When naturalist William Bartram was exploring Florida in the 1770s, he described a bird that he called the painted vulture.  Originally believed to be a misidentification of the crested caracara, more recent studies of Bartram’s notes have realised that the description of the painted vulture is identical to that of the king vulture, with the exception of the colour of the tail feathers.  It is now theorised that perhaps the king vulture’s range once expanded up into Florida, with the population being killed off by a cold snap, or that Bartram’s painted vulture was a subspecies of the king vulture that has since gone extinct.

anonymous asked:

So you've shown us what a couple of your Rogues look like with descriptions and sketches and real life photo examples, but one person I can never properly visualize is your Waylon Jones. There's been so many versions of him over the years that my brain can't seem to pick one. Could you describe (or possibly sketch) your version of him for us? Like, does he look human with a skin condition, or more reptilian with a tail and snout? Does he tend to be shirtless or does he hide under a coat and hat?

Waylon Jones was born with green scaled skin, crocodile eyes, and a semi-functioning tail (albeit only approximately 8″ long [full-grown]). He is 6′6″, and 330lbs.

During his time with Bartram & Topps (Travelling Circus) as “The Crocodile Man”, Waylon was injured quite a few times through various stunts - most noticeably losing the end of his nose to a crocodile when a previously rehearsed fight went bad.

The circus was going to foot the bill for reconstructive surgery, but Waylon liked the look. He never felt truly human, but hadn’t considered going “Full Croc” until now. With some help from his fellow performers in the circus, Waylon became obsessed with Body Modification. He had his ears removed (which admittedly was only one ear – a particularly rough youth has cost him the other already) and removed the remnants of his nose, giving a snouted look to his face.

He had his tongue bifurcated next, and then proceeded to get various facial piercings (two on each brow, one chin (labret), and a hoop through what remains of each tragus). His teeth were filed into more distinct points (despite already having been more fang-like than regular teeth).

As for wardrobe, Waylon wears a pair of khaki cargo pants (that are basically tatters beyond the side leg pockets), and a Gotham Goliaths (Basketball) hoodie with the sleeves torn off. His hands and feet are wrapped with linen (the wraps help keep Waylon’s skin lotioned as the scales are very dry and uncomfortable around his fingers and toes. If left untreated, it becomes very uncomfortable to move his various digits, often resulting in bleeding). He always has clothes with pockets, as he leads a very nomadic lifestyle.

Being less than subtle, Waylon had informed Edward Nygma of how much he loved Ed’s overcoat. Knowing he would never ASK for one, Edward had a replica coat made for Waylon to wear when he walks around town (with the proportions altered to fit, obviously). It’s not in the best of shape anymore (given Waylon’s living conditions), but he will never give it away.

I hope that gives a better idea on Waylon’s appearance. I’ve probably missed some points, and will update as things pop into my bizarre little mind.

“Hux rolls against him when he can’t wait any longer, pressing his body to Kylo’s and slipping his arm around Kylo’s chest. He moves Kylo’s hair so that it won’t be in his face, sighs against the back of Kylo’s neck, tucks his knees in behind Kylo’s legs.

Explanation for this behavior: Hux wants warmth, comfort, company in his misery. He’s a greedy, spoiled, needful person who will drag Kylo down to the depths of his own vulnerability if Kylo lets him.

Correction, undeniable: Hux isn’t trying to get comfort, he’s trying to give it.

Observation: That’s laughable.”


Yesterday a gathering of farmers did seed work during the full moon at Mill Hollow. We spent a day in reflection, prayer, learning, and ancestral work with seeds. People with differing levels of familiarity with keeping seeds were joined by the connective tissues of our common seed wisdom and seed heritage. For example, we all keep some version of Vigna unguiculata (black-eyed pea, long bean, fagiolina…). We discussed the honoring and documenting of seed stories, and learned nurturing methods to preserve our traditional food through producing high quality seed crops. Our task is to bring this work back to our communities in deeper ways. Thanks for the beautiful day, VietLead, Urban Tree Connection, Novick Family Urban Farm, Mill Creek Farm, and Community Farm and Food Resource Center at Bartram’s Garden. #seedkeeping #seedheritage #seedfuture
Shoegaze, dreampop & psych playlist #157*
More essential cuts of shoegaze, dreampop, spacerock, blisspop, lo-fi,krautrock, electronica, psychedelia and more. Follow me on Tumblr Twitter :

Playlist #157 inc: @visitingdiplmts @mbsounds @champanesband #loskowalski & #thesunseviltwin #shoegaze #dreampop


To discover the new frontier of urban farming, you’ll have to look up — and look sharp — for hanging fruit.

Urban orchards are dropping everything from apples to persimmons to avocados on Seattle, Bloomington, Ind., Boston, Toronto, San Francisco, Los Angeles and other North American cities. Groups like the Portland Fruit Tree Project advocate for public access to existing fruit trees so that people can glean crops that would otherwise go uneaten — an idea some are calling radical. Other groups are more interested in planting new groves of fruit trees on previously fallow city land.

Fruit trees produce food, but also provide shade, keep greenhouse gases out of the atmosphere, improve water quality and may even deter crime. Advocates say they also have a longer lasting impact on communities than vegetable beds.

Urban Food Forests Make Fruit Free For The Picking

Photo credit: Courtesy of Philadelphia Orchard Project

Colonial American Birthdays!

It’s Alexander Hamilton’s birthday today, so I thought I would look into the ways in which Americans celebrated birthdays in the late 18th-century. I found very, very little. So, I dug through everyone’s favorite website, Founders Online, and found any mention of birthdays I could. Royal birthdays were traditionally marked by large balls and other public celebrations, and after the colonies declared independence they began to celebrate George Washington’s birthday this way instead. Since Washington’s birthdays were outliers, I ignored them.

In general, it seems that personal birthdays were widely celebrated. Benjamin Franklin’s wife, Deborah, wrote him in 1765 to say that their friend Mr. Bartram (presumably John Bartram) “asked us to celebrate his Birthday.” Celebrating a birthday in someone’s absence seems to have been relatively common: Eleanor Morris, Mary Hewson, and Sarah Bache all wrote Franklin to let him know that they would be keeping his birthday, in 1768, 1779, and 1783 respectively. Morris says that she and her cousins celebrated his birthday (“that Happy Day”) by having plum pudding with their dinner and drinking tea to his health. Bache, his daughter, claims to keep Franklin’s birthday “in the most festive Manner in my power,” and invited sixty children over for a dance.

Birthdays for children were certainly celebrated. Franklin’s illegitimate grandson, William Temple Franklin, wrote to his cousin to say that he would be visiting a friend to celebrate their son’s first birthday. In 1771, Benjamin Franklin wrote to Deborah to say that he celebrated his grandson’s birthday with friends: "At Dinner, among other nice Things, we had a Floating Island, which they always particularly have on the Birth Days of any of their own Six Children.” A floating island is a French dessert, basically meringue floating on crème anglaise. Apparently, fancy desserts were considered an acceptable way to celebrate a birthday.

I found two instances of personalized poems written in honor of someone’s birthday. In 1767, Benjamin Franklin wrote a poem for Mary Stevenson, the daughter of his London landlady, which included the line “You’d have the Custom broke, you say, That marks with festive Mirth your natal Day,” which also implies that birthday parties were considered customary. On February 21st, 1793, George and Martha Washington sent a birthday greeting to Elizabeth Willing Powel and expressed their regrets that they were unable to attend her 50th birthday party that evening. They also enclosed a personalized birthday poem. In 1814, John Quincy Adams’s seven-year-old son wrote from Saint Petersburg to say that he had performed in a French play at the birthday dinner of a Mr. Krehmer (presumably Sebastian Krehmer, a banker). The dinner ended with a dance.

John Adams, in true New England fashion, marked his 37th birthday by writing this in his journal: “Thirty Seven Years, more than half the Life of Man, are run out.—What an Atom, an Animalcule I am!—The Remainder of my Days I shall rather decline, in Sense, Spirit, and Activity. My Season for acquiring Knowledge is past.” Slightly more optimistically, he writes, “And Yet I have my own and my Childrens Fortunes to make. My boyish Habits, and Airs are not yet worn off.” Two years later, he noted his 39th birthday but wrote nothing else about it and seemed to have spent most of the day traveling.

If we sometimes caricature Ben Franklin as our most bacchanalian founder, and John Adams as a bit of a Puritan stick-in-the-mud, I feel like these examples provide a good range. There are many other examples of letters that simply begin with a birthday greeting, or dates that note that it’s the author’s birthday. Most people seem to have kept track of their birthdays and mentioned them to friends and family, and quite a few seem to have celebrated with dinners, poems, special desserts, and even dances. 

So, what about our birthday boy, Alexander Hamilton? Well, he never mentions his birthday in any of his surviving letters. On January 10th, 1772, the day before his 17th or 15th birthday, he wrote to his employer, Nicholas Cruger, to let him know how business was going. At the end, he thanked Cruger “for the Apples you were so kind as to send me,” but there is no other personal information. It seems extremely unlikely that these apples were some sort of birthday gift, since the last letter he’d had from Cruger was from December 20th, 1771. The only notable thing about Hamilton’s birthday seems to be that he didn’t take a break. There are plenty of work-related letters sent on the 10th, 11th, and 12th of January throughout his life. On his 34th or 36th birthday, he wrote a particularly lengthy one to Thomas Jefferson, entirely concerned with politics. So if you were curious about how Hamilton celebrated his birthday…he might not have. 

Happy 259th/261st birthday, Hammy!