Unidentified Flying Dinosaur: Life Among the Lilies

You know what I love about waterbirds? The little buggers are easy to photograph. Well, relatively. When you’re standing on the boardwalk at Juanita and they’re out amongst the riot of vegetation that thrives in the shallow end of Juanita Bay in the summertime, they can sometimes be a bit hard to spot. Like so: [Read more…]

The ACE Cartoon Characters Re-Imagined in the Most Delightful Way

I’ll be you never looked at those utterly awful cartoons from the ACE PACEs and thought something wonderful could come of them, did you? I mean, honestly. They’re painful.

Image is a three-panel cartoon strip, showing two boys talking. Reginald is waving his arms in the air with his back to our view, saying, "Pudge, did I ever tell you about the time I came face to face with a lion?" Pudge: "No. What happened?" In the next panel, we can see Reginald and Pudge's faces. Reg says, "There I stood, without a gun. The lion growled and crept closer... closer... closer..." Pudge, imagining a lion in the grass, says, "Really? What did you do?" Next panel shows Reg imagining a lion in a cage, as he says, "I moved to the next cage! Ha-ha." Pudge, almost off-panel, says, "Oh, Reginald."

Cartoon from page (twenty-four) 24. No, I don’t know what it has to do with earth science, either.

But I’ve had the great good fortune to be introduced to an incredible group of ACE survivors, one of whom is putting a splendid new spin on these awful cartoons. Say hello to the adventures of Totally Hetero Pudge and Ronny by FeezlFuzzl. Here is an excerpt sure to change your entire way of thinking about pious Pudge McMercy and bad boy Ronny Vain. [Read more…]

Mystery Flora/Cryptopod Double-Header: Dragonfly Flowers

We’ve not had a mystery about here for some time! Let’s remedy that with a double-header. I’ve been busily editing photos from the summer whilst I watch Jessica Jones, and I have some lovelies for you.

Image shows some water flowers from above. They are long, thin clusters of tiny, pale pink flowers, with long, narrow green leaves.

Mystery Flora I

As you can see, these tiny buds were barely opening. But the bees were already busy with them.

Image shows a few stems of the flowers standing vertically. A bee is wrapped around one of them.

Mystery Flora II

These lovely flowers filled the wetlands around Juanita Bay last July. They definitely seem to like to keep their feet wet. [Read more…]

Sunday Songs: Highly Irregular!

Everyone seemed to enjoy our last music post quite a lot, so I figured we’ll start making this a regular feature and see what happens. Like last time, I’ll give you a theme, you give me a song (or a couple), and I’ll make a playlist from our results.

Most of us have a particular genre or general style we love most. For me, it’s symphonic, black and death metal with a bit of old-school power metal on the side. I was that person running around in high school wearing the ripped-up jeans and studded jackets. I adore corpse paint and death grunts accompanying ethereal sopranos. That’s the stuff!

I’m not much of an alternative music fan, really. And I wasn’t much in to the alt music scene of the 90s. Most of that stuff leaves me shuddering and reaching for Emperor or Epica. But every once in a while, the right song will hit at the right time in just the right way, and I’ll end up adoring something you’d never expect to hear in my rotation.

That’s what happened with 4 Non Blondes’ “What’s Up?”. This is so not my type of song. And yet, when it came up in Sense8 and worked so perfectly, I fell deeply and forever in love with it. Now it makes me happy right down to my toes whenever I hear it.

You can see the scene it was in here.

Image shows Kala, a young Indian woman, sitting on top of a building at night, with a city skyline behind her. She's singing into the sky, where a semi-transparent image of Riley, a blonde Icelander, is singing back to her.

Kala (right) and Riley (left) from Sense8. Image created from screenshots from the episode where they’re all singing together.

Your mission, should you choose to accept it: what’s one of your favorite songs that’s completely out of character for you?

The Super-Eclectic Reader Faves Playlist

A couple days ago, I asked you for just one song – and my, did you ever respond! Some of you couldn’t stop at just one song. (I get it, I do, it’s really hard to pick a single one.)

I’ve made a playlist of your songs. For those who recommended more than one, I chose your first song. It makes for a charmingly eclectic music mix!

A Hint for the Challenge!

I posed you a bit of a challenge yesterday: identify a birb blob. Alas, the challenge was too challenging! So I shall have to give you a further hint or few.

Now, keep in mind that our perching bird is quite common to the PNW wetlands. It’s sometimes seen in trees, but quite often is on the ground. And when you zoom in on its back, it looks like this:

Image shows a bird sitting in a bare tree. We can't determine color, as it's a silhouette. It is large, kind of blobby, with some fringy feathers popping out at odd angles. Its head is barely visible, but has a high dome and a long bill.

UFD I

All right, I’m pretty sure at least a few of you will be able to identify it now. Good luck!

Hit Me With Your Best Song

We’ve all got a special song that we love, yeah? That song that always gets you right in the feels, or makes your feet tap, or that you would shout to the world if you could. Let’s share a song, then! One of my Facebook friends posted this, and it struck me as completely awesome: Give me one song that means a lot to you, and I’ll listen to it. It can be anything. It can be serious or corny or musically complex or dead simple. It can be uplifting or despairing or anything in between. It can be absolutely any genre at all. It doesn’t even have to be your favorite song of all time (like that’s so easy to pick!). Just a song that you love.

So here’s mine:

There you go. Now you know a song that I love, the first that springs to mind when someone asks me for just one song. What’s yours?

Image shows a gray cat on a lawn, standing on its hind legs. Its mouth is open and its paws are clasped by its cheek. Caption says, "Opera cat sings only soprano."

First Mountains of 2016, Plus a Challenge!

Welcome to 2016! Some of you are dealing with extreme weather and the fruits thereof. I hope that’s the worst you have to deal with, and that the rest of it goes rather more smoothly after this.

Seattle’s weather has decided to be magnificent. If you overlook the cold, it’s quite nice, really: abundant sunshine and super-crisp views of the mountains. Funny Diva turfed me from the house on New Year’s Day after we’d had a pizza and Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries party. We headed down to Magnuson Park for some views near sunset, and folks, the mountains were out. In force. [Read more…]