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Rod's Ramblings 2010

Time is relative, travelogues are so yesterday and I lack the discipline to write each day. So here is a non-linear chronology of retrospective travel reminisces of my recent odyssey to amuse, edify and frustrate you. If this isn't what you signed up for then email me and I will return your money - please keep the steak knives.

Diary Entries

Friday, 22 October 2010

Location: Vancouver, Canada

Why the salmon are red.

Scene – HQ Gaia Planetary Control. CEO sitting at desk working on laptop. Knock at door. Senior Planner – Homeostasis Division enters looking focused.

SP: “Good morning Sir. We have a problem in the Pacific”
CEO: “Hmmm. What is it #2?”
SP: “Our nutrient cycling loop is malfunctioning Sir. The ocean up-wellings are working as planned so our vertical transport component is ok but the lateral transport mechanisms are not working Sir”.
CEO “Hmmmm. Not working … whats the problem #2?”
SP “We put in too many rivers Sir”
CEO “Too many rivers?”
SP “Yes Sir. The downstream transport mechanism is too efficient. Its overwhelming the other system components. Sir”.
CEO Hmmm. Well we had that excess water problem when the glaciers began to melt. That’s why we put in all those rivers. And everyone loves all those rivers. Quite pretty really. Still, we’ll just have to turn them off #2”
SP “No Sir”
CEO (Mildly annoyed) “What do you mean no?
SP “We can’t just turn them off Sir. We have invested too heavily in the water infrastructure and too many other systems rely on them. Turning them off will create havoc and the investors will crucify us Sir”
CEO “Hmmm. What do you suggest #2?”
SP (looking smug) “Fish, Sir”
CEO (looking bewildered) “Fish, #2?”
SP “Yes, Sir. Fish. Large oceanic fish that swim upstream and die”
CEO “How will that work #2?”
SP “Well, Sir. Well need millions of them but we’ll take a small fish and make it feed in the ocean up-welling region till it is large. Then it swims upstream and dies and releases its nutrients upstream”
CEO “Hmmm. What’s in it for the fish #2?”
SP “They get to die for the cause Sir”
CEO “Well that’s good I suppose”
SP “And they get to reproduce before they die and their offspring travel back down to the ocean to collect more nutrient before coming back upstream again”
CEO “Sounds ingenious #2. Well done. How far will they have to travel?”
SP “Depends Sir, But some will need to travel a few thousand miles”
CEO “They can do that?”
SP “Oh yes, Sir. The technology is quite advanced these days”
CEO “Very good #2. I see one problem though. What’s to stop all these new fish eating all the food of the fish that are already there?”
SP “Good point Sir. The new fish will be programmed to stop feeding once they enter the freshwater parts of the river, Sir. The nomenclature group want to call them Salmon, Sir”
CEO “And how will we be able to tell the salmon from the other fish?”
SP “We’ll colour code them Sir. What colour would you prefer?”
CEO “Well, I’ve always liked red…”
SP “Very good, Sir. I’ll call wardrobe…”

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Recent Messages

From Joss
Well I never, I would not have suspected you were a sort of less destructive Gerald Dural (?).

I think Einstein had something to say about relative time too. He is a well known physicist whom you may not have heard of being a naturalist. However I congratulate you on coming up with this relativity theory on your own account. I did something similar re plate tectonics and evolution when I was 12 and discovered later that someone had thought of it already. I must confess I had not figured out the mechanisms of these processes at that stage but I suspected something was going on. It was all too convenient and coincidental that these " shapes and designs" I was seeing were chance occurences. I digress though.

Humming birds are prepostera indeed. I saw another in my compost heap yet to identify it. I am familiar with the hot footedness of birds and their body tempertures are phenomenal, born menopausal perhaps? Or embarassed maybe. I thought the "lingering heat" of the footprint description was delightful, and on recollection is in fact true of my own experience.

The "a" ending of your prepostera is reminiscent of Insect families. I am sure you would agree that in many, if not all cases, insecta could even be replaced by prepostera in toto but now there is an opportunity to include plants animals and birds to this phylogenic "Kingdom". The mantis shrimp "Gonodactylus sp" is a crustacean candidate for this new kingdom too I would suggest along with Limulus the horseshoe crab. Just plain dodgy inventions. Some of we humans may also warrant classification into this new high level taxon.

I have seen these trogons in pictures and yes they could possibly be accorded Prepostera status by virtue of their diet and feeding behaviour as opposed to design.

You might wish to create sub kingdoms of Prepostera with two main branches. The first purely based on appearances and the second based on behaviour only. This will require some thought.

So Quetzals eat avocadoes whole do they? Good greif! They must be the size of cassowaries.

This is as far as I have got in your travel log but I shall return.

I have a report due.

All the best....I look forward to mincing words with you and will focus more on alliteration perhaps in my next missive.

Malapropisms and spoonerisms are more my cup of tea though...but it makes it difficult to serain remious.
Response: Hi Chris,
Yes I think the entire phylogeny of life is up for review. And Insecta need special attention. There is not a single ghastly alien type behaviour as displayed by Hollywood type aliens that is not already occuring daily in the insect kingdom - perhaps a new phyla Gruesomeptera is required. Rod
From Donna Mason
Hi Rod,

Sounds like you having the time of your life :-) I look forward to future installments!

Oliver was born on 7 June, Mervs birthday. Did you get the text/email. I know lots also bounced. He is an absolute treasure. Easiest kid yet!

How much longer will you be living my dream :-) (when are you heading home?) Love the Masons
Response: Hey, welcome to the world Oliver. I look forward to meeting you. Home in a couple weeks. Rod