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Magic: The Traveling

A Magic: the Gathering travel blog
Finding MtG in the most unlikely places

Consumptive Goo vs. La Brea Tar Pits

Magic the Gathering Card: Consumptive GooLos Angeles: La Brea Tar Pits

La Brea Tar Pits
Los Angeles
California

34.06306731482197
-118.35539102554321

I grew up in Los Angeles, and ultimately, I moved away because the the phrase “Consumptive Goo” is a metaphorically accurate description in so, so many ways. At the Page Museum’s La Brea Tar Pits, the metaphor becomes unnecessary, as the entire complex is built on a bazillion-year-old mass of primordial sludge, beneath which are the remains of several thousand prehistoric species, including, no shit, Dire Wolves.

Apparently, dire wolves were not made up by George R.R. Martin. They were real (yaaaay!). And they died in droves trying to eat mammoths that were trying to eat plants that were trying to eat water that was trying to be left alone but was stuck in a tarpit instead.

So many dire wolves died, in fact, that the Tar Pits features a backlit wall of 404 dire wolf skulls, arrayed in a grid of awesome and backlit by the unfiltered light of doom.

My life, once again, has meaning.

Not to be outdone on the whole skull thing was the giant ground sloth, Kyle’s power animal / spirit guide, which, if Kyle’s superpower is any indication, are capable of totally not moving for maybe-it’s-dead periods of time.

For Kyle, it was less about the skulls and more the bone matrix, or as he calls it, “the horror soaked ossiaries that have to be scooped out by hippies every summer”. Translation: Because of funding issues, the museum can only afford to continue its excavations one season a year, during which palentologists decend into the pits and painstakingly extract thousands of ancient meerkat phalanges. Or whatever.

In other conversation-killing news:

  1. Mastadons and mammoths are not the same thing.
  2. Sabertooth tigers are not really tigers. They’re sabertooth cats.
  3. Tarpits aren’t like quicksand. You don’t sink. You’re just stuck until something else eats you, or you starve.
  4. The tarpits only snagged about one big kill a decade.

As for the rest of Los Angeles? Pfeh, I say. Pfeh.

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