If, like me, you were dying to know the difference between a marsh, a swamp and a bog, here’s a link that will sort it all out for you before your next nature walk. I warn you though that it’s not as simple as it seems and fens enter into it also. And don’t even get me going on shrub swamps and forested swamps.
If, on the other hand, you’re sound on wetlands, but somewhat confused about our winged insect buddies’ private lives, this site will explain why that old Don Ameche movie was called “Cocoon” rather than “Chrysalis”. However, after defining the terms, it goes on to say that there’s some confusion about which is which or even whether they’re both the same thing, so maybe not. It also insists that the bag of protein and mucus that earthworms excrete to protect their eggs are cocoons. Now, really!
And finally, if to your chagrin, you find one day that your almost-adult son doesn’t know the fifty states and their capitals, or, worse yet, that you don’t, take heart. Most Americans don’t know how many states there are, never mind their names and major cities. You can learn everything you need to know about the 50 states at any of the websites on this page. My favorite part of the page is this puzzle where one has to fit the state onto the US map. I have to confess that the rousing music distracted me, which may be why I had such a hard time with the first state which happened to be Maine. It was worth the effort though, because when I finally caught on to the fact that it was my home state that I was trying to fit into every other state, I got a little lobster icon to top it off.
I’m easily amused. But then, it is winter in Maine, where the state crustacean is the lobster. It bothers me that every time anyone uses the danged thing as a Maine icon, the lobster is red, which means that it’s dead. So, I guess you could say that Maine is the only state that has a dead crustacean for their official crustacean. We even have it on our license plates, which aren’t really license plates because our cars are registered, not licensed. And don’t get me going on that. It doesn’t take much to get a Mainer irritated this time of year. It’s even easier in Blackfly Season, so I’d appreciate it if you wouldn’t bring it up then either.