Right. First order of bidness: we’re renaming the “Cryptoinsect” thing because some people apparently can’t accept chucking in any old arthropod under that title. Rather than argue technical versus lay terms and such, we’ll just say “Cryptopod” and be done with it. It’s easier to say and I can sneak sea creatures in under such a title. So there. Nyah!
Second order o’ bidness: present a cryptopod. Why, I haz one! (And if anyone here comes along to tell me that’s not an arthropod, I shall give them such a smack.)
This, you may note, is a very confused blackberry bramble. It’s in lusty full bloom a full week into October. Doubt we’ll get any fruit off it this year, even though it appears to be getting thoroughly pollinated.
Normally it’s bees crawling all over these flowers, but I guess the bees were busy elsewhere. I know they were out – I’ve got a spectacular bee photo from just a few bushes down that you will enjoy mightily when I get this week’s mystery flora posted. Maybe bees don’t like blackberries this late in the season? Don’t like this gentlepod? Just weren’t around at the time? Dunno.
I will confess something to you: I don’t actually much like this type of arthropod. You see, the things that look like ants with wings in Arizona generally looked more terrifying and had a nasty sting. I’m getting spoiled by the Pacific Northwest, though, where it seems very few things spend their time being vicious.
Every arthropod I’ve encountered up here has been pretty laid back. Granted, there was that spider bite a while back, but that was merely itchy. Ditto the mosquito bites, although those fuckers are arseholes no matter where in the world you are. But for the most part, I’ve returned from forays unscathed. The creepy-crawlies I’ve photographed have never offered to attack. Even when I shove my camera right up in their faces or the equivalent thereof, they’re mellow – or they flee. Vicious arthropod attacks so far: 0.
You know, I used to have very little respect for the ‘sects (and cousins). But I became an atheist. That may not sound like a prerequisite for honoring arthropods, but I developed a liking for biology after hanging about all the atheist sites bashing on creationism, and reading up on evolution changes your perspective on life. You start seeing much less of it as an unnecessary annoyance. You start seeing the small things as part of that beautiful tangled bank, and each one has its own intriguing evolutionary story, and plays a role in others’ stories, and pretty soon you don’t need to become a Jain or a Buddhist before you’re being more respectful of those brief lives.
And then you might just end up with readers who want a go at identifying them, or just love to look at them, and you find yourself seeking them out, and very pleased indeed that all of this happened in a part of the world where it’s not so painful and/or deadly to do art with arthropods.