Saturday, October 6, 2007

The Hazards Of Blogging: Why People Read You

image credit: Canada Phoenix Education Group

This is a photo of the Turtle's Head Islet in the Taihu Lake, near the Yangtze River. Trust me, it's just as obscure a reference as the one that inspired this article.

Some folks show up here for the darnedest reasons. For instance, today several people, from all over the world, suddenly landed here because they were searching for the phrase "wino spittle". To say the least, this struck me as an odd coincidence. Why they showed up here, of course, is obvious. My Google ranking as one of the leading authorities on both "slobber" and "spittle" is a natural draw. Heck, I've even been consulted by a medical school or two on that subject. What concerned me was why so many folks from so many different countries were interested in such an odd phrase. After spending some time on The Google, I've resolved this mystery to my own satisfaction. In short, blame it on Dilbert:

I thought I could get away with “turtle head” because the naughty meaning isn’t universally known and an actual turtle’s head would fit Dilbert’s analogy just as well. So there was a degree of deniability built in. And turtles are cute, damn it!

The Day I Will Be Slightly Amusing

It shames me to admit, but I didn't know what a turtle head was, either. Fortunately, the Urban Dictionary is there for those of us who stopped being cool a decade or two ago. Adams goes on to explain:

So I changed “turtle head” to “wino’s spittle” and you’ll see that on Saturday. Sigh. It could have been something special.

The Day I Will Be Slightly Amusing

Sucks, doesn't it? Of course, I can write pretty much whatever I want, within the bounds of copyright and common sense. I still have to work for a living, though. Freedom, as Kris Kristofferson once observed, means you have nothing to lose.

It turns out that there's no definition for "wino spittle" yet, so I think we'll have to assume that's just a metaphor.

I'm also sorry that I can't show you the cartoon in question, but thanks to our draconian intellectual property laws, I'd be sued for so much money I'd need two or three lifetimes to pay it off.

So, far all of you visitors today who came here looking for an explanation of these mysteries, click the links and move on. We only discuss serious subjects here.

UPDATE (Oct. 7): Thanks to an anonymous commenter, corrected the explanation of what the photo represented.


Anonymous said...

The reference to Yangtze River is wrong. The image name said it: the Taihu Lake, which is south of (though not far from) the Yangtze River.

The Google map is here.

Cujo359 said...

Yes, that's what the link I referred to says, also, now that I read it more carefully. Thanks for the correction.