" days Tyrrell stuff going up SOON...