The Olmec Heads

In October 1974, we decided to go on an adventure to Mexico in our pop-top VW Van. We even took some classes at Northridge College on the Pre-Columbian history of Mexico. Among graduate students, we both became the best students in the class. The professor knew we were planning an extensive trip to Mexico and intended to visit as many Pre-Columbian sites as we could. He warned us to be especially careful because we would be exploring areas not necessarily open to “gringos.” It was typical of the way we traveled, far from the beaten paths.

So, this is not a detail of our daily adventures but the strange events that began at dusk on a rainy night on the fringe of San Lorenzo south of Vera Cruz. We had begun looking for an off-road site to camp for the night when we saw several large Olmec Heads behind a wrought iron fence. Because we had studied them as students, we immediately pulled over so we could walk the fence and see the Heads. The gate to the outdoor museum opened, and a tall man in a white shirt with rolled-up sleeves came out.

He said, “I was waiting for you. Come, and I will walk with you and tell the history of my heads.” He was the museum’s curator and, as we were to discover, so much more. (GOOGLE OLMEC HEADS.)

He took us on an amazing journey with a big flashlight. The Olmec Heads stood 6ft high and were as wide as they were tall. During our “tour,” Lenette and I watched in astonishment as the eyes of the heads appeared to follow us as we walked among them. The Olmec Heads seemed to come alive as he spoke; they were looking at us as we looked at them!

After the walk and talk, I invited him to join us for dinner in the village. Things became even stranger as we walked through the village. As it had stopped raining, people were coming out for the evening. As we passed by them, we saw the villagers offering our host the respect one might pay a King. They literally bowed as we walked by them.


Author: Sy Ogulnick

Sy Ogulnick received a BA from UCLA, Teacher’s Credential from Los Angeles Board of Education and completed phase I (Master’s portion) in a Doctor of Behavioral Science program at California Coast University. Sy leased and operated a summer day camp in LA. He and his wife then purchased virgin wilderness land in Northern CA, where they built and operated a coed summer camp. They moved to Las Vegas, NV, and purchased, built and operated a community children’s program for families staying in a major resort casino in Las Vegas. They have created programs for children nationwide that employed many people and in the process developed successful training programs for personnel. This led Sy to lecture on how to train staff and the creating of community within the workplace. Sy was then invited to speak at professional conferences on how best to hire and train employees, which led to his becoming a consultant in the art of improving relationships in a work environment and eventually to his epiphany that “Leaders are the primary problem and the answer to the personnel issues that arise in the workplace.” Sy has written numerous papers on the subject of interpersonal relationships, leadership and power. He has lectured throughout the United States, has been interviewed by the media and has appeared on many radio and TV talk shows

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