Welcome to the Bent Trowel!

The Bent Trowel is a satirical archaeology periodical.  It was formed to give a public forum to those who feel there is a need to poke a little fun at the serious sorts of the field.  Please join in!

Please read our current edition (and peruse our previous ones) in the "Editions" page linked at the left.

Feel free to direct any questions or comments to us directly: theBentTrowel@gmail.com


The Bent Trowel Staff

Please Help!

Please help us distribute hard copies at the S.A.A. meetings.  Each copy costs us 60¢ to put out.  Your donations go to pay for printing costs.  We volunteer to put this out and do not collect any money for ourselves.  Please donate:


Bent Trowel Submission Deadline: December 14th! (Posted November 16th, 2012)
It is that time again.  You know, the time where we ask for submissions and promise to put out a new edition soon.  We are excited to have a break in the weather, so to speak, and are collecting submissions for our next edition, due out January 1st, 2013.  You know, if the world hasn't collapsed by then.

Please send us your articles, reviews, questions for our advice columnist, horoscope, winter survival tactics, favourite recipes, state secrets, etc.

You can find our submission guide on our website: sites.google.com/site/thebenttrowel/

V.G. Chilly et al.

Bent Trowel Submission Deadline: September 1st! (Posted June 22nd, 2011)
Greetings from the doldrums* of summer fieldwork,
We, the Bent Trowel staff, hope that you are having a productive and safe summer season. We are smack-dab in the middle of our respective boondoggles** and are wasting our time on anything besides the matter at hand. Therefore, we would like to cordially invite you to submit an article, a news short, crossword clues, corrections, or what have you for our next edition, due out this fall. The deadline for submission is September 1st, and you can find our Submission Guide (as well as past editions etc.) in the Navigation bar to the left.

Yours archaeologically,

V.G. Chilly et al.

*otherwise known as the "Intertropical Convergence Zone"
** a term originating during the New-Deal-era in the states.

The Sixth Edition! (Posted March 28th, 2011)
Our sixth edition of the Bent Trowel is out.  This time we have articles on SAA presentations, the last Indiana Jones Movie, and Sacramento's pre-meeting preparations.  Check out a new cartoon and useful map of downtown Sacramento, California.  We have also finagled some deals for you at the conference: Free Appetizers at Brew it Up! Bar and Grill and 15 percent off lunch at Pyramid Alehouse (see page 1 for details).

Look for the hard copies our minions will be distributing at the meetings.
Travel safely and enjoy the camaraderie, tweed, and flannel in Sacramento!

Our Fifth Edition! (Posted February 3rd, 2011)

Here it is, almost on time, the fifth edition of the Bent Trowel.  This Maya-themed edition h
as articles describing the different types of Maya archaeologists, a plea for understanding about the 2012 phenomenon, Indiana Jones's tenure assessment letter, and more. 

There are also opinion pieces from epigraphers in response to the letter that appeared in our fourth edition, and an editorial response, which reads, in part, "Clearly there are problems in modern archaeology if people cannot openly express their thoughtful opinions without fear of personal retribution."  Don't miss it.

In other news, we have begun to shamelessly ask for donations.  Unlike the Hummer-driving fat cats at N.P.R. and P.B.S., we do not keep these donations for ourselves.  Instead, we use them to pay for printing hard copies of the Trowel at the S.A.A. meetings.
Click on the link below and donate.  We suggest that you give us half of your annual salary, but what do we know?

What's next, you ask, besides the fact that we are whoring ourselves out to provide you hard copies at the Meetings?  Well, of course we need articles to publish.  Please send us your best submission, or at least something passable, by March 16th, 2011 so we can include your missive in the next edition, which, as I have mentioned three times in the last minute, will be printed and distributed in Sacramento.

Our Fourth Edition! (Posted November 7th, 2010)
Loads of great articles again, if we do say so ourselves.  We have an expose on Ardi, information on defunct archaeological organizations, a feature from Egyptastic, a shot across the bow of Maya epigraphers, and much more.

Video Blog Up and Running!
Please check out our new video blog!  You can find it in the sidebar to the left.

Possible Bent Trowel Happy Hour and Symposium!
We have an eye on the upcoming SAA meetings in Sacramento.  Although we could not get a proper symposium slot, we do not see that as an impediment to us hosting a short session.  Instead of the stuffy confines of the Sacramento Convention Center, we will be searching out a bar that might give us a special Bent happy hour.  More information will follow!

Next Edition: Maya Bonanza!
Are you a Mayanist?  Do you know a Mayanist?  Have you heard of the Maya?  Our fifth edition will concentrate on this area.  We feel that the Maya area has been neglected in terms of scholarship, funding, and public interest.  Let's rectify this!  Send us movie reviews, articles, opinions, clues for the crossword, a horoscope, questions for our experts, or what have you.  We want to put this out soon, so please have your submission in by the end of this calendar year!  Check out our submission guide on our website.

Submission Deadline: December 11th (Posted November 23rd, 2009)
Just on the heels of our third edition we are looking for submissions for the fourth.  You need not write a lengthy article to submit something to us.   News shorts, horoscope predictions, "Ask the Bent Trowel" questions, and crossword puzzle clues (and answers) are ways you can participate with a minimum of time commitment.  We are also increasing our "News" coverage with short articles covering current events in archaeology.  Is there something going on that strikes your funny bone?  Let us hear it.  Of course we do welcome feature-length articles (2-3 letter-sized pages double spaced) for the more intrepid submitter.

We are especially interested in thoughts and opinions on Ardi for the next edition.
You can find our submission guide here: http://sites.google.com/site/thebenttrowel/submissions
The deadline is December 11th, 2009.

Third Edition Out! (Posted October 28th, 2009)
Finally, our third edition is out!  In this edition you will find articles on the social aspects of waste disposal, new exciting field methods from Yucatan, and news stories from Egypt and Canada, eh?

Please pass this along.  We suggest going to your mailbox, clicking "select all" and forwarding this edition to everybody you have ever emailed.  Then you should spend an hour or so each day finding archaeologists you don't know yet and sending them the Bent Trowel.  That's all we ask...

There are two other things we would like to bring to your attention.

1) Our next edition will deal with Ardi, so please send in your opinion piece, news article, photoshopped Ardi pictures, or anything else you would like.

2) We would like to put out the Trowel more often.  We depend on your submissions to do it.  If you want to see more Trowel, please send us an article, a news short, crossword puzzle clues, horoscopes, an original cartoon, or what have you.  Do you know somebody you think might like to write something for us?  Please pass this along to him or her.  We really appreciate everybody who takes the time to help get the Bent Trowel out.  Check out our submission guide through the link to the left.

Thank you and enjoy!
The Bent Trowel Staff

Submission Deadline: August 10th (posted: June 16th, 2009)
It is currently the low season for paperwork and writing for many of us connected with academics.  Nevertheless, we are forging ahead with our next edition.  We hope to have it out around the begin of September.

We are looking for submissions for all sections, so please don´t be shy.  We are especially interested in reviews of SAA sessions.  Please send us your articles, cartoons, horoscopes, classified ads, and so on by Monday, August 10th, 2009.  Please find our submission guide in the navigation pane to the left.

We look forward to hearing from you and putting out our next edition.

Second Edition Out! (posted: April 10th, 2009)
Ladies and Gents,
Our second edition, hot of the electronic press, straight to your computer.  We hope you enjoy our special SAA edition with a guide to the meetings and in-depth interviews.  We also have articles about masculine archaeology, archaeological expertness, and the Tulane Maya Symposium.

As always, we are driven by your submissions.  Please keep them coming.
Please feel free to forward this on to all your friends, acquaintances, and strangers.

V. Gordon Chilly and the Bent Trowel staff.

P.S. We will be distributing a limited number of hard copies at the Meetings and are looking for sponsors to defray the cost.  Let us know if you are interested.

April Fools Stimulus Funding? (posted: April 2nd, 2009)
Yesterday we posted information on stimulus funding for archaeologists.  The website with the restrictions and application information had over 100 hits! Huzzah.

The next edition should be out soon!  Stay tuned.

Social Networking (posted: March 12th, 2009)

The Bent Trowel is now a member of the Archaeology Network, www.archaeology-network.com, and Facebook, www.facebook.com.  Check it out!  Be our friend!

Also, the next Trowel will be out in early April.  We will have a special Society for American Archaeology section with a guide to the meetings.

Lastly, the deadline for submissions is fast approaching.  Please email us soon if you would like your work included in the next edition.

Submission Deadline: March 16th (posted: February 2nd, 2009)
We hope you enjoyed our first edition of the Bent Trowel and were able to pass it on to other colleagues.  We are now in the midst of compiling our second edition, tentatively due out in early April.  We still have room for submissions and will be accepting them until March 16th.

Please do not hesitate to send us an article, a question for our advice column, clues for our crossword, or any type of submission.

Please check our submission sections for a guide and send all articles to