See, antiques ARE fun.

One of the great things about working at the antique market is that I’ve discovered so many fun and fascinating gadgets. A few weeks ago, I was helping a customer look through a bulk jewellery tray and he asked, “Do you mind if I use my diamond tester on these rings?” And I was like, “A DIAMOND TESTER? I must see this!” So he pulled out this little device and touched the tip to one of the stones in a ring, and…nothing. But three rings later, a tiny alarm sounded. “I’ll take this one,” he smiled. I immediately went home and ordered not only my own diamond tester, but also a tester that distinguishes between natural diamonds and moissanite, which are lab-grown diamonds. The testers came the next day, and I gleefully went around the house testing all of our jewellery and discovered that a pair of earrings I’d never worn and just tossed in a drawer actually had diamond chips in them. I still won’t wear them because they’re not my style being all fancy and dangly (and no, that’s not my cool nickname) but it’s still good to find out. Then I took the testers to work but I didn’t find anything surprising because almost all the jewellery dealers have their own testers. Still, you never know your luck, like that customer.

Then a couple of weeks later, another customer was walking around with a tiny blacklight. “What’s that for?” I asked.

“Oh, I collect uranium glass. If you point a UV light at it, it fluoresces.” He showed me, by pointing it at a small green plate, which immediately turned neon. So guess what I immediately did? That’s right—ordered my own little blacklight from Amazon. And then I went through the house pointing it at stuff to see if any of my glassware glowed in the dark. And I was amazed to discover that my house is full of glassware made with uranium, like, for example, this innocuous little vase and the lamp next to it.


Apparently, I’m a hive of radioactivity, which might account for what I saw on LinkedIn this morning:

LinkedIn doesn’t have many uses, but it DOES tell you who’s been looking at your profile, and why the hell is some American Senator trying to suss out who the mysterious mydangblog could be?! I mean it says my actual name on my profile, and pictures of my books with my own damn name on it are right here on this website. Do they think I’m secretly running a nuclear power plant in small town Ontario?

U.S. Republican Senator 1: Forget Russia—we should be more worried about the Canadians. We’ve detected a substantial amount of uranium close to the border.
U.S. Republican Senator 2: Not surprising. They’re a bunch of commie pinkos up there.
U.S. Republican Senator 1: Call Ted Cruz. He used to be Canadian. Maybe he can reason with them.
U.S. Republican Senator 2: There’s no reasoning with those frosty bastards.

Aide: This just in, breaking news from Fox! The Canadian uranium stockpile is being kept in a house owned by someone named ‘mydangblog’ but who prefers to be called…(checks notes)…Player One!
U.S. Republican Senator 1: Ooh. That IS a cool nickname.

I guess if the U.S Army shows up at my door, I’d better hide all the antique glass.

In other news, it’s become so prevalent on Facebook Marketplace to advertise things as free and then list exorbitant prices in the description that if you actually HAVE something for free, you need to be extremely adamant about it, thusly:

And just to make it REALLY clear, this is what the item’s description says, in case there was any doubt:

I so badly wanted to be a frosty bastard and message the person: “How much is this?” But, truth be told, I don’t even know what the f*ck it is, and if it’s what’s in the picture, I don’t want his glowing wood clones–I can glow just fine on my own.

46 thoughts on “Radioactive

  1. Just be wary in case they send the decorated Colonel Cobb and his sciurine Seal team up north to confiscate your uranium! Fortunately, just like real Senators, they can be easily bribed with ample corn and other yummy treats…

    Liked by 4 people

  2. So are you going to get the free clones? Because then you’ll have, well, some sort of trifecta: diamonds, uranium, and clones. With all that you could start an interesting science museum. And I think that American senator was interested in you because you’ve found this stuff unintentionally. If you can amass a large uranium collection without even trying imagine what people who purposely collect it have.
    Something to watch out for, by the way, is a spinthariscope. Back in the ‘50’s and ‘60’s these were given away as toys. They’re little cylinders, sometimes bullet-shaped, that you could look into and see atomic activity. Think about that: kids were encouraged to put something radioactive up to their eye. Most old spinthariscopes don’t show anything anymore because the elements in them were so radioactive they’ve decayed. A little uranium glass doesn’t seem so bad by comparison.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. What the heck is a “free clone”? I sometimes wonder if they don’t hook you with exciting possibilities of who could be looking at your profile and want to hire you. But now that you brought that up, I could use a campaign manager…I can’t pay, but I can give tarot readings! Or free clones! (joking)

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yes, it’s really bizarre who it says has been looking at my profile sometimes, but I refuse to pay the Premium fee to “unlock my profile views”. If someone really wants to talk to me, they know where I live–it’s the house that glows in the dark!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Holy Violet Light!! I get excited when you explained the diamond tester and v black light because I began this obsession collecting vintage jewelry from the 50s and 60s and I bought this beautiful set that was sold as costume. But on each piece it states .925 sterling, so I took it to a local jewelry shop and they confirmed it’s sterling! Now I’m intrigued with that diamond tester! I’m glad I don’t have FB, those so called free things would annoy me.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. That conversation sounds exactly how our US Senators spend their time! LOL. What a riot. More likely Ted Cruz’s staffer is losing her mind and browsing the internet for entertainment. And I’d never heard of diamond testers and uranium glass. I learn something new with your every post. Thanks for the laughs, Suzanne.

    Liked by 4 people

  6. Ooh, very cool! I bought a blacklight when I purchased a yooperlite not long ago, and then a lady I met kayaking gifted me two more! Zoisite also fluoresces.. Unfortunately, when I bought the light I also found some cat pee I missed.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Wendy says:

    That misspelling is going to live long in my brain now that I’ve seen how fun furniture can be. Please do report back on the true effectiveness of the diamond tester dealio. That’s legit?

    Liked by 2 people

  8. The uranium glass is truly interesting. Wikipedia says uranium was first added to glass in the late 1700s! I’ll be reading about this for the rest of the evening, and I am serious. (You can imagine how much fun I am at cocktail parties.)

    Liked by 2 people

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