Saturday, April 04, 2009

Life 1, Cuttlefish 0

Something had to give. It is the time of the semester when assignments come due, and grading piles up. It is the time of the year when furnaces, cars, bikes, and computers break down (I don't know how they conspire to do this, but they do). It is the time of life when the maximum number of offspring are requiring tuition to be paid, loans to be applied for, this that and the other to be bought. It is the time of the economy when two decades worth of savings are worth less than a decade ago, as if ten years of work was for nothing. It is one of those rare years when I have no summer teaching at all, and thus no summer income to speak of. It is the time of my life when, with finances like this, my 25th anniversary is coming up in a couple of months. We'll likely split a can of soup in celebration.

Something had to give. I can't cut back on my job, or they won't pay me. I can't cut back on parenting or spousing, just because. I can cut back on doing something I very much like to do, but which takes time I don't really have right now. So this might be it, or this might be it for a while. I really don't know right now.

I love my readers. They have helped me through so much already. I don't regret a moment of my time spent putting life into silly rhymed verses. I still owe some of my readers a signed copy of my book (I haven't forgotten!), and I will do that. One kind and talented reader is helping me (the delay is all mine) to re-write the book, add some commentary and re-organize, so that may come out eventually... and I will, of course, keep checking email and comments.

But something had to give, and so I am, at the very least, taking a break. I hope to see you soon, but if not, I still thank you from the bottom of all three hearts for supporting me, for enabling my obsession, for helping to create the Cuttlefish persona.

For now, though... Good-bye.

Friday, April 03, 2009

The Digital Pack-Rat, Vol. 16

The real world is hitting the fan, so I don't have time to put these in their contexts. I think all were from Pharyngula this time, though, so there's that much at least.

Congrats, MAJeff

Worth the hassle? Worth the fuss?
To join the club--be one of us?
Now you've looked behind the curtain
(You once suspected, now are certain)
And seen the truth: that Ph. D.'s
Are roughly well-trained chimpanzees,
Hairless apes with advanced degrees,
And narrow fields of expertise.

You ran the maze, you beat the rats;
I offer my sincere congrats
Now all the strain and toil and wait
Is done--it's time to celebrate!
So here's to MAJeff! And here's
To all the work, and all the years
And laughter, heartache, sweat and tears--
(You need to hydrate. Drink some beers!)

PZ’s trouble & strife

Oh, trouble and strife! The Trophy Wife
Doesn't quite get the cephalofetish?
But think, if she did, and dressed up like a squid
To entice you to someplace that's wettish--
She would use both her charms and her tentacle arms
To entrap you in utter delight--
We'd just stare at the walls, while Pharyngula stalls
Cos you're too effing busy to write!

Sniffs of snails on pheromone trails

The mucous trail that shows a snail
Has recently passed by
Will not grow stale before a male
Decides to go say hi.
At such a scale, the fine detail
The pheromones supply
Will never fail as they assail
The mollusk's roving eye
(to no avail, I'll moan and wail
I meant not to imply
The "eye" is hale--it may need braille,
It's metaphor, not lie!)
My verse is frail--let sense prevail;
Let no one here deny
A snail may nail a bit of tail,
And who'd complain? ... not I.

Ken Ham still stupid—film at eleven.

Creationism always finds
That change occurs within their "kinds"
No dog had kitten for its whelp
So god, of course, has had to help.
The change we see is always small
And sometimes there's no change at all,
Example one is Ken Ham's mind
Which has not had to change its kind
He's calcified his stupid views
And so, of course... this is not news.

Slug Sex

The hugs of slugs, the tricks of dicks,
Hermaphroditic bliss;
To climb, make slime, perchance to dance,
Much closer than a kiss.
Their bed, a thread that's slung or hung
From branch, or jutting rocks,
Where they display a gay ballet
Of intertwining cocks.
This sex may vex the prude, as rude,
Or deviant or odd;
To spin as sin, we know, would show
A very boring god!

Buffy was fictional, Boston

Vampires, draped in capes of satin,
Roam the halls of Boston Latin!
Pay no heed to calls for quiet—
Hell awaits; so go on—riot!
Bring your garlic, wear your crosses,
Try to cut your vampire losses,
Better still, just stay at home
Where monsters are afraid to roam.
The school can use the room, to teach
The ones whose brains aren’t out of reach.

Kent Hovind wants our money and our prayers

We'll pray and pray, and pray some more,
To open up his prison door;
We'll pray all day and pray all night
And not give up our prayerful fight;
We'll pray all night and pray all day
Till God hears what we have to say;
We'll pray on hill and pray in dale
For God to let him out of jail;
We'll pray in dale and pray on hill
That Hovind's freedom is God's will;
We'll pray until our throats are hoarse
For God to do the work, of course;
We'll pray--and if you think that's funny,
Look: it sure beats sending money.

Fossil Octopods

They look like modern octopods—they share the basic plan—
The same way that gorillas share the form of modern man.
Creationists will argue, but let’s drop them down a peg:
An octopus is more than just a way to show some leg.

Religious freedom or insanity defense?

In this kid's death, I fear I see
Religion in conspiracy;
The church should also share the blame
For crimes committed in their name.
Indict them all! A public trial
Will let the people see how vile
A group can be--and what is more,
The other churches, by the score,
Will have to choose to take a side:
To let these horrid monsters hide
Behind "religious freedom", or
To try to shut that legal door.
Does freedom of religion mean
Support for actions this obscene?
Let churches choose--they made this bed,
Now sleep--like the kid. Oh, wait. He's dead.


In days of old, when Popes wore gold
But no one wore a condom
One's rod or staff was kept from gaffe
By blessings heaped upon dem
With nothing there but hopeful prayer
To guard against diseases
Not even Popes had any hopes
Of doing as one pleases

To keep the chap from getting clap
The Pope starts staying celibate
His health at stake, he must not break
This vow just for the helibate
The rule holds, too, for me and you;
The reasons, though, not quite:
He says "no glove when you make love"
But only out of spite.

On cephalopod toxins

Pay attention, all you boys 'n
Girls, and stay away from poison!
Toxic proteins work for me,
Because I use a pen, you see.
This poison poet always mocks in
Toxic ink, or inky toxin.
(That line appears intoxicated;
Maybe I'm just addle-pated.)
I think up verses, then I pen 'em,
Dripping with my protein venom.
I bite, or write; my victims curse.
Remember, poison could be verse!