Beard shown actual size.
In 1977, a seven year old kid named Hans Fex did something other than exist with the actual name Hans Fex. He saw some artifacts his father, Dr. Jörgen Fex (a name somehow even more clutch than Hans Fex), had brought back from Malta embedded in resin, and got the idea for the Mini Museum — a collection of precious artifacts combined in a compact display, perfect for the average nerd’s home. It only took 35 years and the invention of Kickstarter for Hans to bring his idea to fruition, and with three weeks still left to go on the campaign, it’s already been funded at 20 times its goal price.
Here’s how you get yourself some dinosaur DNA for your desktop:
First, you have to decide: Small, Medium, or Large? A “small” mini museum is a 2-inch by 3-inch collection of 11 artifacts, which includes a moon rock, dinosaur poop, and dirt from Dracula’s castle. (Unknown is exactly how much Transylvanian soil is necessary to keep your vampire charged.)
The largest-sized mini museum (4″x5″) will include all the goodies — bricks from Lincoln’s house, bits of the Titanic, dinosaur bones, and part of the command module from Apollo 11 — but that’ll set you back $239. Of course, how can you really say an iPhone 5 is more valuable than a piece of a mummy, or a mammoth’s hair? I mean, what if you get into black magic and the only thing that’s gonna give you true wizard powers is a rock from Mars? You’d feel like a dummy, that’s what.
Each “museum” is a one inch thick piece of resin with shards of these specimens embedded and labeled accordingly. What’s cool is that, while some of this stuff was purchased from other collectors, a lot of these things were acquired by Fex himself over the last 30 years. It makes this less of a corny ThinkGeek trinket (though Fex was previously involved with designing for GeekLabs), and more of a piece of art, really. Each signed and numbered museum is a part of his life’s work, which is almost as cool as owning radioactive glass from the first nuclear test.
I’m usually kind of difficult to shop for, but if anyone’s looking for ideas: shards of meteorites and a human brain is a good start. (And you can get that one in the “medium” size, for $179.) If you tell me you purchased it from a guy named Hans with a big red beard, it makes the thought more than count. It makes it magical. And possibly Viking in origin.