Curtis, thank you for your keen insight into this wonderful and mysterious issue. The annulet and style (given the two year gap) I can accept as possibly from Ephesus, but the types copied from Rome and the mules have always bothered me. As you have already pointed out those are not traits from that mint and do need an explanation, the two year gap in this case is not enough. Is it significant that a nearly contemporary issue of provincial silver was struck at Caesarea in Cappadocia? Perhaps we need to look further to the east for our mint?
Here's a big fish coin that slipped out of my hands today, which is probably just as well, since I'd have drowned trying to pay for it. I stopped bidding at ... an absolutely insanely high level. Someone else thought it worth even more than that, and kept going. For the record, several examples of this type have fetched even higher prices, despite being in not as excellent condition, this likely being the best known. I'm rather relieved that I didn't go even further. I'm building some new bookcases, and stopping short on another nice Roman coin will certainly help.