Archive for the ‘Language and animals’ Category

Caribou with a pair

March 14, 2019

From Chris Waigl on the 10th, this bulletin from Alaska, the 2/24 Nuggets cartoon by Jamie Smith (inksnow.blogspot.com) in her local paper, the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner:

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[Chris:] [Since the cartoon is set in Alaska]  the animals depicted presumably are caribou (NOT reindeer). Note that in caribou, females have antlers, often quite elaborate ones.

Also [since it’s illegal to kill caribou cows, but legal to hunt bulls,] the Alaska Department of Fish and Game has a remarkable multi-page illustrated leaflet about sexing caribou in the wild [here]

Ok: the idiom grow a pair; antlers on female caribou/reindeer; the distinction between caribou and reindeer; and as a bonus, an Ink & Snow blog posting “Bear Den” from 3/10 on the use of trademarked characters in cartoons.

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The didactyl anteater, Anteater D, aka The Antedater

March 3, 2019

It began five months ago, on ADS-L, the American Dialect Society mailing list, with a note from the compiler of the Yale Book of Quotations about a piece he’d recently published:

Fred R. Shapiro, Confessions of the Antedater. Dictionaries: Journal of the Dictionary Society of North America 39.1.23-42 (2018).

An engaging and informative essay about finding earlier and earlier citations for English words and phrases. At the time, ADS-Ler Mark Mandel exclaimed:

At first I saw it as “Confessions of an Anteater”!

and Larry Horn chimed in:

Me too … Indeed, my mailer tells me that when I type “antedater” I really meant “anteater”.  Maybe someone should work on a logo

I seconded the suggestion, but then no one did anything until Fred’s piece came up again yesterday, and everybody made the same misreading again — and I came up not with a logo, but with a mascot, an Anteater With a D, the adorable little Silky Anteater didactylus.

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Another hybrid food, no portmanteau name

March 3, 2019

Today’s mailing from bon appétit magazine leads with a hybrid food:

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(#2) Normally, you’d expect the hybrid food to come with a corresponding cute portmanteau name, but not this time

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Age cannot wither them

February 11, 2019

Today’s Zippy has Griffy and Zippy marveling, once again, that almost all cartoon characters, themselves included, never seem to age. In particular, Nancy and Sluggo are always and forever 8 years old — in Cartoonland, where age cannot wither them (nor custom stale their infinite variety). But in Ivan Albright’s art world, even Nancy, sturdy Nancy, grows old:

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Aquatic carpentry

February 5, 2019

A Wayno & Piraro Bizarro from the 4th, presenting an exercise in cartoon understanding and jogging some reflections on comics conventions:


(#1) (If you’re puzzled by the odd symbols in the cartoon — Dan Piraro says there are 3 in this strip — see this Page.)

To understand the cartoon, you need to appreciate that it shows a situation from everyday life (the office of a carpentry business)  juxtaposed with, or translated into, another, more remarkable, world (an undersea, aquatic, world, populated by specific fish, which you need to recognize).

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A camelid from darkest Peru

January 29, 2019

A souvenir from Juan Gomez, who visited Peru (Cuzco, Machu Picchu) with his family for the New Year’s holiday: a little stuffed llama I’ve named Glama Grrl (he’s seen here perched high in the spathyphyllum forest on my worktable):

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The Peruvian camelid has been exploited for all sorts of word play purposes, perhaps most famously in the light verse of Ogden Nash, but also in joking that turns on the fact that the element llam– has (at least) three separate sources in Spanish (referring to the camelid, to fire or flames, and to calling (out)). Glama Grrl will then lead us to the original traveler from darkest Peru, Paddington Bear.

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Phil comes out

January 28, 2019

Stewart Matzek’s Amateur Hour Comics for Groundhog Day:

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Squirrely

January 22, 2019

On the serious side, yesterday was Martin Luther King Jr. Day, while on the silly side, it was Squirrel Appreciation Day.


(#1) Get Squirrely (also distributed as A.C.O.R.N.S.: Operation Crack Down and Voll Auf Die Nuss) is an American animated film produced by John H. Williams (through Vanguard Animation) and Dan Krech and directed by Ross Venokur. Released on November 4, 2016 [voices by Jason Jones, Will Forte, John Leguizamo, Samantha Bee, Victoria Justice, John Cleese, Jim Cummings] (Wikipedia link)

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Know your Prideful polarites

January 20, 2019

From Chris Waigl on Facebook yesterday, this

VERY IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT

Pride in Polar Research wishes everyone a happy #PenguinAwarenessDay 2019! You can never be too aware of #Penguins! #LGBTQ #Science

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The poetry corner

January 19, 2019

Into the lull between Thesaurus Day (the 18th) and Penguin Awareness Day (the 20th), I thrust two bits of poetry taking off from images on Facebook: Make Big Money (brought to me by Kyle Wohlmut) and The Long Room, Trinity College, Dublin (brought to me by Joelle Stepien Bailard):

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