Archive for the ‘Language and animals’ Category

Formicavore home cooking

October 19, 2021

Today’s Wayno/Piraro Bizarro strip (Wayno’s title: “Dietary Restrictions”), with a culinary misstep:


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

There’s a lot to talk about here: the gendering of the two characters in #1; the Bizarro theme of anteaters and food; fire ants; hot and spicy food; the art of anteaters (it’s not just Bizarro).

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He enjambed me

September 24, 2021

To end a difficult week — ending high with a new water heater (thank you, cute and earnest plumber!), after four days without hot water; disconcerted by those same four days of failing to capture and expel the western fence lizard that has taken refuge in my house; and dispirited by those same four days without any voice to, um, speak of — I stumbled once again upon the peculiar practice of Rick-rolling (Facebook, unbidden, brings you all sorts of things, the way a cat will with not-quite-dead mice). And was impelled to some mildly scandalous free verse, which I will explain none of, because there’s just too much.

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Cockateal crotches

September 18, 2021

(Male bodyparts, sex between men, visually right up against the line, so entirely unsuitable for kids and the sexually modest.)

From yesterday’s “Materials for a blog”, reporting on my asking, puckishly, in Facebook:

What happens in the romantic popular song “Teal for Two”? If it’s set in a tealroom, whazzat?

Answers to these and other questions are forthcoming, but first the spur for my silly queries: a Daily Jocks ad for PUMP! men’s underwear, a display of PUMP!’s Activate homowear collection, in teal (with deep purple and white), with four teal studs in four different moose-knuckly garments, displaying four different cruise faces: We’re looking at you, buddy, cause we know what you need!

Ad copy:

Your favourite brand is back with a new collection for 2021. The PUMP! Activate collection comprises … a Trunk, Brief, Jock & Sidecut Brief, all made with premium materials to achieve unmatched levels of comfort and style.


(#1) Cockateal crotches: Cockateal, cockatool! / A-wand’ring I will go

Men’s underwear, a bird, a color, a sportive allusion to cocks of the phallic, rather than avian, sort. As in my 8/15/21 posting “Jock robin”, about Cock Robin and a jockstrap in robin’s egg blue.

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The flowers that bloom on the 6th, tra la

September 6, 2021

My birthday — 9^2, 3^4 — rolls around again, in its relentless way, and people are sending me flowers. Well, electronic images of flowers. (Meanwhile, I’m wearing my, sigh, gay dinosaur t-shirt, and I had coffee ice cream for lunch dessert, because it’s my favorite and because 9/6 is, whoopee, National Coffee Ice Cream Day, as well as AMZ’s and the Marquis de Lafayette’s birthdays, 1940 and 1757 respectively.) Today, three floral compositions:

— a sidewalk-crack garden (on the street in Dovercourt Village, Toronto), posted by Randy McDonald on his Facebook page on 9/3 and sent to me by e-mail on 9/4 to cheer me up (despair lurks in doorways, ready to pounce on me and rob me of joy): cleomes and snow-on-the-mountain

— from Benita and Ed Campbell (outside of Denver), a Jacquie Lawson electronic birthday card, “Golden Chain”: laburnum (yellow), drumstick alliums (purple and blue), plus seven parrots and a peacock

— from Rod [Williams] & Ted [Bush] (in Oakland), a different Jacquie Lawson card, “Birds and Flowers”: an arrangement of flowers to be identified, plus several little chirpy birds, with the accompaniment of a much-abbreviated orchestral arrangement of Chopin’s Grande valse brillante

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Clash of the titular Peppers

September 1, 2021

Today’s Wayno/Piraro Bizarro, a cartoon that would be totally incomprehensible without several pieces of pop-cultural knowledge:


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

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The snow border collie

September 1, 2021

🐇🐇🐇 It was 8/30, and the comic strip Mother Goose and Grimm went POP!, exploded in a phrasal overlap portmanteau, the one in the title:


(with the snow-sliding dog seen doing an airborne trick in the second panel of the strip).

Not your everyday POP, because it works straightforwardly in pronunciation but works only imperfectly in spelling:

snowboarder + border collie = snow border collie

Distinct spellings, boarder vs. border, homophones in both AmE and BrE (but see below).

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The Triceramisu

August 24, 2021

A hybrid beast with a portmanteau name: Triceratops + tiramisu, that is, Tricera (tops) + (tira) misu:


(#1) A fine portrait of the beast, artist as yet unknown (it’s one of those cartoons that has been passed around on the net through many hands, with the artist’s identity suppressed; Google Images has been of no help, because it detects the tiramisu and then disregards everything else)

A fantastical creature with the body of a tiramisu and the extremities (head, tail, and four legs) of a Triceratops, the Triceramisu feeds from pools of espresso, fortified wines, and liqueurs in the fields of cocoa that abound in its native land of Portmantopolis; the creature lounges drowsily in the evenings in plate-like nests. The Triceramisu is irenic, amiable, and delicious, and has been known to offer itself as sustenance to other creatures in need of food. Because it’s inclined to spoil and to crumble, the Triceramisu is unfortunately (though gloriously) short-lived.

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The mirror of the manatee

August 5, 2021

In today’s Wayno/Piraro Bizarro — Wayno’s title: “The Mammal in the Mirror” (a play on the song title “Man in the Mirror”) — a manatee primps at his vanity, yielding the vanity + manatee portmanteau vanatee, and crossing genders as well as words (masculine manatee — “Man in the Mirror”, addressing himself as handsome, bristly body — at a conventionally highly feminine item of furniture, a vanity table, for applying makeup in the bedroom):


(#1) (If you’re puzzled by the odd symbols in the cartoon — Dan Piraro says there are 4 in this strip — see this Page.)

I’ll start with the two contributors to the portmanteau and follow them where they lead, which is many surprising places.

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Buzzcut portrait 3: the gay dinosaur

July 29, 2021

(Sexually edgy topics — what do you expect from gay dinosaurs? — so you might want to exercise caution.)

Yesterday it was a rainbow FAGGOT in block letters (in the posting “Today’s garment faggotry”); today it’s all visual: a rainbow tyrannosaurus, a poignant symbol of gay obsolescence:


(#1) Yesterday I was standing in front of a bookcase, at the helm of my indoor walker; today I’m in my work nest with my Window on the World (on my plants, birds, and squirrels) behind me, sitting in my outdoor walker, which doubles as a sturdy chair (photo by Kim Darnell)

Behind me is a crocheted FUCK square, a tribute to Jesse Sheidlower and The F Word; and a postcard tribute to the male art of Tom of Finland. Just above them, not visible here, is a copy of Jump, Paradise Cove, 1987, a Herb Ritts photograph of four men disporting themselves on the beach (see my 9/9/16 posting “Herb Ritts”). Otherwise, it’s reference works on one side, my work table (with visible mouse, on its rainbow-Z mousepad) on the other.

On the shirt, see sense 2 in this NOAD entry:

noun dinosaur: 1 a fossil reptile of the Mesozoic era, in many species reaching an enormous size. … 2 a person or thing that is outdated or has become obsolete because of failure to adapt to changing circumstances.

Sigh.

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Sad farewells

July 26, 2021

Brief report from my house on things falling apart, or Why I Hardly Post Anything of Substance These Days. New medical problems — no serious details now, but a symptom of one is enormous exhaustion, so sleeping 10 to 12 hours a day, so not getting much done; and my hands all painfully seized up with arthritis in a terrible flare-up. But yesterday I had some remission and could slowly say farewell to my succulent garden. And then, later, could take some time at the computer slowly clearing out a chunk of a giant iceberg of unanswered e-mail going back to 2009 — a Monument of Things Undone, things that will never be done.

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