Thursday, January 26, 2012

Playing? Or, a life and death struggle between hummingbird and honeybee? / WHS 2014 reunion

had some inquiries* about yesterday's SRN-featured
tiny-tongued bat
 so we revisited the video clip 
(furnished by St. Paul, MN RR museum docent, Bob Heeschen, 
play it -

Indeed, the bat was stopped by our digital
aimed at the monitor 
as he lapped cactus nectar
with a minature (but not so for him) tongue.
And that was not all the delightful  video

Hummingbirds' whirring wings were slowed
by the slow-motion filming videomaker 
to allow us to witness what
in real time would be barely visible:
a hummingbird did roll-over flips through the air 
with a competing nectar gatherer, 
a honeybee.

Over and over the hummingbird rolled
as it chased the bee away
- I tried roll-overs in 1966 in a Cessna 150 single-wing; it was chancy -
 the bee/bird encounter happened
so fast that it nearly escaped the eye
were it not  for slow-motion photography.

Just before that, a hummingbird flew
into a spider's web and was nearly caught
by an also hungry spider.

No matter how tiny the tongues of
some animals are
the urge of nourishment attainment
is universally potent.

The tongue shape
is an oft-repeated theme
in nature.

Bill Vollmer, using his tongue, cleans wall-eyes he caught in the Menominee River
near Marinette WI

Yesterday I bought a can of Pringles
and thought of a tongue
as I placed a Pringle on my 
own similar tongue.

A battle of tongues
so to speak.
The frail potato chip wafer
was no match for my 
75 year old crushing proboscis.

And it was not easy to eat just one.


And speaking in of tongues,

Fellow classmates at Waukesha High School, class of 1954, are planning
another, yet another reunion, for the year 2014.  That will be their sixtieth

As fresh meat, I have been gently pressured - tongue-talked - into participating in a planning committee
for this elderly event.  Although I have not gone to a single reunion, ever,
when the tongue screws were turned by Bill Nelson (above center top)
and Sally (Martin) von Briesen (below, leading a cheer)
and augmented by another '54 classmate, Jack Hill
(see the end of this link to a post
all three, coaxing, coaxing, coaxing.....

I said today - OK, count me in.
It could be fun.
I might have been missing something.......

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