Archive for May, 2012

Romance between a vowel and a consonant..

May 31, 2012

A consonant walks into a bar and sits down next to a vowelly girl.
“Hi!” he says. “I’ll alphabet that you’ve never been here before.”
“Of cursive I have,” she replies. “I come here, like, all the time.

For me, it’s parse for the course.”

The consonant remains stationery, enveloped by the vowelly girl’s

letter-perfect charm.

“Here’s a cute joke” he states declaratively. “Up at the North Pole,

St. Nicholas is the main Claus. His wife is a relative Claus. His children

are dependent Clauses. Their Dutch uncle is a restrictive Claus.

And Santa’s elves are subordinate Clauses. As a group, they’re all renoun Clauses.”

Then he lays on some more dashes of humor: “Have you heard about the

fellow who had half his digestive tract removed? He walked around with a semi-colon.”

“Are you like prepositioning me?” asks the vowelly girl.

“I won’t be indirect. You are the object of my preposition. Your beauty phrase my nerves.

Won’t you come up to my place for a coordinating conjunction?”

“I don’t want to be diacritical of you, but you’re like, such a boldfaced character!”

replies the vowelly girl. “Like do I have to spell it out to you, or are you just plain

comma-tose? You’re not my type, so get off my case!”

Despite his past perfect, he is, at present, tense.

“Puhleeze, gag me with a spoonerism!” she objects. “As my Grammar and other

correlatives used to say, your mind is in the guttural. I resent your umlautish behavior.

You should know what the wages of syntax are. I nominative absolutely decline to conjugate with you fer sure!”

“You get high quotation marks for that one,” he smiles, “even if I think you’re being rather

subjunctive and moody about all this. I so admire your figure of speech that I would like

to predicate my life on yours.” So he gets himself into an indicative mood and says,

“It would be appreciated by me if you would be married to me.”

“Are you being passive aggressive?” she asks interrogatively.

“No, I’m speaking in the active voice. Please don’t have a vowel movement about this.

I simile want to say to you, ‘Metaphors be with you!’ I would never want to change you

and become a misplaced modifier. It’s imperative that you understand that I’m very, very

font of you and want us to spend infinitive together.”

“That’s quite a compliment,” she blushes — and gives him appositive response.

At the ceremonies they exchange wedding vowels about the compound subject of marriage.
Finally, they say, “I do,” which is actually the longest and most complex of sentences

— a run-on sentence, actually — one that we all hope won’t turn out to be a sentence fragment.
Then the minister diagrams that sentence and says, “I now pronouns you consonant and vowel.”
They kiss each other on the ellipsis and whisper to each other, “I love you, noun forever.”

Throughout their marriage, their structure is perfectly parallel and their verbs never disagree with their subjects.
After many a linking verve, comma splice and interjection, they conceive the perfect parent thesis.

Then come some missing periods and powerful contractions, and into the world is born their beautiful little boy.

(They know it is a boy – because of its dangling participle)

Weed…or not…

May 31, 2012

nettle  290512 stacey park

What’s called a weed
Can often be so beautiful.
Who decides what a weed is?
If it thrives,
And survives
In spite of what a human’s need is…
It exists, and is not dutiful…
Springs up in spite of every poison feed:
Pay heed;
It is not “just” a weed.

How to open the pantry door

May 31, 2012

When we say we’re hanging out at home, we’re hanging out at home!

Games on a holiday afternoon….

May 30, 2012

First, the family assembles, having decided on a “staycation” for Memorial Day weekend:

1 memory game 270512

KTB proves pretty good at remembering where similar cards are:

2 memory game 270512

But alas, she’s far more interested in the coloured ribbon:

3 memory game 270512

And though she takes her turn,

4 memory game 270512

Is still far too rapt…literally wrapped…with the ribbon.

5 memory game 270512

Her mother sort of sweeps the game:

6 memory game 270512

From L to R, pile 1 is KTB, 2 is me, 3 is KTB’s mom, and 4 is KTB’s dad! Much squabbling ensues between Mom and Dad about the results.

Before this, of course, the ribbons were used gymnastically:

2 ribbon play 270512

And a very St.Louis-type arch results:

ribbon play 270512

The simple joys of being at home together!

Marilyn Monroe and her billowing skirt…

May 29, 2012

One member of a mailing list I belong to started by showing a statue of Marilyn Monroe in the famous “billowing-up skirt” pose on a ventilation grating, being put up in Chicago. What was interesting to me about the photograph was that the head of MM was completely covered…but obviously, the men on the list took off in a different (northward) direction.

V wrote:

Weather Conditions – Palm Springs, CA

In the desert town of Palm Springs, California
Where Marilyn moved in just two days ago
The temperatures are hot but not unduly hot
Just about ninety degrees Fahrenheit hot
And the winds are very light
Close to zero miles per hour – with breezes from the Southeast
The tourists gawking at Marilyn
Are no doubt finding the air hotter – much hotter
And asking – I am only guessing –
“Just how windy does it ever get over here? Oh, just asking!”


He then added:

Her Timeless Marilynness

Her yellow gold hair
Her parted ruby lips
Her sultriness seductive

Her sun ripened womanhood
Her billowing skirt
Her simulated modesty

Her innocence disarming
Her come hither allure
Her husky crooning voice

Her sad sad smile
Her rudely shortened life
Her timeless Marilynness


To this, B replied:

To the actual content, however, it’s not the wind that did the deed. The classic Marilyn picture was her dress blowing up because of the gusts that usually emanate from such a subway vent.


You will notice that the statue also has such a grate or vent under it.


To this, V’s response was:

OK, that means I need to correct myself. How about this?

A Star on a Subway Vent

On the subway vent where Marilyn stood
Let us place a star, New Yorkers!
As they did in Rodeo Drive
As they are doing, no doubt
On some puffy, floating silver cloud above


After a little to-and-fro, he added:

I’d be surprised, though, if we don’t have a Subway Sandwich franchise or two in Ahmedabad.


At this point, M, one of the 3 ladies in the egroup, replied:

My son survives on subway sandwiches in Ahmedabad these days…he is working there.

PS please do continue with this banter…..we love it 🙂


B’s response:

Okay, in that case: No subway grates, but great Subways.

Who needs Marilyns when we have Kokilabens and Shardabens?
Not that any sari clad Kokilaben or Shardaben would ever step on a subway grate, even if we had a subway 😉

I somehow doubt that the impact would not be the same if they did. No gold stars, no statues to honor Kokiben or Shardaben, no Vasus writing poetry after the event.


My final response was:

On this egroup there are thoughts profound
Which gather not a peep or sound.
But let the topic be M., Marilyn…
Then watch everyone joining in!
Well,if I, too, had legs that great,
I”d be stepping over *every* ventilation grate.
But M, M, and U (in my rhyming verse)
Are not in the running for Ms.Universe.
Their brains and their versatile talents
Are what matters in the end, you gents!
And the rest of us spouses married you guys
Because we thought you lot are smart and wise.
So…the only use for ventilation
Is, pure and simple…titillation.
We don’t need these “updraft” wiles
To keep our men all wreathed in smiles.
Our waists may have more circumference,
But we make up for that in common sense….

These mailing lists are “grate” fun sometimes!

Creve Coeur, BioBlitz, 260512

May 26, 2012

I’d signed up for the

Bio Blitz

walks in Creve Coeur (the name means, “Broken Heart”, I’ve posted more about it in

this post

I put up the photos and a narrative on Facebook,

click here to see them

I also got the following videos:

Un id Snake in the Grass:

Un id Rollerblader on the path:

Indigo Bunting calling:

Prothonotary Warbler calling (what a name!)

(The American Goldfinch is slightly smaller than this bird and has a black patch on its head…and a different beak, too.)

Hope you enjoyed the Bio Blitz outing as much as I did!

Don’t miss a single part of this….

May 26, 2012

Don’t miss a single part of this….

chicken lally pup

Akash Dube: Always with us

May 24, 2012

Here’s a well-written account about

Akash Dube

He’s won a permanent victory over the illness. And he’s inspired us all, too.

Akash Dube May 2012

Akash…you are always with us, in our hearts and memories, as are your family. Wonderful people, all of you.

Sunlight on water…

May 22, 2012

As I walk in the morning, I often find the sprinklers on in various homes, and sometimes, in the early morning sunlight, they look utterly beautiful…

1 sprinkler 130512

The light plays through the water drops like a mischieveous child with her family…and they, too, reflect the light each in their own way….

6 sprinkler 130512

I am going to post an album of “light-and-water” pics as a Facebook album, will give the link when I finish…..right now, I have an incredibly joyful task ahead of me…

Sharing…not sharing…

May 22, 2012

On a lighter note (we saw this bird) and hence this question popped up.
Did you some one you asked did not disclose this location ?

In other words, was I sour-graping because I was not being told the location of this (or any othe recently discovered) bird?

My response to him:

Ha, ha, Vinaya, I know better than to ask for the location! Have I asked you? (I know you saw it.) No, it’s not a case of sour grapes…in fact, the reverse, as I have given the location of various birds to many expert birders, after discovering them by sheer accident (eg . Indian Eagle Owl at Ramnagara or Turahalli.) I can confidently say, go look in Valley School, you will find the Indian Eagle Owl. This does not guarantee that the person will see it!

I am a well-known “L-birder”….I have neither the knowledge nor the scientific background to quality. 🙂 Neither will I ask where the Pratincole, or the Emu, or the Mute Swan, the Roc, or the Phoenix, are to be found. Most birds will, for me, be found only within the covers of my Grimmskipp , Salam Salim, Pam Aunty, or Kashmirjack. You think I will go on a ship-without-a-toilet to see pelagic birds? The answer is, Gua—no!

We’ve already had the hilarious situation, in Lalbagh, of a totally non-bird interested jogger coming up and telling us, “Some crows are harassing some bird which I don’t know, can you help?” It proved to be the Mottled Wood Owl. No humans (birders or non-birders) were troubling it…but it was the ever-present mobsters, the crows.The Mottled Wood Owls, in spite of the Lalbagh crowds, have been at their location off and on over the years.

My birding friends here in St.Louis, Mark Glenshaw, Chris Ferree, Mary Dueren (Audubon Society) and Danny Brown (Wildlife photographer and conservation scientist) , freely share the location of birds and animals in Forest Park, with me. That doesn’t mean that I can see them all the time! In fact, in the heights and the thick foliage of the Cottonwood trees, even when Mark is showing me where the huge female Great Horned Owl is sitting…it takes me several minutes to spot her. It took me a week of scouting the right area before I saw the mink family, and the little baby mink came up to my feet and looked up at me!

Oh well…there are valid things about both points of view (share and don’t share) and ne’er the twain shall meet…unfortunately, birding is becoming a “I-know-so-and-so-who-will-tell-me-where-x-bird-is-to-be-found” kind of activity. This is why I like my UGS (Usual Gang of Suspects)…we are a happy-go-lucky lot who are as thrilled to see an Agama in front of the Udupi Banashree Darshini as we are to see a Crested Hawk Eagle at Nandi Hills! We don’t want the secret birds……where the ordinary birds are, is secret enough for us most of the time!

Cheers, Deepa.