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photo copyright � 1987 by Elaine Radford, all rights reserved

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Drool on my personal collection of stones by clicking right here.


By public demand, and after a delay of an embarrassing number of years, I've finally put my notorious essay, Ender and Hitler: Sympathy for the Superman, free on the fabulous internets.

A bibliography of my published books and stories.

Here's a simple card-counting FAQ to get you up to speed on the basics. Here's the true story of the notorious DD' blackjack team, told for the first time on the fabulous internets. No other team went from a starting investor's bankroll of zero to winning millions of dollars.


A Sadean take on Asimov's classic Three Laws of Robotics can be found in Roger Williams' NOW REVIEWED ON SLASHDOT!!! The Metamorphosis of Prime Intellect. Adult readers only please -- explicit sex and violence. For updates on the "Dead Tree Project" and other topics, you may visit the official fan site, Passages in the Void..


Visit Peachfront's Cookbook, for recipes that are fast, cheap, and good. A work in progress.

My Bird Lists -- My Louisiana State Life List, My Yard List and, tah dah, My World Life List.


HEY! What happened to the Peachfront Conure Files? The world's only OFFICIAL Peachfront Conure site now features free peachfront conure coverage, including a magazine length Intro to Conures previously published in American Cage-Bird Magazine, now free on the web. I offer the best free Peachfront Conure information on the internet. If you have great Peachfront Conure info, stories, or photos to share, contact me so I can publicize your pet, your breeding success, your great photograph, etc. on my site. Thanks.







page 27 of the online mineral museum: a shout-out to the ruby clan

2011-03-20 - 10:16 a.m.


2011 by elaine radford

I've got a decent-sized collection of different ruby specimens. As with the Beryl/Emerald family, I've got metaphysical and rockhound grade stones here, not stones that need to be secured in a vault because they're worth scadzillions of dollars.

My favorite piece of specimen is not well-shaped but I like it how flashes in its stand:

I got it in an estate with a hodgepodge of other stones, and I don't know its origin.

Here's some material from North Carolina:

You can sometimes cut pink, gray, or even red "star" rubies out of this rough, but I think I sold most of the best stuff.

Check out these Ruby crystals. The very large one on the left, and the two smaller ones in the center are from Pakistan. Back in the day, you could actually get some huge, honking Ruby crystals from Pakistan for very cheaply if you're looking for size rather than quality. The final crystal, on the right, with the light green matrix on it is a material called "Watermelon ruby," which comes as very nicely shaped hexagonal nuggets of Ruby growing in the green saussurite crust. I have cut and polished several of these stones, and I even experimented with my putting one of them in my first groove wire-wrap, as seen in the photo below:

Not gem-grade Rubies by any means, but excellent examples of how Ruby Crystals grow.

Another material I've been cutting is the scraps of a material that I used to sell by the pound, called Ruby in Zoisite. Source: Tanzania. The zoisite matrix is soft and hard to get a nice polish on it, but I'm doing OK with the 50,000 wheel. Since I wholesaled the stuff at $5 a pound, I'm suffering a bit of seller's remorse, but I'm still finding enough small pieces to work up some nice gems. Stay tuned.

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Adults with a sense of humor are invited to visit my Bourbon Street Mardi Gras 2011 page by clicking on the photograph below:

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