About dynamicphenomenon

Undergraduate. South Dakota born and raised. I despise the state I am whether it being physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. I walk around grumpy with an intuition to have a better attitude about life. I chose to do a blog to help me find my way through all the narcissism, lack of friends, and the dying need to change my life for the better.

Saturday Shopping

Today I spent time with my friends in the city. This morning we had breakfast. I had some time to work a little bit on my paper. Then we drove to St. Cloud to shop. The mall in St. Cloud is real nice. I opted out of the trip on the research vessel, because I made friends to go to go out their farm in Annadale to see a concert on Sunday. We are going to see Charlie Parr. While I’m here I’m trying to work on our paper to be turned in tomorrow at 11am. Im excited for next week and to see everybody at the all team gathering. Sorry but I’m not going to make it to the picnic on Sunday.


Emilia and Ricky mentally working writing their methodology while preserving their physical strength.

I’m glad this week is over. The past two days have been kind of intense. I had to remind to distress and think positive. We are almost done with our data collection phase, and soon on our way to start wrapping things up. Today was a nice day to relax and rest up for next week. Have a great weekend everybody.

A good day for a powwow.

Yesterday Charlie said he appreciates the work we are doing for the tribe, and in return he made us a wild rice meal and taught us how to carve “rice knockers”. His gratitude gave me more appreciation for this opportunity being here.

Jordan Ida Ricky and a local watching grand entry.

Jordan Ida Ricky and a local watching grand entry.

Today Christa, Ricky, Emilia, Jordan and I went to a veterans powwow in Sawyer, a community in Fond du Lac. When we arrived they were honoring Lex Porter, a World War II veteran who passed away in 1990, and his role as a code talker in the war. They said he never spoke of what he really did in the war and that he only said he was a “radio man”. His family shared with everyone a secret he kept years after his time in war. It was that while on the front lines the code talkers were to be shot and killed if enemies were encroaching in order to protect military information. This made me sad, but I am proud of all Native American code talkers for what they did for our nation. Here’s a news story about Lex Porter  http://www.armytimes.com/article/20131215/NEWS/312150012/Minn-code-talker-gets-Medal-Honor-posthumously

We watched grand entry and danced in a couple rounds of intertribal songs. Midnight Express, world champion drum group, was the honor drum. The powwow wasn’t very much different from one at home in Pine Ridge. It felt good to see children dancing and hear the powwow emcee say, “hoka hey”. I walked around the arbor a few times before I embraced the differences. Powwows can get messy, but this one had workers who maintained the waste. A lot of work went into this celebration.

I talked to a few people set up around the grounds who were educating the public about their cause; a woman from the city who was sharing information on how people with disabilities can get help, a member from the American Indian Movement of Minneapolis who was fundraising to help homeless, and a man against wolf hunting. After walking around some more I finally settled with buying food from an anishinaabe vendor. I bought a taco-n-a-bag and cheese fries, I had to indulge a bit. It wasn’t so bad, because I was supporting native vendors. Plus I got a discount for showing my tribal ID! It was a good day to go to a powwow.

Ricky, Chirsts and Emilia dancing in an interibal at the Fond du Lac Veteran's Powwow.

Ricky, Christa and Emilia dancing in an interibal at the Fond du Lac Veteran’s Powwow.

Back to Fond du Lac

The purpose of our trip to Minneapolis was for our team to follow up on the core samples that were collected a couple weeks ago. We split our cores and archived one half, then retrieved core samples from the working half. We collected smear slides to observe the initial core descriptions of our cores and observed the phytolith processing prep lab to continue our phytolith analysis next week.  We also kept in mind that the work we did this week will contribute a lot to our methods section of our research papers.

Now that we have collected our phytoliths samples we are able to return to the lab in Fond du Lac to continue our research. I look forward to next week as we get to look more in depth at our smear slides, and phytoliths.

Team Zagiagaan

Jesse, Mah’Ko’Quah, Ricky, and Emilia use sieves to screen out diatoms and spicule fractions from samples at phytolith lab at UofM campus.

Dreaming of Phytoliths



Yesterday we wrapped up the week with a trip to three rice lakes. On our way Chad discussed more on what a phytolith is. He explained phytoliths being very different from microfossils, and that he considers them more as microscopic plant remains. The first part of the week we practiced identifying phytoliths with light microscopes.  And some of us were able to begin searching for phytoliths to use for our research.  We studied phytoliths to the point we were having dreams about them. In the following weeks we will use these skills in our research.

We are going Minneapolis tomorrow for a week. I look forward to seeing the University of Minnesota campus and seeing what the other teams are working on. One of the challenges I think for next week is going to be the ‘elevator pitch’ of our research. I don’t know if it’s going to really happen but it’s something that I’m prepared to try. 

Today I used the morning to continue work on the introduction to our research papers. I find that science writing is difficult, because you must use an active voice, keep things simple, and comprehend the context of other journals to include in your paper and be aware not to plagiarize.


New House!!!

Moving into a bigger cabin was the highlight of the week for me. I was getting homesick in the little cabin we were in. It feel so much better to have my own room and space to hangout.

Ricardo and Christa participating in a canoe race at Big Lake.

Ricardo and Christa participating in a canoe race at Big Lake.

Today Christa took some of us to Big Lake to spend time at an Ojibwe language camp. We got to eat really good chicken & wild rice soup. We took part in canoe races and horse shoe tournament.