This past week I spent the day with a friend at the American Museum of Natural History. One of the exhibitions currently running is regarding food worldwide. The exhibit discussed historical perspectives as well as the future of food safety and availability. It is great and helped me to be even more excited about my own research. One of the really cool things they had as part of the exhibit were scent machines. These devices looked like something out of a Dr. Seuss book and when you pressed a button an aroma would be released. They had scents like chocolate, ginger, garlic, and lavender. I know there were more, but these are what I remember. Another part included representational displays of meals. Some of the meals were historical and included Jane Austin and a Mongol leader. Other meals represented famous people including Michael Phelps; who eats at breakfast what I eat all day and has since made me consider becoming an athlete just so I can eat so much food!
I wandered other areas of the museum including, of course, the Margaret Mead Hall. Margaret Mead is a famous American anthropologist whose most famous work, _Coming of Age in Samoa_, helped to fuel the sexual revolution of the 1960’s and 1970’s. She directed the construction of the exhibit which still proudly wears her mark. I doubt that most visitors know who Margaret Mead is today (she dies quite some time ago), but the big draw now is the large Easter Island Head at the end of the Hall. This artifact was featured in the movie, Night at the Museum, and is the subject of many tourist photos now. I believe it has eclipsed the fame of Margaret Mead!
Here is a photo from outside where they decorated for the holiday season with these fun topiary: