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  1. #46
    Co-Founder: Cortez Pearls Senior Guide Member CortezPearls's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lagoon Island Pearls View Post
    Checa alludes to the same thing. I've observed "spherules" in similar folds of the periostracum, but then again I am not convinced these give rise to pearls as a single factor in every instance. It seems more likely, perforations made in the mantle by these serve as a point of entry for parasites.
    Amen! And we should all be informed that this issue of "what causes a natural pearl to form" is far from being new...I am still looking for my old papers about a French Naturalist that explained natural pearl occurrence back in the 1800's...which I then have to translate (thank Google for its Translate feature!). But I hope to have a bit time to talk about this in the Blog in the upcoming months. Right now my hands are full (of pearls)
    Douglas McLaurin-Moreno
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    Your Life evolves in the same way a Pearl grows: with continuous layers of experiences/nacre that add to the Story of your Life on Earth and make you Unique and Beautiful.
    Douglas McLaurin-Moreno

  2. #47
    Inactive Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Quote Originally Posted by CortezPearls View Post
    Common sense and the ability to observe Nature without prejudice is a Science. You are as much a scientist as I am...and really: I am just a Pearl Farmer.
    Thank you kindly Doug. And yes, ecologist might be a word for the fun part. Labourer... the not so fun part.

    It's an Ed Ricketts thing. He was no scientist either.

  3. #48
    First-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member
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    This thread has been educational from a scientific standpoint, but it ruins the romance of pearls. I think anyone who is in the business of selling pearls should probably avoid discussions of parasites and drill worms. If people want to criticize Mr. Mikimoto for perpetuating the myth, I propose he simply had a good understanding of marketing. People don't open their wallets for parasites and worms unless they're at the doctor's office. The fairy tale of overcoming adversity, i.e., turning a rough grain of sand into something beautiful, is infinitely preferable.

    I don't know who said it first, but I've heard Alice Cooper say "Never let the facts get in the way of a good story," and in this instance, I think I agree.

  4. #49
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Quote Originally Posted by ennui View Post
    If people want to criticize Mr. Mikimoto for perpetuating the myth, I propose he simply had a good understanding of marketing.
    No one can possibly argue with that!
    Steve
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  5. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by ennui View Post
    If people want to criticize Mr. Mikimoto for perpetuating the myth, I propose he simply had a good understanding of marketing.
    I suppose dying cheap freshwater pearls and selling them as rare tahitians is a clever marketing strategy too, but without ethics or honesty, marketing under any other guise is merely a scam.

    I seriously doubt Mikimoto was a forthright marketer, insomuch he was monopolistic and manipulative.
    Last edited by Lagoon Island Pearls; 08-05-2011 at 11:42 PM.

  6. #51
    Pearl Maven Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Caitlin's Avatar
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    He certainly obscured the true history of how cultured pearls were developed. He refused credit to the originator of the method, and bought his patents from two men who learned directly from Saville-Kent, then stole the method by getting patents on it, in Japan, thus preventing Saville-Kent's own lab and true students from profiting in any way.

    There is nothing romantic about Mikimodo except in his marketing to the public. He was actually a kind of dictator who protected his purloined secrets from any perceived encroachment He was more of a Jay Gould than a romantic of any type.
    Caitlin

    How to hand-knot pearls without a tool

    My avatar is a Sea of Cortez mabe pearl. One of a pair of Mexican handmade earrings.

  7. #52
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lagoon Island Pearls View Post
    I seriously doubt Mikimoto was a forthright marketer, insomuch he was monopolistic and manipulative.
    Yes not all soft and fuzzy. I'm thinking of Steinway as a parallel and contemporary case (albeit natural dynamic systems have yet to demonstrate a tendency to spontaneously create a piano).
    Steve
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  8. #53
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Quote Originally Posted by Caitlin View Post
    He was more of a Jay Gould than a romantic of any type.
    And I enjoyed playing the beautiful gilded and hand-painted Steinway Model B grand produced for the Gould family in 1901 (commemorative serial #100,000), in a Tokyo restaurant about 10 years ago.

    Six degrees?
    Steve
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  9. #54
    Inactive Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Quote Originally Posted by ennui View Post
    This thread has been educational from a scientific standpoint, but it ruins the romance of pearls. I think anyone who is in the business of selling pearls should probably avoid discussions of parasites and drill worms.
    Please don't get me wrong ennui, as I'm not directing my comments at you personally, but only to example the perpetuity of such myths.

    This is the natural pearl section of a pearl forum. Although I have interest in pearl culture and sales, the mostpart of my expertise is the ecology of natural pearls.

    It's not just anywhere I'm able to freely discuss the nuiances of this field with other learned individuals, but this forum has provided a friendly and informative medium on the topic.

    This whole idea that all pearls must round, lusterous and perfect to be romantic or valuable only creates barriers to marketing novel and unique things. In recent times, we have seen new things souffle, circle pearls etc, and overall, people are becoming more aware of them. For everyone involved, this a good trend and we should be mindful to not fall back upon the old school rules.

    I refuse to let pearl culture overshadow my passion for naturals.

  10. #55
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lagoon Island Pearls View Post
    This whole idea that all pearls must round, lusterous and perfect to be romantic or valuable only creates barriers to marketing novel and unique things.
    I'm just finishing the classic Pearls and Men by Louis Kornitzer, the last great international pearl trader from the pre-cultured era. Perfection was so highly valued and the market so limited to the social elite that anything other than a round, button or drop pearl was practically valueless, or immediately sent to the 'pearl doctor' to see if its shape could be improved.

    We must thank the increasing ubiquitousness of perfection as represented by cultured pearls for a widening of the naturals market to baroques, and especially non-nacreous types (pearl counterfeiters are still able to fool the labs, but only with nacreous shells).
    Steve
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  11. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by smetzler View Post
    We must thank the increasing ubiquitousness of perfection as represented by cultured pearls for a widening of the naturals market to baroques, and especially non-nacreous types (pearl counterfeiters are still able to fool the labs, but only with nacreous shells).
    Of course. I'd be the first to admit I'm a pushover for an 8 way roller.

    It's an apple and oranges thing, when it comes to value, I suppose. The wonder of natural creation is every bit, if not more romantic than a commercial product.

    But that's just me.

  12. #57
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Can't resist repeating Kornitzer from his best and most entertaining book The Pearl Trader (1937):

    I cannot see how mankind would be the gainer if fine pearls were as plentiful as blackberries and as cheap; but all the same, the day may dawn when man learns to provoke the pearl-oyster in such a manner that an artificial nucleus will become superfluous. By that time, no doubt, the oysters may be so well behaved that they will turn out nothing but the most perfect gems.

    When that day comes, there will be no difference between the cultured pearl and the natural that is not to the advantage of the former. Shall I then?if I still exist?have become reconciled to the new order? I doubt it. There would undoubtedly occur in me one of those protracted and consuming inward struggles wherein reason armed with logic, the spirit of progress, and modernity, stand ranged against tradition, loyalty and romance.

    In the end, no doubt, romance would win the day. For the last time I should gather around me my precious natural beauties that no one would buy. From their midst I would select a few of the fairest and dissolve them in vinegar. With all the recklessness of Egypt?s queen I would then swallow the no longer costly brew in one long delirious gulp, but not without first pouring a generous and despairing libation to Venus Margaretifera. And then? Then the moment would have arrived for me to erase the word "pearl" from all the books on my shelves and die.
    Kornitzer, despite all his romance and deep respect for tradition, did seem to underestimate the universal and enduring validity of authenticity.
    Steve
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  13. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by smetzler View Post
    Kornitzer, despite all his romance and deep respect for tradition, did seem to underestimate the universal and enduring validity of authenticity.
    Indeed.

    It's interesting though, how he envisioned the onset of the freshwater pearl industry and the effect it's had on both marine culture and natural pearl markets.

    He's also right about the romance at the end of the day, though it often tends to be confused with affluence.

    The natural pearl market got it's just desserts by the over-exploitation many of the world's wild stocks. That bad rap from so many decades ago, still has a lingering effect on today's natural pearl industry. By and large, natural pearl collecting is not sustainable, but that doesn't mean all natural pearl collecting is.

    I quess my point being, the so-called "romantic" bar has been set so high, the wonder of natural pearls have been overshadowed by how they are expected to appear. This might sound funny, even contradictory from someone developing pearl culture techniques, but I pride myself on the fact my naturals are produced in a sustainable manner with proper regulatory oversight.

  14. #59
    Co-Founder: Cortez Pearls Senior Guide Member CortezPearls's Avatar
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    "...and the Truth Shall Set You Free". To me this is what it is all about. Mikimoto may have been a great businessman...but perpetuating or starting a myth that does the opposite of the truth is what some people call a "Lie". Lies chain you to ignorance. And this is true in politics, religion and even marketing.
    Let us all break these chains of ignorance once and for all...
    Douglas McLaurin-Moreno
    Co-Founder Cortez Pearl Farm
    Guaymas, Sonora, Mexico
    Website: www.perlas.mx
    Douglas McLaurin's Blog
    Sustainable Cortez Pearl Jewelry: www.perlas.mx
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    Your Life evolves in the same way a Pearl grows: with continuous layers of experiences/nacre that add to the Story of your Life on Earth and make you Unique and Beautiful.
    Douglas McLaurin-Moreno

  15. #60
    First-graft Pearl Senior Member
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    Lightbulb Each new person should read this thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Caitlin View Post
    Yes. Douglas deserves to go viral with this video- at least within the pearl world!!
    The video that shows how Oysters dispatch sand out of their shells is fascinating to watch as well as how thoroughly the mollusks rid the sand quickly. If new to Pearl Guide this in a must for all to observe. I realize this thread is from 2011, yet it proves how Mother Nature is efficient.

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