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125603.  Sun Dec 10, 2006 7:02 pm Reply with quote

Long Haired Hippy wrote:
Besides which the sight of a naked female has much the same affect on many men so it would probably be superfluous.

I have just read 'The Road to Mars' a scifi comedy by Eric Idle. It includes a remark to the effect that men have two main organs -- the brain and the penis, but unfortunately only enough blood to keep one going at a time......

125705.  Mon Dec 11, 2006 6:30 am Reply with quote

There was an article in the NS more than a year ago about 2 bugs/beetles (can't remember which) being named after G W Bush and Dick Cheney.

125942.  Mon Dec 11, 2006 10:07 pm Reply with quote

Slime beetles, I believe.

125946.  Tue Dec 12, 2006 12:36 am Reply with quote


King of Quok
132038.  Sun Jan 07, 2007 12:38 pm Reply with quote

andrewmorris wrote:
Any possibility of a humorous name? It always raised a slight smile in an otherwise dull lecture when you came across something of a taxonomic joke.

The plant, Hebe gibby
The snail, Bufonaria borisbeckeri
The fly, Campsicnemius charliechaplini
The mite, Funkotriplogynium iagobadius
The trilobites, Arcticalymene viciousi, A. rotteni, A. jonesi, A. cooki, A. matlocki

Any thoughts on a similarly smirk-worthy name for our anonymous cnidarian?

Can't help with the cnidarians, but a bit further up the evolutionary scale there's a mollusc called 'Thatcheria mirabilis', the Japanese Wonder Shell, which obviously provoked some amusement amongst conchologists (easily amused) during the 1980s when Maggie was on the throne. If it's at all QI it's because it was only known from a single specimen from its discovery in 1877 until the 1930s. It is a very beautiful shell, found in deep water around Japan and the Phillipines and the name actually comemorates one Charles Thatcher, who brought the shell over from Japan mainly becuase the conchologist who described it, G.F. Angas, had no idea what genus to assign it to, so plucked a name from the ether. This is what it looks like:

132161.  Sun Jan 07, 2007 9:54 pm Reply with quote

That, despite any association with the late unlamented Baroness (well I know she's not late yet, but you know what I mean) is an extraordinarily beautiful thing.

132328.  Mon Jan 08, 2007 12:10 pm Reply with quote

It certainly is but what happened to it in the 1930s? Did someone drop it, and step on it?

And BTW, the Baroness is unlamented by me because she is not late. Couldn't stand the voice but she certainly improved my life at the time, and ever since.

132357.  Mon Jan 08, 2007 2:00 pm Reply with quote

Even when she (finally) is late, I won't be lamenting.

King of Quok
132367.  Mon Jan 08, 2007 2:10 pm Reply with quote

BondiTram wrote:
It certainly is but what happened to it in the 1930s? Did someone drop it, and step on it?

Sorry my fault for being unclear! They actually trawled up more of them, since when you can buy them now commercially (I noticed a shop on Brighton prom selling one last week). The original must still be knocking about somewhere.

132752.  Tue Jan 09, 2007 12:42 pm Reply with quote

Thank goodness for that! I imagined some terrible tragedy and was already feeling sorry for the unfortunate who had knocked it off/crushed it.

153720.  Mon Mar 05, 2007 7:49 am Reply with quote

I remember reading up on my cnidarians for an exam a few years back and think they were extremely interesting, don't remember much now though because as with all exam material I forget it quickly afterwards

King of Quok
153782.  Mon Mar 05, 2007 9:13 am Reply with quote

For various reasons that really don't need to be gone in here, I've got back into dinosaurs recently, and some of the discoveries that have been made since I was a child are absolutely remarkable. Aside from all the research, and the disappearance of some of the old stalwarts of the dinsoaur world (I'm looking at you, Anatosaurus), palaeontologists seem to have developed a slightly more gung-ho and facetious attitude to naming new genera. The most amusing one is an ugly looking theropod scientifically named Irritator because the skeleton had originally been doctored and the palaeontologist trying to work out which bits were genuine got really p*ssed off trying to sort out the various bits. Ozraptor is genuinely named after 'Oz' for Australia and one of the brachiosaurs has been re-christened Giraffotitan, which sounds more like some feeble Marvel superhero than a sauropod dinosaur, but puts him on a par with the all-new, revised Anatosaurus, now Anatotitan ('giant duck'). The bastard-to-spell Leaellynasaura, which has been around for a few years and provides very important evidence of dinosaurs living within the Antarctic Circle was apparently named on a whim after the palaeontologists' daughter. He's not new, but I feel most sorry for the pterosaur whose full binomial name is Sordes pilosus. It means 'Hairy filth'. I wonder who he was named in honour of...

153790.  Mon Mar 05, 2007 9:25 am Reply with quote

Ozzy Osborne, perhaps?

King of Quok
153840.  Mon Mar 05, 2007 11:55 am Reply with quote

Hahahahaha! I like that, though perhaps they should turn Ozraptor into Ozzyraptor for him instead. I was actually thinking of John Barrowman, but I guess he'd only cover the 'sordes' bit of Sordes pilosus.

Here are some more rather quirky dinosaur names. There is a genus called Bambiraptor, small theropods related to the more famous Velociraptor, although more bird-like, and, yes, named after Disney's bug-eyed fawn. Borogovia, a late Cretaceous troodontid, fared better, being named after the mimsy borogoves in 'Jabberwocky'. Cryolophosaurus (=frozen crested lizard) narrowly got out of being called Elvisaurus (=Elvis' lizard) because of its cute little quiff, which would rather have undermined its status as a dinosaur from present-day Antarctica. Kenneth Carpenter named the very early Triassic carnivore Gojirasaurus after the Japanese word 'Gojira' (=Godzilla). And the only dinosaur to contain one of the Bantu click consonants in its name is the African coelurosaur Nqwebwesaurus. I love dinosaurs all over again.

gerontius grumpus
154361.  Tue Mar 06, 2007 6:28 pm Reply with quote

samivel wrote:
Even when she (finally) is late, I won't be lamenting.

Elvis Costello wrote an excellent song called 'Stamp the Dirt Down' about not lamenting her when she's late.


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