Friday, September 16, 2011

Fascinating Friday

I am fascinated by many things.

Right now I am fascinated by all those little thingies on the right side of my blog.

The number of Followers creeps ever higher and although it moves slower than molasses it is all the way up to 79 at present. I think some followers have stopped dropping by but their little photos are still displayed and will continue to be until the followers become non-followers officially. As the Eagles once sang, you can check out any time, but you can never leave (7:15).

The Most Recent Visitors To My Blog list continues to amaze. I have now saved 136 of those little flag doohickies, the two latest ones being Tuvalu and Palestinian Territory.

The Feedjit Live Traffic Map is beginning to show more and more visitors from Asia. Only a few visitors arrive from South America, though, and little red dots on the African continent are rare indeed. Hawaii and New Zealand sometimes disappear altogether, dropping off the map entirely, as do the Philippines from time to time. Feedjit is fickle and marches to its own drummer.

I have kept a poem by Jinksy and a quotation from Carolina’s blog in place for over two years just because I enjoy reading them. Just so you won’t tire yourself out from all the scrolling up and down with your mouse, here are both of them:

1. Jinksy’s poem:


Dreams of youth
become faded with age
like bright flower petals
that dim as they dry
between interleaved paper
meant to preserve them.

And yet those pale petals
live on in the mind
to bloom again,
as memory recalls
the hour of their plucking.

-- Penelope Smith in napple notes, 5/13/2009. Used by permission.

2. Carolina’s quotation:

"I find it fascinating to see how the flowers of Nectaroscordum siculum bulgaricum unfold."

-- Carolina in Nederland in Brinkbeest In English, 6/10/2009.

Today, I am adding another quotation under the heading Words to Live By (Or Something) just because I can and also because I am fascinated by it and here it is:

3. “In the latest taxonomy the Patellogastropoda have become an unranked taxon as a separate clade.” --from an early version of the article “Limpet” in Wikipedia.

There. I did it and I’m glad. And although the statement is scientifically accurate it strikes me as very funny. If it doesn’t strike you as very funny there is probably something wrong with you.

Patellograstropoda are limpets. More specifically, the limpets shown below are Patella vulgata on a rock surface in Wales.

(Photo from Wikipedia Commons used by permission under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License)

The fact that patella also is how your doctor refers to your kneecap is interesting, but not fascinating enough to explore further.

However, if I may quote from Wikipedia again, “A clade is a group consisting of a species (extinct or extant) and all its descendants. In the terms of biological systematics, a clade is a single branch on the tree of life. The idea that such a natural group of organisms should be grouped together and given a taxonomic name is central to biological classification. In cladistics (which takes its name from the term), clades are the only acceptable units. The term was coined in 1958 by English biologist Julian Huxley.”

I end this post with what you’ve all been waiting for.

Ladies and gentlemen, a clade diagram (or cladogram):

Oh, and this (2:46). Can you identify the lovely ladies?

[Three of the lovely ladies are Greta Garbo, Lana Turner, and Grace Kelly. But who is (or are) the other one (or two)? I really want to know; I don’t have a clue. --RWP]


  1. Goodness me - un-archived? Moi? Pourquoi? The Jinksy name pops up all over the place, it seems...The proverbial Bad Penny, perhaps? LOL ♥

  2. Oooh, I'm into diagrams at the moment. I really love that cladogram!

    PS I'm just putting in an appearance to boost the presence of NZ on your map-thingy.

  3. PS, you're into limpets at the moment, aren't you? I see they are the thread between the last two posts, mwah ha ha!

    And I know a limpet poem. I feel a post coming on...

  4. The two other ladies were, I think, Lady Gaga and Laura Bush but I could be wrong.

  5. Thought I saw Liz Taylor in there.

  6. Everybody, I love the comments!

    Verification word is permfre My blog is naturally curly.