Lamont and Dude Discuss the Big Five

“Well, they’ve ‘found out’ that dinosaurs evolved into birds, that Velociraptors were ‘short’ — that’s relative, isn’t it? — and we laid blue eggs.”

“Amusing isn’t it?”

“Yep. Listen to this, ‘…look at Velociraptors, which are among the most misunderstood “terror lizards” yet. A far cry from the large, scaly pack hunters depicted in Jurassic Park, real Velociraptors were solitary stalkers closer to the size of wolves that were covered in feathers. (sic) ‘”Given the chance, this predator likely wouldn’t have hunted humans, either,” Nat Geo’s Amy McKeever writes…’ Good grief. This guy doesn’t even know what he’s saying.”

“What are you reading from, Lamont?”

“Email from National Geographic. The guy’s pondering whether to eat turkey for Thanksgiving. He says he’s already given up eating ungulates now he’s having second thoughts about birds because — here’s the kicker — they’re descended from dinosaurs.”

“Humans. They’re so clueless and, well, clueless. You’d think from all the animal documentaries they have available, they would have figured out the Big Five.”

“Right. Do you remember when I got thrown of Oprah for explaining the Big Five?”

“Yeah. That was crazy. Everyone knows that’s how things work.”

“I was hurt, Dude. I’d even modernized it for the post-Dinosaur world, just for her show.

1) PROCREATE!!!! Fight for that female! If she acts like she doesn’t want to, ignore it. NO means YES.

2) EAT whenever you can. Vegetarians are food. So are dead carnivores.

3) Stuff dies. Sometimes you have to kill it first. If it’s already dead, you caught a break. Eat it.

4) WATCH OUT for eagles, bears, large cats and gulls.

See Dude? That’s the modern part. Good isn’t it?”


“I thought it was very PC. And, finally,

5) Keep yourself alive so you can procreate, kill things and eat them.”

“Almost poetry, Lamont. Hey, Lamont, we never fought over a mate, did we? I don’t recall that we ever did.”

“No. We didn’t have the chance. The meteor hit us probably just a few days before we would have seen some pretty piece of tail — I mean that literally because, you know, feathers — looked each other in the Velociraptor eye and gone for the jugular.”

“That’s probably why we’re friends now, Lamont. That meteor saved us.”

“You’re way too human, Dude.”


Thank you

Happy Thanksgiving readers of my blog, wherever you are. Yesterday I had a conversation with a friend about the year and what we have to be thankful for. She said she was having a hard time with gratitude, but found it — a real triumph in trying times. I thought about my situation and realized that part of me has “enjoyed” the pandemic. No, I don’t like it. I think the government’s handling of it has been inhuman and reprehensible and I’m sad for everyone who’s lost a loved one or a physical ability as a result of Covid-19. It’s horrific, particularly as so much death probably could have been prevented. But, in my tiny life, I’ve enjoyed this year.

There’s something to be said about the clarity of knowing that there is an enemy at the gates and that my job is to survive and to help those around me survive. That imperative is the most basic imperative there is. That right there eliminated a lot of things from my life, some of which I didn’t like in the first place (grocery shopping). Those things I had to “give up” that I do like I realized immediately could be adjusted (social distanced Covid tea parties with my friends, talks in the alley, walks in the golf course with the kids). Otherwise? The pandemic has limited our lives and made us more reliant on those in physical proximity, a life like that before cars, maybe. Anyway, for me it’s been mostly sweet and filled with love.

I’m also very grateful I have a certain income and no need (now) to go to a job. The pandemic threw that beautiful reality in relief early on. I thought of how it would be if I were still in California and teaching. I’d have lost my house by now. I think I’d be living on the street.

I don’t remember ever being more grateful for my life and my world than I am right now, and my life and my world includes all the people who read and comment on my blog. We have also deepened the threads of community over these months. Thank you. ❤


Lamont and Dude are characters I came up with a while ago. They have the unique ability to remember many of their past incarnations, which gives them a unique perspective on life, the universe and everything.

31 thoughts on “Lamont and Dude Discuss the Big Five

  1. Happy Thanksgiving to you, Martha. As you note, even as this year has been difficult, it is indeed good to recognize what is working and be grateful for that. And I am always appreciative of Lamont and Dude–a holiday appearance is an extra treat!

  2. Happy Thanksgiving, even though 2020 is full of surprises, there is always something to be thankful for. The small things matter too.

  3. Happy Thanksgiving Martha. We do have much to be grateful for. I’ve often thought how different (and harder) it would have been if I’d been younger, working and still had kids at home during this pandemic.
    Fun to see L&D (getting thrown out of Oprah? didn’t think that was possible)! 🙂

    • Lamont has been thrown off Oprah more than once. It’s incredible how the truth can get on people’s nerves. It was only about a week into the pandemic that I realized that, as an adjunct teacher, I would have been out on my ass with no income or drastically reduced income. Thank goodness (here comes some BIG irony) the government came through so powerfully to help people.

  4. Either Lamont and Dude are very human or I am very dinosaur. I’m cute, snappy and snacky so maybe I was a velociraptor in an earlier life.
    Happy Thanksgiving to you, Martha. I hope you, Bear and Teddy got to eat some poultry. 🙂 PS. I enjoyed your post on China too. I love that story about your bible.

  5. Always a good post with Lamont and Dude in attendance! They sound like real bros in this post!! The prime directives still exist and sadly we have not evolved so far that they no longer impact our lives… I am likewise glad that I have financial security. I think I made more money during the pandemic than I would have otherwise since there were no distractions for the investigators (no classes for most since only one needed to provide the online lecture) so more research was done… Anyway I hope your Thanksgiving day was lovely!

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