Today’s unrelated photo is of the Uptown Sports Club, abandoned circa 1849. East 6th and Waller, Austin, July 2007.
Yesterday’s post, wherein the entity known as Twisty emerged from the nebulous mists of the corporeal world to rejoin the Internet after an unauthorized hiatus, elicited surprisingly copious commentaries, considering that the post was merely a brief and dull acknowledgment that my recent essay deficit is attributable to nothing more exciting than a sort of blogger’s cramp. I was about to respond to a few of these comments when I realized “why bury this brief remission of my blogaphasia in the discussion section when I can turn it into a satisfyingly pedantic post?”
So here’s the pedantic post.
First, I must defend the stinkhorn mushroom. Although I used the photo, in a moment of unbridled puerility, to illustrate an essay on a patriarchal practice one dudely (and deleted) commenter calculated as the heart’s desire of “75% of the girls I date,”* and then left the photo at the top of the blog for two weeks while I sat around watching the Food Channel, it was never my intention that the reader should attach any kind of lasting misogynist significance to the innocent and spectacular fungus. In fact, as the country’s foremost authority on preternatural growths, I consider this stinkhorn to be one of the seven wonders of the excrescential world. It is my enduring hope that everyone reading this will have the remarkable good fortune to amble through some fetid undergrowth one fine summer’s day and be personally astonished by the stinky and majestic hot pink splendor of a freshly-fruited M. elegans.
Next, blamer Orange wanted to know about the seven habits of highly effective dragonflies. There was nothing in the post about dragonflies (the fly pictured was a robber fly, which belongs to the order Diptera, but except to the eyes of love I suppose one airborne bug is much like another), but I will not let that deter me from typing a bunch of words that say nothing in particular about a subject with which I am only glancingly familiar and which interests few. Quoth Orange:
A couple weeks ago, the Chicago skies darkened near Lake Michigan and a rainstorm threatened. I gazed out my window and beheld a dozen or so dragonflies buzzing around in the vicinity. Normally, I see dragonflies only if Iâ€™m right by the lake, and usually not many of them. This mini-swarm of pre-storm dragonflies, Iâ€™d never seen anything like it. I realize this is not the Great Lakes Entomology Extension here, but maybe you can explain the doings of dragonflies.
Also, when I see two of them hovering, ass end to ass end, are they doing the insectual heterosexual deed?
Although I am the world’s foremost non-authority on dragonflies, I cannot admit to any speculations relating to the tempest-pursuant onset of teeming odonate hordes on the shores of Lake Michigan. I will tell you this, however. Dragonflies hatch in water, spend a year or so molting, and then (depending on the species and the temperature) emerge in the summer. They eat mosquitoes, are not necessarily, as adults, directly dependent on bodies of water, and can be quite the jet-setters. In other words, perhaps what Orange observed was the result of a change in the micro-habitat of the species in question what caused’em to move into the neighborhood. Or maybe they just thought it was dusk; dragonflies are crepuscular.
As for the second part of Orange’s question, her conjecture is accurate, but the description is a tad misleading. When dragonflies do the nasty, they effect more of a head-to-toe thing. It’s called the wheel position, but it looks more like a flat tire.
Next, blamer therealUK was interested in how I get close-ups of insects. I use this absurd thing:
Next, it was suggested by several blamers that compiling a dictionary of blamisms (e.g. pornulation, megatheocorporatocracy, etc) might get me over the writer’s block hump. What alarmed me about this — aside from the pain induced by the thought of doing all that work — was a collateral suggestion that implicated me in the proliferation of the derogatory epithet asshat. I would like to disavow any connection with the derogatory epithet asshat. I am not now, nor have I ever been, a member of the Asshatians (rhymes with ‘Dalmatians’). Searching this blog for the word will confirm that I have never used it, ever. I say this to preemptively assuage those tragically marginalized denizens of the radical feminist blogosphere who, because of their genetic makeup, are compelled by their very nature to wear hats on their asses and who therefore can do naught but take vituperative vengeance on flippant spinster aunts who use the term pejoratively.
UPDATE: Orange points out that, contrary to what I have stated here, there was too something in yesterday’s post about dragonflies. And she is right. I mentioned a dragonfly field guide, big as life. Sorry, Orange. I blame … something. I can’t remember what, exactly.
* This intellectual giant also declaimed that I “really villainize Anal Sex To [sic] much,” that “most of the women” he knows “watch copious amounts of pornography.” He objected to some “false assumption” that “no woman actually wants sex enough to be a porn star.” Like dudes so relish doing, he then went on to graphically describe the ‘sex’ acts he performs on his girlfriend. Another guy opined that I shouldn’t point my feminist claw at men’s misogyny because it not all men are “msygonistic” and my radical position can only “anger” them. He added, “I am not msygonistic but I definitely get turned on by being dominant.” No really, he said that. And then he went on to graphically describe sex with his girlfriend.
One thing is certain in the untamed, cutthroat world of feminist blogging: posts about turdpie dude behavior are guaranteed to elicit turdpie dude behavior, in the shape of turdpie dudes waxing lyrical on the subject of a) how much women love turdpie dudesex and b) how pissed off they get whenever anyone suggests otherwise.