Friday, August 16, 2013

Whither Crocodiles & Alligators?

They're scary & horrifying.  Watching this:

That's not any fun.  Instead, listen to Self Help Radio - no cute animals will be eaten during the course of the program!  It's this afternoon from 4 to 6pm on 88.1 fm WRFL in Lexington & online at

I might be too frightened now to do the show.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Preface To Alligators & Crocodiles: Questions & Cartoons

I was thinking about my radio show today & I was thinking I should ask & answer completely ridiculous questions about my themes.  Something along the lines of "Do alligators believe in UFOs?"& "What can a crocodile tell me about my mortgage that another old lizard can't?"  But then I might have to come up with answers.  & questions that are only marginally funny might have dreadfully unfunny answers.

A listener wrote to tell me that his favorite alligator in fiction was Albert Alligator in Pogo & it made me think: are there a lot of alligators in fiction?  I could think of only one other, Wally Gator:

Wikipedia has a list of fictional crocs & gators but I confess I don't know most of them.  I wish I were in the animation biz.  I'd make a new cartoon alligator that would be the best of all!  After Albert Alligator, of course.

Finally, is this cannibalism?

(That's what it said on the page where I found the picture.)

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Wallace Stevens

There were times when I was not sure if I liked Wallace Stevens very much.  He certainly looks like someone who'd be best friends with Ward Cleaver:
I remember in high school we were cautioned that his work was difficult & that we wouldn't "get it."  That's because it's important for teachers to teach children that poems are puzzles to be solved instead of insights that can be gleaned from language & sound.  What does this poem mean?

Call the roller of big cigars,
The muscular one, and bid him whip
In kitchen cups concupiscent curds.
Let the wenches dawdle in such dress
As they are used to wear, and let the boys
Bring flowers in last month's newspapers.
Let be be finale of seem.
The only emperor is the emperor of ice-cream.

Take from the dresser of deal.
Lacking the three glass knobs, that sheet
On which she embroidered fantails once
And spread it so as to cover her face.
If her horny feet protrude, they come
To show how cold she is, and dumb.
Let the lamp affix its beam.
The only emperor is the emperor of ice-cream.

Just read it out loud.  It's so fun, & it's also somewhat wistful.  Puzzle schmuzzle.  Language is something we invented to communicate with one another, but since we can't do that very well, & often trying to be direct can be a disaster, we invented poetry as a different way to communicate.  It's just about as successful as prose.  Communication is hard.

I'm going to go now & listen to Wallace Stevens read his own poems aloud.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The Police

I forgot to tell everyone on my Facebook page to listen to last week's show, guest-hosted by Jackman, & I am sorry about that - I bet he did an amazing job.  I don't have a recording since it was his show, but I can share a song that he couldn't play - not on Kentucky radio at five in the afternoon!

Thank you, Jackman!