When I picked Cynthia up from work on Monday she was carrying an empty 40oz plastic pretzel jar. I asked her what it was for and she proudly announced that she was going to make a terrarium out of it.

As we drove home we talked about the project and I suggested getting a lizard to put in the terrarium. She suggested a frog. We both quickly recognized that this was a recipe for disaster. I then suggested a fake plastic lizard or frog. Cynthia didn’t really like that idea so much and as the conversation unfolded she came up with the idea of staging a diorama of an alien spaceship abducting someone in the woods. I countered that maybe it should be a diorama of an alien spaceship abducting a cow.

Cynthia liked this idea. I said we could call it a “diorarium” (pronounced die-a-rare-ee-um) to which Cynthia immediately said “no” due to the unpleasantness of how the word sounded.

I told her I had a perfect UFO in the form of a die cast model of the Jupiter II from the original Lost In Space TV series. I also suggested we could probably find some plastic cows at the toy store.

As the plan unfolded we I came up with the idea that we could go to the model shop where I was sure we could find some N Scale cows used for scenery in model railroading. They ended up having the PERFECT cows.

Then it was just a matter of getting the plants, the soil, activated carbon and gravel to build the terrarium part of the diorarium (by day two Cynthia embraced this as the name of what we were creating).

With all the parts assembled we had to figure out how to suspend the spaceship and the cow being abducted. I went to the hardware store and purchased some monofilament fishing line which ended up being perfect.

If it works as it is supposed to we should not have to open it or water it again, or at least for a very long time.

Here is the completed project. As it turns out, photographing a fake UFO abducting a fake cow inside a plastic jar presents many of the same challenges as photographing the real thing. If the real thing actually exists. Which it probably does. (shhhh!)

Diorarium 5

Diorarium 4

Diorarium 2

Diorarium 3


12 thoughts on “Diorarium

  • January 25, 2011 at 9:45 am

    I want to believe in your diorarium!

  • January 25, 2011 at 9:45 am

    You are *such* a dork and I mean that as a very sincere compliment.

  • January 25, 2011 at 9:46 am

    Do you guys watch Sunday Morning on CBS? This past Sunday (or maybe last week) they had a piece on terrariums. It kinda made me want to create one too.

  • January 25, 2011 at 9:47 am

    I’m with Cynthia, diorama sounds like something you’d take medicine for! I like terrarama!

    If you put this on Etsy/eBay I bet a million people would want it, wicked cool.

  • January 25, 2011 at 9:51 am

    I don’t even know where to start describing just how awesome this is. wow. #amazed

  • January 25, 2011 at 10:53 am

    Cool! Well done!

  • January 25, 2011 at 11:42 am

    Too cool. Support could have been done with a green-colored, cone-shaped piece of plex, as a tractor beam, supporting the ship and the suspended cow. Again way too cool.

  • January 26, 2011 at 4:14 pm

    I am willing to bet that this is not a real fake UFO. I am willing to bet you Photoshopped the whole thing, just to get us more gullible types to believe you have a real, tiny, fake UFO. I am NOT BUYING IT!!!!! My foil hat makes me immune to your mind control rays, so don’t try that either. Nutcase…

  • January 31, 2011 at 11:55 pm

    This is SO incredibly AWESOME!

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