Monday, April 19, 2021

edible reputation

One of the units of a textbook I'm working on is about "animal defenses," specifically, bizarre animal defenses.  The hagfish gets a mention because it exudes a disgusting goo that predators find impossible to swallow.  The fulmar, a cliff-dwelling bird, also gets a mention because it vomits a sticky goo (are you sensing a theme?) at its attackers—a goo so sticky that it can glue feathers together and cause the predator to fall into the ocean.  Among the vocabulary words in this unit are "edible" and "reputation"—the latter word being used in relation to sea cucumbers, which can expel their own guts through their anus to deter predators, thus earning a reputation as a bad prospect for a meal.  (The guts are coated with poison, and sea cucumbers can regrow their expelled viscera.)  Anyway, in one vocab-related exercise, the words "edible" and "reputation" appear side by side, which prompted some interesting thoughts about edible reputations.  Sometimes, the universe itself is your Muse.

No comments: