Saturday, July 3, 2021

Surgery...or...exorcism...?

Warning: Content may offend. The following post may not be your cup of tea. If your sense of humour hasn't lurched over to the dark side yet, you may want to nudge the back button. Some tumour humour is about to follow.  

Please note that I would only crack jokes about my own tumour, not anybody elses. I grew it all by myself, so I therefore consider it fair game. Plus I write comedy. Dark comedy, in more recent times... How could I not go there...especially given the circumstances... I'll poke the damn thing with a stick, if I want to...metaphorically, at least...

Are you still reading this...? Then don't say I didn't warn you...

I got a copy of my scan recently, so have been gazing in wonder, and confusion, at my insides. And in horror. There is a creepy clown face in my tumour. I'm not sure how I feel about this, other than - WTF???????????



Not a clown, or a tumour, but if the images google has shown me of the latter, there could be some similarities...


Since making this ominous discovery, all sorts of pertinent questions have been competing for my attention.

Is it just me...or is this a common phenomenon? Do a statistically significant number of tumours also harbour creepy clowns? Are the walls of the staff rooms of radiologists all over the world covered in the best of the best creepy clown images?

What about the people these tumours with not-so-funny faces are growing inside of? Do they swap stories, and photos, with other patients in private chat rooms? Or is it one of those uncomfortable facts of life that no one talks about? So much so, that oncologists never even tell their patients? You know, cos they don't want them to worry...

No one told me... I only know I have "clown issues", because I looked... I haven't inspected every image yet either, there's rather a lot of them, so there might be rather a lot of clowns...

I could really do with some face recognition software, so I can ascertain if it's just one buffoon pulling different faces, (I don't think it's Krusty), or a party of clowns taking turns, posing for the camera....

I have been known to refer to this mass that I have amassed as my RCE, or Rogue Cell Ensemble, which sounds slightly less scary than tumour, in my opinion, at least, but now I'm wondering if it's actually a Rogue Clown Ensemble...eek...



Perhaps next time I see the specialist I will ask if exorcism may be a more prudent, less invasive treatment than scalpel action. If he still recommends the big chop, I will have to ask some questionable questions.

How will he stop the creepy clown/clowns from jumping ship and starting a fresh circus act in an adjacent organ?

Will the theatre team swap their scrubs for clown outfits? Or will they wear costumes that represent the clowns' natural enemy? Do clowns have enemies...?

More importantly, if I opted for the other option, how does one exorcise a clown? Snap his braces, pull his hair...send him to the naughty chair? 

Would the person performing the exorcism skip around me, in oversized shoes, blowing one of those roll out party whistles, while wearing a paper hat? Maybe while also popping some balloons, shaking a tambourine, and chanting, Happy Turfday to you? Turf that clown right out of town... 

Or would they try and tickle the joker out with laughing gas? Laugh that clown right out of town... Or perhaps tie IT to some helium balloons...float that clown right out of town...

I know...they could circle me on a unicycle while juggling bottles of holy water... although maybe throwing garlic wreaths up into the air would be safer...yeah...that might work...this tumour is technically vampirish, a blood-sucking beast trying to drain the life out of me...



Is this a built-in drain, or are we staring into the abyss...?


I wonder what clown features name is...probably something nauseatingly syrupy and playful...something like... Candyfloss...Candyfloss...Candy--

Let's not go there... 

I probably shouldn't give him a name, should I...or give him oxygen...not sure how to avoid that at the mo though...tricky...but then, I think the proof of identity/extracting his real name thing might be the responsibility of Team Exorcism ...? Or maybe that's only how it works in the movies...

I didn't used to suffer from coulrophobia--the official term for a fear of clowns.  I have even dressed as a clown in my youth. Tis hard to not be nervous about this one though. 

Another uncomfortable question...what is he doing when not posing for photo shoots...? Hopefully not playing teacher ...nurturing those little clones at an exclusive clown school...or making balloon cthulhu's...wait...maybe the exorcism crew might make the balloon cthulhu's...maybe that would work...chase the evil clown out with an eviler entity...



Is it just me, or does this beached sea monster have a bit of a cthulhu vibe going on...?


According to wiki, exorcists can cast out a demon by commanding it to depart in the name of a higher power, so who is above a clown...guess that would be the ringmaster...although I'm thinking it would make more sense if the exorcist was dressed like a ringmaster, complete with handlebar moustache, top hat and tails, and he would be drawing the clown out further with every crack of his whip, before ceremoniously feeding the f**ker to the lions...hear Aslan ROAR...

Am I giving this too much thought? I always have had a vivid imagination. Not vivid enough to imagine that I would see a creepy clown face in my tumour in the first place though, just so you know.

Annoyingly, I can hear Ms Streisand's song playing on repeat inside my head...Send in the Clowns...how about, Send out the Clowns...out damn clowns, out...maybe the surgical team would be humming that tune too....and here's a thought...they could call the procedure Operation Clown...that would make an eye-catching title for a journal publication, wouldn't it...or Operation Circus...that's another contender...



The swirly bit in this picture reminds me of The Scream, by Edvard Munch, before the screamer covered their ears. Could be just another weird sea beastie with limpet-like tendencies, who had the misfortune to hitch-hike its way to a stranding, though. Hard to be sure about these things...


Okay...so that's how my thought processes proceeded initially...then I got suspicious... What if the clown is exogenous? What if the image has been photoshopped? It might be a stock photo...clip art...inserted by a radiologist with a twisted sense of humour...maybe it's my punishment for having the audacity to request my medical records... their way of jumping onboard the creepy clown phenomenon, making sure they get the last laugh...is that the sound of a radiologist sniggering, I can hear???? Maybe they have a google alert set up for, "Help! There's a clown in my tumour!"

Curiously enough, I found another alarming image on a different scan which may support this theory...the tumour looks like a human head...gulp...and there's still yet another scan I haven't...scanned...yet...who knows what might be lurking in that one...probably best not to give it too much thought...especially in the wee small hours when I should be sleeping...it could be a sideshow slideshow in there...Chucky might be running amuck in my innards as well...egged on by a posse of blood thirsty deviant dolls...who are in cahoots with a  ventriloquist's dummy...eek...those things really creep me out...I see a horror movie script writing itself...Fearground Attraction...

As Bart said, "Can't sleep, clown will eat me..."  I hear ya little 2d dude, I hear ya...

If it is a radiological prank, it's definitely sick joke territory. Just saying...

Far more likely, of course, that it's just a Rogue Pixel Ensemble, but imagine how disturbing it would be for someone who did believe in demons?



Nice flippers, Cthulhu-ish creature.


And yes, before you say it, I do know that the tendency we humans have of seeing faces in everything from clouds to toast is called Pareidolia. Wikipedia tells me that Pareidolia is actually used as an educational tool in radiology. Check this out;

"When viewing spinal radiographs, normal bony anatomic structures resemble the face of an owl. (The spinal pedicles resemble an owl's eyes and the spinous process resembles an owl's beak.) But when cancer erodes the bony spinal pedicle, the radiographic appearance changes such that now that eye of the owl seems missing or closed, which is called the "winking owl sign".

And part of the spine that looks like a Scotty dog, sometimes wears a collar, and then there's the bony bit that looks like Baby Yoda. Who would've thought. No mention of clowns though. But then tumours aren't a normal part of human anatomy, are they...

Pareidolia

Google also showed me a journal publication about a pituitary tumour that looked like Big Bird from Sesame Street.

And then there's the geode that looks like the Cookie Monster;

livescience.com

Where there any clowns in Sesame Street? My memory of the characters is a little sketchy...it's been a while...I think I would rather my tumour looked like Mr Snuffleupagus than this bozo though, or maybe even The Count--that would make the one-wheeled cycle riding, bottled water juggling demon chaser a no brainer, wouldn't it--as long as the Count wasn't in there...you know...counting, "One tumour...two tumours...three--"

This article mentions an ultrasound that revealed a face in a man's testicle. Yikes;

BBC: Why do we see faces in objects?

This bit is fascinating;

"In the 1950s, the Bank of Canada had to withdraw a series of banknotes because a grinning devil leapt from the random curls of the Queen’s hair."

Good grief.

And if you're trying to think of a way to increase the amount of hours you spend looking at random sh*t on the internet, try googling, #iseefaces. I suggest you start here;

Twitter--Dr Beth Nichols

A universe in a blade of grass...



RIP, ocean entity. I may have to honor you with a Hi-ho Holly-o Sea Shanty. Never actually written one before, but if I can write shit poetry, I think it's not too much of a stretch to hope I can write a not-as-shitty sea ditty...(try saying that ten times in a row)...watch this space...or perhaps...stay tuned!


Returning to the exogenous vs endogenous issue, I realise that by publicly stating that I have an inner clown--a sinister one--that I am playing right into the Biopsychosocial (BPS) crowd's hands...that whole cancer personality industry that makes my blood boil...

I can see the elaborate hypotheses reproducing themselves, clumping together, forming a malignant mass already; suspected childhood trauma...must have been laughed at as a child...probably at other children's birthday parties...resulting in a repressed fear of fun...or maybe she was teased...her nose is kinda red...all of this negativity manifesting as...drum roll...The Cancer Clown!

Could explain my aversion to polkadots, I guess... Actually, at the tender age of five, while walking home from school, some older kids did call me short stuff and ask if I got shrunk in the washing machine...maybe that was the inciting incident...their cruel laughter might be what my cells remember...

No doubt the BPS brigade would recommend some positive affirmations that I could tape to my mirror, to help me learn to embrace my inner clown...perhaps something like, "Laughter is the best medicine..." 

They might suggest I change my theme song to, Funny face, I Love You...  They would probably also propose laughter therapy to help me heal...so I can...you know...turn that clown frown upside down... Or tell me to stand on a piece of paper and yell stop!...to stop "doing" my tumour. Yeah...that's bound to work...now where did I put that bucket...

Let's pause for a moment to soothe ourselves with a picture of a winking tree;




I bet I know what you are thinking...what was I thinking posting this outrageous anecdote without providing you, dear reader, with photographic evidence...yes, well, sorry about that, I realise how annoying it must be, it's just that I had what I thought was a cunning plan, and I'm still in the denial stage, hoping that my plan might magically come to fruition.

I was initially thinking of posting the photo on Reddit's r/creepy, purely for the amusement of others, but then I read an article in the dailymail about a baby ultrasound image that looked like a demon, and I wondered if I could sell my clown...for enough balloons to fly me over the ocean to a country where I could have some fancy pancy treatment that I can't get here in little ole NZ...

Deluded, I know...
But I can't let go...
Of those balloons that will fly...
My tumour and I...
And the clown that resides...
In my dodgy insides...
Across the big blue sea...
To another country...
Where I can get medication...
To blast this abomination...

If that appalling attempt at poetry made you cringe, then rest assured you are not alone...if my circumstances were different, I would probably have the self respect to delete it, but sharing one's body with a rogue tumour kinda changes your perspective on what's important...ya know...

Anyway, I feel the need to acknowledge how lucky I am to be living in a country where Covid isn't rampant yet, because I'm pretty sure I'd be down under by now if things were different...it's so sad to see what is happening around the world...my condolences to all those who are suffering because of the pandemic...

I may update this post with a photo at a later stage, when I come to my senses, but for now I just need to get this clown off my chest... I have kindly uploaded a picky of a cloud demon as a substitute for the time being...enjoy...




My, what a big nose you have, sky overlord.


If you have the stomach for it, here's another poem, just for fun;

In my innards there's a clown
His smile makes me frown
He's living in my tumour
Tis hard to find the humour
No cause for celebration
I need some clown chelation
The jester needs to repent
and get the F out of my tent
For my body to ever mend
His party needs to end
This Bozo has to go
Please cancel his sh*t show
A permanent lockdown
Curtains for the clown
Can someone please burst his bubble
If it isn't too much trouble
Without spreading his creepy face
All over the god damn place
Don't want this clown to clone
Himself in another zone
If he finds a way to spawn
A circus will be born
Please form a tight bunch
And deck Mr Punch
Out damn clown, out
You rainbow-haired lout!

Wait! Lightbulb moment! Maybe that's the answer! Bad poetry! Delivered by...drum roll...Vogons! But of course. I reckon a few verses from them would send the clown packing...better dust off my Hitchhiker's Guide, and get my trusty towel ready...if only...

Yeah, I know, I should probably quit clowning around, but I can't run away from this, so I thought I'd pun away instead...

If you know anyone who wants to buy an original clown portrait, (not autographed though, sorry, at least...I don't think it is...hmmmm...I may have to zoom in and report back...), please comment below. Haven't set a reserve yet, but all offers considered. Bidding wars also welcomed. 

And feel free to comment if there are any punfare opportunities I have missed. Bound to be a few. Just an amateur comedian, ya know.  Only ever likely to be remembered posthumorously, if at all...or maybe posttumourously...ha...that possibly only works as a private joke...but anyway, put your best pun forward. I dare ya.

And if, heaven forbid, you have found a clown in your innards too, I'd love to hear from you! And if there are any radiologists out there with an inside scoop...

May take me a while to respond, sorry, because I'm...you know...up to my neck in tumour trouble, hopefully just metaphorically...



Looks like you picked a fight with the wrong cloud, Mr Seagull. I'd fly while there's still time if I were you.


On another curious note, I only just saw It...the movie...and I also saw a rather timely episode of A Late Show where It was mentioned. While I'd like to take Stephen Colbert's advice and avoid the sewerage system, this clown is pretty close to my own private sewerage system...can't really steer clear of that one...what do I do about that, Stephen? Tricky...

I'm actually really annoyed with myself that I have only just discovered Mr Colbert's delightful wit. I remember seeing on the news ages ago the interview he did with our Prime Minister, and I made a note to self to check his show out, but I was late to A/The Late Show so now I'm faced with the disturbing realisation that I have missed a sh*tload of belly laughs. How many episodes of his brilliance have I been deprived of...I shudder to think... Not quite FOMO, but the past tense equivalent...is there a term for that...FOHMO? Fear of Having Missed Out...?

Yet another crushing blow I have to learn to accept I guess, if my inner clown gets the last laugh, I may not have enough years left to catch up on all the previous episodes...



I hope that malevolent cloud up above didn't vaporise that poor seagull...if so, he looks happy though...free as a bird...there is that...


Anyhoo, thank you, Mr Colbert, for making me chuckle despite my scare, I shall try to focus on the positives... relishing in the memories of the episodes I have had the privilege of viewing, and the gems I have taken away...

For instance, I now know that cuttlefish can pass the marshmallow test, and even though my local library doesn't have a lawn, I can imagine that it does and that one day, I will find a baked potato on it...or perhaps a librarian will find a suspicious spud before I do...and post a picture of it on facebook...here's hoping...if only my tumour looked more like a tuber than a clown...I think that would be less traumatic...but potatoes are my favourite food, so maybe not...

I was shocked to learn that there is a shortage of garden gnomes. Good grief. Didn't see that one coming. Was delighted to hear though that I am not the only person who has a gnome called Chomsky...

After watching another recent episode, I'm wondering if maybe I need to go and see a lady in the woods...

And I'm pretty sure it was Mr Colbert who introduced me to balloon cthulhu's. Worth a google, if you get a spare moment.

But peanut butter on apples? Really, Stephen? I know we have some strange things on our Kiwi menus, but I'm so not adding that to the Bucket List...maybe the F**ket List...if I get around to it...

Perhaps it's just me but I have to admit I was a bit creeped out when Merry gave Stephen a pair of his ears...because of my book cover...you know...the one that has an ear on it...I still can't believe I wrote that...gulp...

And I do regret having my ears in listen mode during the Cicada Updada though. Learning that the poor little fellows are being killed by a nasty butt fungus was definitely TMI. "Salt shakers of death,"...oh dear... I wish there was some way to erase that information from my mind... Speaking words of wisdom there, Stephen.

Demon cloud no:2;



Don't think it would be a good idea to jumpstart that cloud, Stephen...who knows what might reign down...


But back to the good stuff. A particularly enjoyable recent episode was the Colbert Questionert. Maybe it's just for famous people, but I thought I'd answer a few of the questions myself, just in case anyone is interested.

What is the scariest animal?

Humans. DOH. I can't believe no one else mentioned this. Isn't it obvious?????? Surely it can't just be me??????

What's the one thing you own that you should really throw out?

Well...I guess you could say he is technically my possession...or...am I his possession... I may have to come back to this one...

Apples or oranges?

That depends. Do you want me to eat them, or juggle them?

What do you think happens when we die?

Somebody else gets the last laugh.

What song would you listen to for the rest of your life? 

Hotel California, the 1977 Capitol Center live version. (As if I needed to add that.) "You can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave..." Aint that the truth...sheesh...

But wait...can I play my I Might Have Cancer Card to get two songs? I'll answer that question with a yes, because not only is this my tumour, but this is also my blog, so tune no:2 is Kenny's The Gambler, because the secret to surviving is knowing what to throw away, and knowing what to keep. Sage advice there, peeps. Pay attention.

And no, I'm not about to claim a third song, that would be outrageous, just thought it would be interesting to insert here that, Don't Fear the Reaper, just happens to be another one of my theme songs...not sure why...

And while we are discussing music, let's segue into TV shows. I have to recommend The Big C, brilliant performance by Laura Linney. You should definitely experience FOHMO if you haven't seen this series already.

Moving right along...

Describe the rest of your life in five words.

Hmmmm...that's easier than I would prefer...if my RCE is cancer, a number of phrases spring to mind...

Headed for the big chop.

The screen before game over.

I know this is only supposed to be one five word ensemble, but it's too much fun...really quite addictive...plus I am a tautologist by trade...(and did I mention my, I Might Have Cancer Card?), and basically, I just can't help myself... oh look...there's another one;

I just can't help myself.

And technically, that question doesn't say you are only allowed one response...tis open to interpretation...so I will still do my own thing...oh look...there's another;

Still doing my own thing.

And let's not stop there;

Hoping there is an afterlife.

Hoping the afterlife isn't Hell.

Putting the grin in grim.

Some generic, but relevant ones;

Dance me to the end.

Keep calm, and giggle on.

Laugh like there's no tomorrow. 

Some insect inspired responses, because bugs are beautiful and it would be a sin for me to not mention them in a post;

Bug obsessed til I croak.

Waiting to meet the worms.

Hoping the afterlife has insects. (If not, starting a petition.)

And;

Googling "DIY  mushroom burial suit."

Because I don't think these clever creations are available in this neck of the woods yet. Sigh.

Some musically minded answers inspired by the previous question;

Refusing to Fear the Reaper.

Deciding what to throw away.

Accepting I can never leave.

But wait...there's more;

Rogue cell ensemble goes rogue.

Down under in Down Under.

Scanning the sky for Vogons.

And inspired by Merry's ears; 

Wondering, what would Gandalf do...?

Wondering how to summon Gandalf...

Wishing I lived in Hobbiton.

And to give this post a warm fuzzy full circle feel;

Trying to unjoin the circus.

Or;

Running away from the circus. (Not sure which of those I like best but my inner tautologist insisted I include both so you can decide.)

Not getting the last laugh. 

Couldn't sleep, clown ate me.

One tumour...two tumours...three--

But don't hit the back button just yet...saving the best for last, as you do...

Taken down by a clown...

Wednesday, January 27, 2021

The Prince of Leaves

 


I published this humorous fantasy ebook ages ago now, and finished the sequel Bogwood, last year. I need to get busy with my Bucket List for reasons I will divulge some other time, so it's a relief I can finally cross something off. Yay.



The blurbs;


Book one: The Prince of Leaves


It is time for Prince Cleo to leave home, to venture beyond the safety of Gillip Kingdom, in search of his inner barbarian. What could possibly go wrong when he has a kick-ass damsel as his chaperone? But will her gift of the gab be a sharp enough weapon to keep the gentle prince safe from the many adversaries they encounter along the way? Or will her smart mouth and over confidence make them both easy targets? 

A playful narrative with a warm romantic undercurrent, The Prince of Leaves celebrates introverts, and challenges gender stereotypes. It is the first book in a humorous fantasy series.


Book two: Bogwood


A wilted warlock who needs to sacrifice a virgin prince to restore his evil powers, finally makes his move. The Sex Fairy is not impressed. She has some moves of her own, and launches an intervention. 

Will gentle Prince Cleo lose his life, or his virginity? Or will he neither get sacrificed, nor laid, finding another way out of an awkward situation?

Maybe the balloony fellow in a kilt can keep Cleo safe from the warlock's clutches. Or perhaps Celia's built-in weapons and hair braiding skills will weave their own magic...


Both ebooks can now also be purchased in one volume from my amazon author's page;

https://www.amazon.com/author/hollygreen

As with all of my kindle publications, you can read a free sample on the amazon page to see if it might be your cup of tea. 

As you may have noticed, there is a stick insect--or sticky, as I affectionately call them--on the cover of both books...the photogenic star of this runway shoot;

https://pinholesinthesky.blogspot.com/2012/04/stick-insect-central.html?m=0

How could I not make him my cover model...he knew how to strike a pose! Perfection! 



Friday, March 13, 2020

Chewing the Fat with a Cannibal



A quake story you can really sink your teeth into;







Introducing my most outrageous work yet...still can't believe I wrote this...what can I say, other than that my sense of humour went over to the dark side post quake...a basic survival tool...what I had to do, to get thru.

If you're a horror comedy fan;

The blurb;

Chewing the Fat with a Cannibal

A recipe for disaster, of the unnatural kind…

After a massive earthquake decimates her city, a lonely spinster distracts herself from the frequent aftershocks and the inconvenience of having to shit into a bucket, by chatting to someone she meets on a dating website, a gentle man who appears to share both her love of bugs, and her dark sense of humour.

As their friendship deepens, she decides to throw caution to the wind and accept this intriguing stranger’s offer of refuge at his hand-built, self-sufficient, eco-sanctuary—complete with turret, outdoor pizza oven, rambling organic garden, and flushing toilet. 

She makes the mistake of thinking, I’m living in mid-apocalyptic central city Christchurch…how could things possibly be any worse?

A reminder of the dangers of both online dating and positive thinking, especially when the two are unwisely combined, this horror comedy will make you think twice before striking up a conversation with a stranger on the internet…

My author page;



Sunday, September 3, 2017

Things you should never ask a pharmacist.





Had an...erm...awkward conversation recently. I asked a pharmacist if he had any pea based powder. He said, "Pardon?" 

This didn't surprise me, as I often have to repeat myself. I'm prone to mumbling. I get told off a lot for doing this. 

I said it again, hoping my attempt to speak properly would be well received. It wasn't. He replied, "I'm not quite sure what you mean..." 

I noticed the strange intonations in his voice, but still didn't click straight away, because I was actually in quite a bit of pain at the time, and trying not to wince. 

Then I got it. Oh dear. He thought I meant, "P." In case you are from another country, where I live, "P" is the common name for meth. Or crystal meth. Or Ice. Or methamphetamine. That drug they manufacture on Breaking Bad.




Hardly surprising then that asking a pharmacist for some "P" based powder was likely to raise a few eyebrows... 

Once I realised my mistake, I explained that I meant p-e-a, as in the legume, those dear little nutritious green parcels that the princess couldn't sleep on. 

Actually, I didn't mention the fairy tale reference, I was way too mortified to think of anything humorous to say at the time. Especially since it's my local pharmacy and I go there a lot. 

Not everyone can embarrass themselves as easily, and as frequently, as I do. It's a special skill. Lucky me.

Of course, "p" is also for perfection, and what better way to illustrate that than with a picky of a phantastically photogenic phasmid;


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Swimming With Spiders

I'm wondering if swimming with spiders will be the next big thing. Surely swimming with dolphins must be getting a bit old by now?



I have seen spiders on the surface of a pond before, but it was news to me that there are actually water spiders who dive into the water to hunt fish and frogs. Good grief. 

I'm not sure I want to picture them doing this, but I have already. Apparently, some water spiders come in giant size, as big as a person's head. Yikes.

I do like spiders. If you've been to this blog before, you will probably already know that. I've even posted some homemade spider movies on my youtube channel. 

I'm still not sure I would want to go swimming with them though. And not just because I can't swim. Not well, anyway. 

I'm wondering if the spider at the top of this post decided he wanted to go for a swim in my laundry tub. 

I assumed not, which is why I endeavoured to rescue him. He endeavoured to resist my rescue attempts, which significantly hindered progress. 

His raised his front legs, not in an, "Oh I so need a hug! Why, thank you, big friendly giant for offering to pick me up," but more in a, "Come any closer and you die," kind of way. It's all about body language, isn't it. And knowing how to read it. 

He did quite a good scary spider impression, which persuaded me to proceed with caution. 

His attack modes operandi was an understandable reaction, of course, given my size, and his vulnerability. I'm pleased to announce that I won the battle. 

A bite-free bug relocation operation was successfully implemented. Isn't he handsome! I believe he is a Tunnelweb Spider, and possibly a female one;

http://collections.tepapa.govt.nz/Topic/9426

There has been an interesting assortment of critters requiring rescuing from my laundry tub lately. I'm not sure what the tub attraction is, but you will be relieved to know that I check it regularly so no bug has to perish when they can't get out again.

One day I found this adorable baby weta in there;




Then recently, this praying mantis;




And here's another photo from a different angle because I couldn't decide which one to upload, so I decided not to decide and just post both;




I know this post rescue photo is a bit blurry, but I like the way the praying mantis is staring at me, and this is my blog, so if you object to blurry photos, I suggest you look away now;




I found a large furry spider in there recently too, but there was no time to do a photo shoot. Another difficult customer, that one. Sheesh.

Some spiders I can happily pick up with my hands. This one was just not that kind of spider. Like the other eight-legged beastie up above. Grumpy.

I wouldn't dare pluck this furry creature out of the laundry tub either;




He's a bit moody at times too, and likes to make his own decisions about where he wants to be. I'm pretty sure he didn't need my assistance, anyway. Unless he actually wanted to take a bath...


Monday, December 19, 2016

Code Caterpillar.




I was standing in the bus shelter the other day and just happened to glance down and what do I see but a little green caterpillar frantically hurtling across the footpath...towards the shelter...

There was a gap under the shelter so he could've made it into the cubicle and if he'd survived the bus patrons' feet, next stop was more footpath, where more humans and their tootsies were lurking. Beyond that was the road. If he'd by some miracle made it that far, a trio of sparrows loitering on the curb would most likely have noticed a green squiggle in motion. A fairly grim prognosis, I'd hypothesize. Not a very sensible itinerary, Mister Caterpillar.

Naturally, I sprang into action, nervously because I had an appointment to get to and couldn't risk missing the bus, and I know from experience that caterpillars can be very  tricky customers.

They do their damnedest to thwart ones attempts to rescue them. Valuable time molecules are wasted in the ensuing battle. And their delicate disposition requires a gentle approach. This particular caterpillar was in full on panic mode, wriggling wildly in protest. Did he seriously think he had a better plan?

Luckily the consequence of his boisterous resistance was that he back flipped himself onto my awaiting bus card so I was able to scoop him up and relocate him (before he back flipped himself off again) to a nearby garden.






While there were caterpillar style holes in the greenery that I rehomed him in, which suggested he may find himself amongst his own kind, I doubt it was where he started his journey. It was a very windy day and there was a very large tree above the bus shelter, so I think he probably got blown off of his perch.

As much as I like to help bugs return to their hometown, I wasn't about to scale the tree. Apart from the fact that my unco status dictates that I should stick to just hugging trees and sitting beneath them instead of climbing them, (and that I would've missed my bus, that as well) it was way too windy for such acts of altruism. Would've made some amusing headlines though. Let us peruse a few;

"Fire department rescues crazy caterpillar woman from treetops."

"Hypothermic windswept woman's garbled explanation confounds fire fighters: Why was she trying to rescue a caterpillar from a tree?"

"Fire fighter rescues woman from tree, then searches neighbouring trees in pursuit of cat called Mister Caterpillar."

"Fire department plead for public to leave caterpillars stuck up trees to their own devices." 

"Fire department rescue guidelines updated after surge of critters stuck up trees calls: cats - yes, caterpillars- no."

"Tree hugging caterpillar defender back on terra firma and being cocooned by mental health professionals."

"Woman and caterpillar both recovering well after wild wind sends pair plummeting into path of oncoming bus."

"Witnesses sought: Woman recovering in hospital, after miscalculating weight bearing capacity of branch, keeps asking nurses if Mister Caterpillar survived the fall. Anyone near the bus stop in question on the morning of the incident who saw a man in a green jumpsuit fall from the tree, or anyone who knows the mysterious Mister Caterpillar's current whereabouts, is asked to contact police."






I think I like that last idea best. Kinda makes me want to get a green jumpsuit for myself. Maybe Mister Caterpillar could be part of a new wave of super heroes. A crusader for truth and justice who saves the day in a lime green onesie. 

I wonder what his special power would be...the ability to spin himself an invisibility cocoon so he could hide from his adversaries? Has that been done before? I think there's a Moth Man, isn't there. Not sure what he does. Might ask google later.

Mister Caterpillar would of course be able to traverse any terrain with his sticky feet, (except perhaps the ocean) inching his way up tall buildings, and beneath underpasses. And he would not just be able to scale bridges, he could be a bridge... joining the gap in a broken swing bridge so the terrified little humans stranded on the side where the scary monster is salivating in their direction, could flee to safety. Three cheers for Mister Caterpillar!

But wait... let's rewind just a little...I just had a troubling thought...what if Mister Caterpillar was hurtling towards the bus shelter because he also had a bus to catch... Maybe he was worried he might be late for his appointment...

Obviously, such a possibility unearths a plethora of perplexing questions... is that why he back flipped onto my bus card in one (now suspiciously) easy move? Did he think, "Sweet! I can hitch a free ride on someone elses card!" 

Or was his back flip accidentally precise, was he really thinking, "What are you doing, stoopid human? Leave me be!  Can't you see I have a bus to catch!" As I whisked him away from his spot in the queue, was he cursing under his breath, wondering if it would be too late to reschedule?

Perhaps the most pressing question, in my mind, at least, is what kind of appointment would a caterpillar need to catch a bus to? A cocoon fitting? An antenatal/metamorphosis class? Or maybe he just had a coffee date? With Moth Maiden?

I'm not on drugs, btw. I know I've said that before, it's just that sometimes when I read back through what I've written, I find myself thinking, "Huh? Is this woman on something?" so it's easy to see how others might think that too. Truth is, I'm just naturally like this. My brain thinks odd thoughts. Some of them, I share. With you, dear reader. Or dear spammers. Oh wait, the spammers don't actually read this waffle do they...

Friday, September 30, 2016

Pink katydid dining on a rosebud.




Some gardeners would grumble at the sight of a bug eating a rose, but not I. Feast on as many rosebuds as you desire, exquisite creature! Consider the garden your own personal buffet!

And while a picture may be worth a thousand words, there are  moving pictures of this katydid to go with!

Watching this clip almost inspires me to write a poem... stay tuned for an updated version accompanied by a poetry recital soundtrack...

(It's a pink rose this pink fellow is feasting on, btw, or at least, it would've been.)

Romance abounds in every garden, if you know where to look... and how to look past...