Monday, 31 August 2015

So Much for Experts.

I just had my YouTube session interrupted by what sounded like a dog barking quietly outside my office window. When I went to investigate, all I could find was my resident hedgehog with its nose pressed against a plant trough which stands by the door. And so I wondered…

I Googled Do hedgehogs bark?

The first return I read was from a hedgehog expert, and he assured me that hedgehogs never bark, they only purr. Next up was a Facebook entry in which a woman was expressing great delight that she’d just heard her pet hedgehog bark for the first time. And then it was onto a YouTube video which showed a hedgehog clearly barking.

Refer to title.


Madeline said...

I wish I lived in a place that had hedgehogs, barking or not.

JJ Beazley said...

They're very endearing creatures. They look up at you with their pointy noses, bright eyes and smiling mouths. I never knew people kept them as pets until I researched them a bit this year. The two babies I had around here a few weeks ago were extremely cute.

So, is that really you doing the Toast catalogue thing on the banks of the Hudson? The contrast range in that picture is amazing given the circumstances, but I only ever worked in film. Seems electronic cameras work wonders for contrast. And don't you look like your great grandmother? Only her 24 looks a bit older than yours. Sign of the times, maybe.

Madeline said...

Hedgehog babies - now I really am jealous. Can you get close or are they fairly skittish? I once knitted a hedgehog but I've never seen one in person.

Yes, that's me, photo taken by my phone if you can believe it. And yes, people have noted my resemblance to Marie (it's even stronger in my father). At 24 she was already married to her first husband; they divorced in 1915, which would have been fairly unusual. I'm looking forward to seeing the divorce papers, which by New York State law will be unsealed this year.

JJ Beazley said...

The babies were quite happy to toddle around as long as I was a few feet away. If I got closer they went into instinctive defence mode - roll into a spiny ball and hope it suffices. I could easily have picked them up if I'd felt so inclined, but I didn't want to frighten them. They disappeared after about a week but the mother is still here.

Aren't you worried you might discover some dreadful secret attaching to great grandmama? She had the look of a self-possessed woman! And on a vaguely related note, have you read AS Byatt's Possession? I gather it was written as a sort of antidote to The French Lieutenant's Woman, presenting a different view of the mores of the time. I imagine you might like the character of Christabel La Motte (and what a splendid name.)

Madeline said...

As far as dreadful secrets it would be hard to top that of Marie's second husband, Mr. K. His first wife left him (absconded with all of her things in a moving van while he was at work) and he had to have her declared legally dead.

I will have to look into Possession. I like The French Lieutenant's Woman, though it's been a while since I read it. More recently I saw the movie version with Meryl Streep, which I like a lot.

JJ Beazley said...

That's hilarious! So can you be declared dead in America if you make off with somebody's possessions? (Actually, something very similar happened to me, but it was complicated.'

The thing I disliked about the movie version was the ending. I could see the point, but I thought it took the gloss off the story.