Indiana Jones' Journal Mystery Disappointingly Solved

Indiana Jones' Journal Mystery Disappointingly Solved

Abner Ravenwood had nothing to do with the journal delivered at the University of Chicago.

Just to get you up to speed, the University of Chicago received a mysterious package in the mail last week addressed to Henry Walton Jones, Jr. - yeah, that Dr. Jones. The package contained a spot-on replica of the journal of Ravenwood that Indiana Jones used in Raiders of the Lost Ark. The envelope had the correct address, with the zip code handwritten it, and there were postal marks and stamps that made it look like it had an Egyptian origin. Theories as to what the package meant flew across the interwebs - Is this an ARG marketing another movie? Was it some student's crazy application? - and the University of Chicago set up an email tip line to discover what they could and did some digging on their own. Much to everyone's collective dismay, the journal was apparently created by a prop replica artist named Paul Charfauros, who lives in Guam. The mysterious package was just one of his Ebay transactions lost in the mail on its way to a buyer in Italy.

The package had an exterior box, but the shell was damaged and removed. Inside was the manila envelope with the fake Egyptian postage and the incomplete address of the University of Chicago on it. "Somewhere between Guam and Italy the replica fell out of its original external package and was lost in Honolulu, Hawaii," reported Garrett Brinker, director of undergraduate outreach at the University of Chicago. "Then for some reason, with fake postage, no tracking, not even a zip code - it looks like the Postal Service had to manually write in a zip code on the package - somehow without all of that, the package landed in our laps in Chicago, Illinois."

Paul Charfauros received a letter from the Post Office in Hawaii which informed him that one of his packages had been damaged. Around the same time, Brinker contacted him to ask whether the journal was his. So it wasn't a massive ARG or a publicity stunt by the new LucasFilm owners Disney to revitalize the Indiana Jones property. It was just something lost in the mail. Sigh.

Well, Charfauros said he was making his customer in Italy a new journal and that the University of Chicago was welcome to keep the one they mistakenly received. "It will find its home either in the Oriental Institute at UChicago or the Special Collections at the Regenstein Library," read the University's Tumblr updating the situation. "Because, as many have noted, 'It belongs in a museum!'."

That sounds about right.

Source: Wired

Permalink

Stories like this make me happy. The world is a very, very silly place

Well gee, that's disappointing......like Kingdom of the Crystal Skull-level disappointing.

Still, at least it could inspire some other creative mail - maybe someone could send Ghostbusters props to Columbia University.

I wanna see a video of that package flying from place to place on a map Indiana Jones style. Using special effects that were amazing 20 years ago.

Also. Haven't you guys seen Indiana Jones. It is never an obvious answer. That Italian guy must be up to something. STALK HIM AT ONCE!!

I dunno, this sounds pretty awesome to me. I would have been VERY disappointed if it had been a stupid marketing stunt. I love the fact that all these random things lined up for the package to arrive at the University of Chicago; this is probably even better than if it had been a student's creative application.

In other news, I now suspect the Mystery Carrier Pigeon was actually a replica pigeon that ended up in the wrong house when the Floo Network messed up.

wottabout:
I dunno, this sounds pretty awesome to me. I would have been VERY disappointed if it had been a stupid marketing stunt. I love the fact that all these random things lined up for the package to arrive at the University of Chicago; this is probably even better than if it had been a student's creative application.

In other news, I now suspect the Mystery Carrier Pigeon was actually a replica pigeon that ended up in the wrong house when the Floo Network messed up.

I second this. Marketing is boring, we half expected it. But now, to find out its true happenstance, it is fascinating.

WTF? Why would anyone be disappointed by this turn of events.
It seems like a pretty cool chain of happenstance events.
It would've been disappointing if it'd turned out to be some sort of successful attempt to fool a university into providing free marketing for a re-release of Crystal Skull, or something like that.

Serendipity for the win, any day, over cynical marketing ploys.

This isn't disappointing at all. This shows how awesome the post office is at delivering mail.

Someone makes replica movie-prop mail which turns out so convincing that the postal service ends up trying its very best to actually deliver it to Indiana Jones? This story is just plain awesome!

Eeeh.. Maybe I'm not an Indiana jones fan but lucky them I guess

And that ebay guy will probably experience an upswing in people buying his stuff.

Eh, ah well. I suppose it could have been worse (even if I can't think of any way it could be)...

So...

Guy makes an awesome movie replica --> Guy sends the replica to the customer --> package gets destroyed --> post office does everything in their power to deliver the package --> mission accomplished --> awesome movie replica is so awesome it's taken seriously --> scientists baffled --> mystery solved! --> movie replica ends up in the museum!

I can't think of anything that is not awesome in this story. From the guy doing such a good job on a movie prop it stumped the scientists, through post office being so determined to deliver the mail to the thing ending in the museum. It's really a wonderful, and quite heart-warming story. Even moreso now, with Christmas season in full swing. Post is.... well. Going postal. And they still delivered.

thats actually a pretty cool story...not what I'd call disapointing

wottabout:
I dunno, this sounds pretty awesome to me. I would have been VERY disappointed if it had been a stupid marketing stunt. I love the fact that all these random things lined up for the package to arrive at the University of Chicago; this is probably even better than if it had been a student's creative application.

In other news, I now suspect the Mystery Carrier Pigeon was actually a replica pigeon that ended up in the wrong house when the Floo Network messed up.

I agree with you completely. This story turned out a lot better than I thought it would.

I'm sure they'll have top men working on it.

So the moral of this story is that the postal service doesn't really check postage all that closely? Actually, come to think of it, it probably cost the prop maker more per stamp than it would have to simply buy stamps.

Why is this disappointing? It just means that random events aren't always disastrous and depressing.
Sometimes, cool shit happens.

busterkeatonrules:
Someone makes replica movie-prop mail which turns out so convincing that the postal service ends up trying its very best to actually deliver it to Indiana Jones? This story is just plain awesome!

My thoughts exactly. What a fun ending to an intriguing tale.

Loethlin:
So...

Guy makes an awesome movie replica --> Guy sends the replica to the customer --> package gets destroyed --> post office does everything in their power to deliver the package --> mission accomplished --> awesome movie replica is so awesome it's taken seriously --> scientists baffled --> mystery solved! --> movie replica ends up in the museum!

Pretty awesome according to me.
And that it actually went to that adress :D
Pretty skillful work form the replicant I guess :)

I'm now half tempted to commission this prop maker to fashion me some items! If the quality is good enough to fool the postal service then he's clearly doing something right

I don't get why this news post was written as such a downer. This is hilariously wonderful, the post office actually delivered a letter to INDIANA JONES entirely sincerely, and you're disappointed that it wasn't a marketing stunt for another Indie movie? You saw the last one right? With the fridge and the monkeys? This is a way more amusing turn of events.

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here