43-year-old “urban gold miner” Raffi Stepanian of Queens: Got a Hobby?

by Accidental Bear

There’s gold in them thar sidewalk cracks!

A Queens man has discovered enough hidden treasure — bits of diamonds, rubies, platinum and gold — on the gritty sidewalks of Midtown’s Diamond District to make a living.

GOLD DIGGER OF 2011: Using a pair of tweezers, Raffi Stepanian picks a tiny precious stone out of a gutter in the Diamond District.
“The streets of 47th Street are literally paved with gold,” a giddy Raffi Stepanian, 43, of Whitestone told The Post last week when a reporter discovered him on all fours — armed with tweezers and a butter knife — digging through cracks in the sidewalk in a driving rainstorm.

The freelance diamond setter explained that he was sifting through “very valuable” New York City mud for tiny diamond and ruby chips, bits of platinum, white-gold industrial loops for jewelry assembly, and gold earring backs and loops from broken chains, watches, broaches and necklaces — all carelessly dropped and now his to mine.

(via www.nypost.com)

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