slow and steady

Slow and steady about sums up a lot of the work I do. Well, slow at least. Slow like a turtle.

Here’s a list of turtles for this week’s Themed Things Thursday. We’ve got turtles and tortoises, and possibly even some terrapins (though I haven’t identified any as such).

A Stack of Turtle Things

  • Yertle the Turtle, Dr. Seuss. As Lisa Simpson says, “this is quite possibly the best book ever written on the subject of turtle stacking.”
  • What Newt Could do for Turtle, Jonathan London.
    A picturebook of friendship between 2 friends, a newt and a turtle, who live in the swamp.
  • yertle.jpg       what_newt_could_do.jpg

  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Comic book characters, of the mutant turtle persuasion. And presumably adolescent. And possibly also Ninjas. Have branched out to TV, movies, and of course, merchandising.
  • bert2.png

  • Bert the Turtle, from the “Duck and Cover” film on preparing for a nuclear attack. (You can watch it on YouTube, and learn how even covering yourself with a newspaper can help protect you from a nuclear blast.)
    Bert has a catchy song:

    there was a turtle by the name of Bert
    and Bert the turtle was very alert
    when danger threatened him he never got hurt
    he knew just what to do
    he’d duck…and cover
    duck…and cover…

  • the_tortoise_and_the_hare_-_project_gutenberg_etext_19994.jpg

  • The Tortoise and the Hare: A fable attributed to Aesop. A fast hare has a race with a tortoise, but loses since he figures he has time for a nap. The tortoise wins since he kept moving. “Slow and steady wins the race.”
  • The Great A’Tuin: The Giant Star turtle in the Discworld series by Terry Pratchett. The world (which is disc-shaped) is supported by 4 elephants standing on the back of this giant turtle. This is most likely based on…
  • Chukwa, from Hindu mythology. A giant turtle who supports the earth, sometimes also with an elephant on its back. (The turtle may also be standing on more turtles, such that there are turtles all the way down.)
  • chocolate turtle: Not really a turtle at all. Or at least not the reptilian kind. A confection of nuts (usually pecans) covered in caramel and chocolate, typically forming a dome shape that resembles a turtle.
  • turtle trap: When I was little, maybe 4 or 5 years old, I thought that people had called this one Sausalito shopping center a turtle trap. I’m not sure at what point it became clear to me that people had called it a “tourist trap.” Not being clear on the concept of tourists, I assume I’d interpreted the word I’d heard as “tortoise,” then remembered it as “turtle.” To this day, I still think of that place as the Turtle Trap. Especially since I can’t remember its “real” name.
  • “Turtles are quiet.” A page from Leslie Patricelli‘s most excellent book Quiet LOUD. The book is full of quiet things, and loud things. But somehow this is the one we remember when trying to encourage Phoebe to be quiet: “Quiet like a turtle.”
  • “I like turtles” I just saw this in a post on riddlebiddle, but it has apparently been making the rounds for months. And kicked off a lot of video responses. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, have a look at this video on YouTube (It’s only about 17 seconds long.)

A turtle at our local zoo. Or a tortoise at our local zoo, if you want to be particular. Or if you want to be British about it.