Debi raises an interesting problem. Her father has found footprints and archaeologists are dismissive. Why are archaeologists dismissive and, if you have found something mind-bogglingly weird, how would you get someone to take you seriously?
One of my supervisors is, as far as I know, the world’s only professor of Archaeoastronomy, and one of the very few archaeoastronomers in an archaeology department. As a result he’s very busy. So busy that when he’s away occasionally I’ll be asked to answer the phone for him. Usually what happens is that someone will phone up with something urgent to discuss, and the department won’t be able to contact my supervisor because he’s in Armenia or Peru or Hawaii. He also organises and participates in a few conferences, there are TV crews asking his advice, he’s a busy man, and so urgent phone calls are a frequent occurrence. What then happens is I answer the phone to talk to someone who hasn’t found Atlantis, they’re always very clear on that, but have found evidence of ancient astronomy in somewhere that recently featured on the Discovery Channel.
Some of these people might have found something genuine. An awful lot haven’t and very few people have any idea of how to present their thoughts. The result is a long rambling phone call with no clear purpose and it’s not till an hour in when they may start taking about an ice-free Antarctica that you know whether they’re mad or just enthusiastic. I have a limited number of heartbeats in my life and usually answering the phone for Clive is a good way to spend scores of them on conversations that go nowhere. So if now if I’m asked to take a call for Clive, I ask the secretaries to tell them I’m busy (though I’m rarely in the department to answer the phone anyway) and I’ll phone them back. It’s the simplest way to ignore someone.
How do you get around this?