Thursday, April 07, 2005

Intellectual Food

Here is what I learned today while I was working on my Milton presentation. The presentation is on how Eve's desire for knowledge is sinful according to Milton. So far this is the information I have gathered:

1. Snuffleupagus was only able to be seen by Big Bird until 1988 when the writers on Sesame Street decided that this sent the wrong message to children.
2. "Snuffleupagus" is the name of the species. Snuffy's actual name is Aloysius. Aloysius, I recall, was also the name of Sebastian's teddy bear in Brideshead Revisited. The fact that Sebastian had a teddy bear while at university may have contributed to his becoming an irredeemable alcoholic. I myself would say that is the wrong message.
3. The word "orange" did not come to be used for the color orange until 1542. Before that they called orange "tawny" (or "tenne" in French). There is suprisingly little information about medieval names for colors on the Internet. Very disappointing.
4. The song "Ring Around the Rosy" has nothing to do with the Black Plague. I secretly still believe that it does too.
5. The mucus you spit up when you get the plague has a name, and that name is "sputum." Dah-licious.

And that, my friends, is why you should never disobey God.

Names, dates, translations, and other information included above may be incorrect.

2 comments:

.Maeve said...

aloysius is the patron saint of youth [hence brideshead], but also of relief from pestilence -- interesting in light of points 4 and 5.
http://www.catholic-forum.com/saints/sainta08.htm yay catholicism.

Matthew said...

Eww. So that's why I didn't get well quicker last summer. I wasn't specific in my ailment to identify the sputum correctly. Silly me.

Tawney is a fabulous word for a color. I like it muy mucho!