Tenticular Gesticulation

Being a blog about my inexplicable fascination with octopodes

NOTE: I am not a marine biologist, I am just an idiot with a blog

Entries for September 2015

Dumbo the Flying Octopus

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I've meant to do a post about the Dumbo Octopus for a while now, and then reader Joe Yarbrough sent me this video. It's a pretty good five minute documentary about the Opistoteuthis family, with lots of excellent footage. And yes, it's pretty adorable.

The Jungle Batman vs. The Giant Octopus

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Happy Batman Day! Remember that time Batman and Robin were stranded on a tropical island, became Jungle Batman and Robin, and then fought a giant octopus? It happened in August of 1952 in Batman #72. Check it out!

Swimming in Sardinia

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What an amazing treat for this diver, and he appears to be treating the octopus respectfully. It also looks to me like she has one short tentacle. Very likely she lost one previously and is now growing a new one. Way cool!

I Don't Need No Camouflage

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Why use camouflage when you can just hide? The southern sand octopus can shoot jets of water into the ocean floor and burrow her way into her own personal hidey-hole. You might say she's the floppity floppity trap door spider of the sea.

Yarr! Happy Talk Like An (Octo)Pirate Day!

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In honor of International Talk Like a Pirate Day I have not one, not two, but THREE pirat-y octopodes to share.

Artist Cacodaemonia gives us this glorius pirate octopus:

Next up, if anyone would like to chrochet me a gift for Christmas, Sarah Horrocks has a lovely pattern for you to use:

Finally, for the non-crafty types, here is a lovely plush Pirate Octopus available on Amazon:

Avast ye hearties! Go drink some rum and bury some treasure!

Happy (Posthumous) Birthday, Joe Kubert

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A bonus second post today, because I just learned that today would have been the 89th birthday of comics artist legend Joe Kubert. The man was one of the true greats of the industry, particularly at DC. Check out this November 1973 cover from Korak: Son of Tarzan.

The Miracle of Life

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Have you ever seen a clutch of octopus eggs hatching? No snark here, it is really just unbelievably cool.

Nazi Octopus

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It started with an awful joke ("How does an octopus go to war? Well-armed!"), which led to googling "octopus war", which led to this amazing Nazi propeganda poster. So, just an average morning here at Shmoolok Estates.

Translation: Know the risk! Select Austrian People's Party

Octopus paxarbolis

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A special thank you to reader David Brown for reminding us all to take a moment to remember the plight of the Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus. Without our help, these magnificent creatures may well disappear forever. (Almost as if they had never existed at all...)

The Tragic Life and Career of Oodaku

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This one comes indirectly from reader Chuck Rogers, who sent me a photo of Oodaku lounging on the beach in Okinawa. That led me to wondering, what ever happened to Oodaku? He had such a promising film career in the 60's. Fortunately, "Behind the Kaiju" is here with the answer.

"He was the best damn cephalapod in the business, and don't let anybody tell you any different!" - Baragon

Buck Rogers vs. The Octopus

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Here is a gorgeous cover from the 1955 comic Famous Funnies #215, featuring Buck Rogers. The artwork is by legendary fantasy artist Frank Frazetta.

Seriously, Lady, I'm Not Interested!

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I have such mixed feelings about this clip. The footage is amazing, and that tenticle reach early on is just hypnotic (but watch out, it might be the hectocotylus). But  after the first minute, the octopus decides he's not interested and wants to be left alone, at which point he is pursued for another two minutes by this cackling photographer. I mean, seriously, you got your shot. Leave the poor guy alone.

The Friendly Octopus of Terror

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I have been infatuated with the artwork of Karen Hallion for some time now. She did an entire series of Doctor Who / Disney mashups, and then followed it up with a series of Star Wars / Haunted Mansion paintings. You can check out her awesome t-shirt designs here at TeeFury. Two days ago she posted a picture of Stich playing with BB-8 from the new Star Wars movie. What I am saying is, as an artist she speaks direclty to my soul. So I guess I shouldn't have been surprised when she posted this picture yesterday:

It is for a new card game called Wizard School being done by Hank Green. Apparently the Kickstarter goes live next week, as soon as that happens I will come back here and post a link.

Happy Labor Day

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I guess this is the first Labor Day since 1966 where there has not been an MDA Telethon (and I gather lots of people are happy about it). In any case, here then is my own weird free-association from Labor Day to the MDA Telethon to Jerry Lewis to...  Jerry getting an underwater makeover by a cephalapod stylist? Huh. Ok, whatever.

I'll let Rick tell this one....

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Reader John Abenroth sent me this joke. It's awful. So awful I can't bring myself to tell it. Besides, Rick Grimes already has it covered for me:

I'm sorry.

Master of Disguise

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I love this clip SO MUCH. Even on re-watch, when you know exactly where the octopus is hiding (in plain sight!), your eyes still won't let you see it.


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This one has made the rounds on the internet, but not here so far. I give you the fresh blueberry octopie:

A big thank you to reader Jo McDonald, who submitted this picture. My job is waaaayyyyy easier when my readers do half the work....

A ???? of Octopodes

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A pride of lions. A school of fish. A parliament of owls. A murder of crows. An incompetence of politicians. It seems like every group has a special name. So what do you call a group of octopodes?

Turns out, that's a trick question. The octopus is a solitary creature, and will even resort to murder and cannibalism if another octopus enters its domain. Even mating is a dicey situation (and ain't that often the truth in general?)  At most you might see "a couple of octopodes" or "a pair of octopodes". which will very likely coincide with "a flurry of tentacles" and/or "a cloud of ink". 

So it turns out that it is not just an oversight that there is no group name for octopodes; as they say in my day job, "it's a feature, not a bug."