Because the beaver isn't just an animal; it's an ecosystem!

The Martinez Beavers

Not A Beaver: Part XCXVIII

Share the beaver gospel!

See this picture? It is from this year’s number 1 website (according to ebizMBA rankings) which of course is the Huffington post. It’s actually NOT a website per se, but rather a news aggregate site, which takes stories and columnists from all over.  (Like if there were thousands of beaver writers around the globe and I could just pick which ones of them to feature.) (Imagine that!)  It sold for a cool 315 million to AOL in 2011 and Arianna herself was made editor in chief of the Huffington Post media group – which, in addition to the lucrative advertising deal, means ultimately she’s responsible for this.

This ‘beaver’ is number 44 in their end of the year animal photos. ‘Year end’ means they already posted it before. You can bet I already wrote to helpfully explain that beavers never, ever do the backstroke and they ignored me and blithely continued to mislabel it. I actually believe I exchanged emails with the photographer some where along the way who was embarrassed to have got his trip to the zoo photos mixed up. But never mind. His mistake is now a photo of the year.

I again pointed out the mistake, as did some other people with eyeballs and frontal lobes. But never mind. It’s a photo of the year now. Or misnomer of the year if you will.

“Oh, I’m sorry, my dears,” Uncle Monty said, wiping his eyes with his hands. “You must be very frightened. But the Incredibly Deadly Viper is one of the least dangerous and most friendly creatures in the animal kingdom. Sunny has nothing to worry about, and neither do you.”

Klaus looked at his baby sister, who was still in his arms, as she playfully gave the Incredibly Deadly Viper a big hug around its thick body, and he realized Uncle Monty must be telling the truth. “But then why is it called the Incredibly Deadly Viper?”

Uncle Monty laughed again. “It’s a misnomer,” he said, using a word which here means “a very wrong name.”

(And by the way, if you never treated yourself to any Lemony Snickett, what on earth are you waiting for?)

Well some misnomers bring weirdly good fortune I guess, because this morning an old friend wrote me after seeing my post on the gargantuan aggregate and was very pleased to learn I was helping beavers. This particular friend traveled with me as a fellow disciple through the thick inkblot-laden forest of graduate school and once decorated a cake to look exactly like card X to honor a beloved professor. If you have any wish at all to know what on earth I’m about, here is my entire dissertation in Haiku:

This looks like a bat
But people cooking dinner
Will get you discharged