Why do people keep cutting me in half to see if my insides are green?

In my quest to find a daily topic to write about, I have decided to select the first thing that pops in to my mind–a rather risky method as evidenced by yesterday’s foray into the world of armpit hair.  Today, however, a more polite (although equally random) subject has emerged from my cranium.  Kiwi birds.

"Damn, I'm cute."

“Damn, I’m cute.”

First of all, I have to put this out there.  It sucks to be a kiwi. Forget feeling sorry for the IQ-challenged dodo.  And don’t waste your pity on the ostrich with his head in the sand.  The unfortunate kiwi is the feathered friend truly deserving of your sympathy. To begin with, he cannot fly.  His bones aren’t hollow like other bird bones and his wings are short and stubby–making him the T-Rex of birds.

Secondly, they lay the largest eggs in relation to their body size out of any bird in the world.  Mama Kiwi is the size of a chicken, but she lays eggs the size of an ostrich’s.  If you thought childbirth was a bitch, be glad you didn’t have to lay an egg the size of your pillow.  And that’s one of those big puffy pillows–not your old down-filled one that has been flattened to a crepe.  You know, the yellowed, drool-riddled Obusform that, as Jerry Seinfeld would say “looks more like a Civil War bandage.”

Kiwi egg

But, they do have nostrils on their beaks.  I don’t know if that’s a blessing or a curse.  It all depends on whether or not he’s planning on visiting my husband after bean night.

“Beak” the Kiwi Beanie Baby was produced for only one year and sadly can now be purchased for a cent online.  Yes, even the plush versions of our little New Zealander have it rough.  Ironically, New Zealanders of the human kind are referred to as “Kiwis.”  But what about the green fuzzy fruit?

Meet Beak.

Meet Beak.

The kiwi bird has had its name hijacked by that odd-looking furry fruit.  The fruit is actually called a “kiwifruit” and is not, in fact, a “kiwi” at all.  A kiwi smoothie, therefore, is not what you think it is.  Ack.


This little bird, however, has enjoyed fame thanks to a manufacturer of shoe polish.  Yes, since 1906, KIWI’s name and image has been splashed across the front of this product that is now available worldwide.  The company’s founder chose the name “KIWI” in honour of his New Zealand-born wife.  Plus, he thought the bird looked nice on his small round tins.

A retro Kiwi tin.

A retro Kiwi tin.

I’m not sure if being the star of the “laces and polishes” racks in stores across the world makes up for the stubby arms, giant egg-laying, and low value in the Beanie Baby trade.  If you see a kiwi, give it a hug.  Odds are that the poor bugger has been through a lot.

If it’s any consolation to the kiwi community, people are blogging about you:

Conservation blog: http://blog.doc.govt.nz/2013/08/27/kaipara-kiwi/

Factotum of Arts: http://factotum-of-arts.com/2013/08/12/weekend-finishes-12-08-2013/

Infinite Sadness…or Hope?  http://infinitesadnessorhope.wordpress.com/tag/kiwi-bird/

B (heart) D: http://baileyolivia.wordpress.com/2013/07/06/when-i-say-kiwi-you-think/

Do you call the kiwifruit a kiwi?  

kiwi prep

Images courtesy of:  cute kiwi (http://pinterest.com/pin/553168766700624424/), Kiwi egg (http://misswrightenglish.blogspot.ca/2012/09/kiwis.html), Beak (http://stuffedanimaltoys.guidestobuy.com/ty-beanie-baby-kiwi#chitika_close_button), kiwi vs kiwi (http://shibbynempahcold.deviantart.com/art/Kiwi-VS-Kiwi-Bird-21535732), polish (http://longwhitekid.wordpress.com/category/kiwi-boot-polish-co/), kiwi prep (http://kevinw.de/greenbird/2010/04/26/how-to-prepare-a-kiwi/).

Flying Fish, Old Toads, Newfie Horses, and A Joke or Two

“If you’re too open-minded; your brains will fall out.”  Lawrence Ferlinghetti.  

UGH!  I am one giant mosquito bite.  The worst is the one on my butt cheek.  Nothing more embarrassing than being caught scratching your ass.  I keep having to stop typing, so I can drag my nails across it.  Hence, the short sentences.

I’m not quite sure what purpose the mosquito serves.  I know…they are a food source for birds, other bugs etc.  But there are lots of small, flying insects that don’t give those of us at the top of the food chain giant, itchy welts.  Why must we have ones that bite?  And spread West Nile?  I know.  Who am I to question God and His infinite wisdom?  Sorry God.  I’m just really itchy.

1)  Let’s face it.  The “land down under” is a unique and wonderful place.  It’s hard for we Canadians to imagine a road trip filled with koala and kangaroo sightings, picking a fuzzy kiwi fruit off a tree, or mastering our boomerang throw.  In comparison, we seem boring.  Beavers, moose, maple syrup taps, and hockey pucks.

Our festivals are ordinary too–winter carnivals and plough matches.  You never hear a Canadian say, “had a great time flinging fish last night, mate!”  Why is this?  Unlike our Australian counterparts, we have never truly learned to appreciate the skill and finesse required to participate in a good, old-fashioned “Tuna Throwing Contest.”  Who needs a Noble prize, an Oscar, or Olympic Gold when one can achieve true greatness by becoming the official Banska Tuna Toss World Champion!

I wonder how this tradition came about?  Was someone suddenly overcome with the need to fling a fish?  Maybe some poor children deprived of water balloons were forced to resort to pelting one another with seafood.  Who knows?  (I’d love to hear your theories).

Either way, it breaks my heart to know that somewhere in this fare land there is a small boy whose fish chucking abilities will go to waste.  Pity.

2)  Today was a very “toady” day at our house.  In fact, without trying, my husband and I encountered four of the bumpy looking creatures in various parts of our yard in just a couple of hours.

He was trying to get one to move into a cuter picture pose (well, cute for a toad) and I said that we had probably scared weeks off the poor thing’s life.  Surely, a toad couldn’t have YEARS shaved off it’s life!  Turns out that I was highly mistaken.

According to BBC and many other sources, the common toad can live for up to 40 years.  Yes “four-zero.”  Who knew?  A pet toad is a much wiser investment than your French Poodle or your Tabby Cat.

Okay… I will have to put you on hold for sixty minutes.  Must go watch  Howard Stern on American’s Got Talent.  

I’m back.  Thanks for waiting.  Here’s a joke from Tom Cotter, NYC stand-up comedian and AGT hopeful…””I used to go over and bounce on my neighbor’s tramparlene. Yeah, their daughter’s name was Arlene.” Haha.

3)  The Weather Network has the best polls, but then again, I love polls.  Any chance to give one of my many strong opinions is A-okay in my books.  Yes, I wear flip-flops.  I think our summer will be hot and humid (which really is a no-brainer).  No, I’m not afraid of thunder storms.  These are all easy questions and I was quick with my answers.  But then I came across one that stumped me–does Newfoundland have its own breed of pony?  I correctly hazard a guess and say “yes.”  It only makes sense.  Why put “Newfoundland” and “pony” in the same sentence unless it is true?

Turns out that our ultra-friendly, joke-providing, good-natured neighbours from the east also boast an equestrian treasure–the Newfoundland Pony.  Who knew?

They are noted for their strength, stamina, and the fact that they are easy to keep.  I would tell you their height, but it was stated in a unit that I am totally unfamiliar with–“hh.”  If you know what “hh” is, let us know in the comment box at the bottom of the blog page.  It would be greatly appreciated by us all.

Well, I’ve never met a Newfie that I didn’t like, so I’m sure their ponies are loveable little creatures too.

And one last Tom Cotter joke:

On the morning of my 16th birthday my family tried to surprise me with a car…but they missed.