Friday, February 22, 2019

The Tall and the Short of It Weekly Link Round-Up

A couple of weeks ago, a dear friend of mine posted a short video on his Facebook page that made me smile. The video was of an irresistible Basset Hound puppy with a nice round belly who, try as he might, was just not tall enough to jump up onto the couch. The comments on the video immediately began the age-old Tall vs. Short discussion. My friend, who is six feet four, replied to someone that he didn't think he'd ever been that short, and people laughed. I commented, "The last time I was that short, I was still in the womb." Afterward, I got to thinking about it. You know what? I was right!

My first day home from the hospital.
The photo shows me on my first day home from the hospital. Now that's a nice wide chair that was in my grandparents' living room. Look at me-- there's not much chair seat left width-wise, is there? Now... most chair seats are about eighteen inches above the floor. Eighteen inches high, and that little puppy couldn't handle it. If I'd had a bit more strength in my arms and legs, I might've managed to climb up (or at least look over the edge of the seat). Why? Because I was twenty-five inches long when I was born. I spelled it out so you wouldn't think it was a typo. So I was right-- the last time I was really "little," I was still in the womb!

But I'm not now, and from the sounds of it, I'd better get myself out to the corral. Head 'em up! Mooooooooooove 'em out!

►Books & Other Interesting Tidbits◄
  • Is this the final chapter for the world's iconic bookshops?
  • Neuroscientists have converted brain waves into verbal speech. 
  • Welcome to the bold and blocky Instagram Era of book covers.
  • If you're a Midsomer Murders fan like me, have you seen this website devoted to the program? Complete episode lists, filming locations, etc. I love it. 
  • Elly Griffiths has signed with Hachette for a children's crime series. Lucky kids!
  • From crime reality to crime fiction: the strange case of the Anne Perry film.
  • The trouble with autism in novels.
  • Take a look around poet Morgan Parker's LA apartment. That art! Those books! That sectional!

►Channeling My Inner Indiana Jones◄
  • The amazing 15th-century "Coventry Doom" remained hidden in plain sight for centuries.
  • A drone has captured thousands of years of archaeology on remote Scottish islands.

►Channeling My Inner Elly Mae Clampett◄
  • Rare blue-eyed coyotes have been spotted in California.
  • This photographer took pictures of squirrels every day for six years, and here are the incredible results.
  • How did Chicago's birds weather the Polar Vortex?
  • Pyro, the tabby cat who kept superstitious young pilots company on World War II bombing missions, was honored for bravery in 2011. 
  • Should the Himalayan wolf be classified as a new species?
  • Flying squirrels glow fluorescent pink under ultraviolet light. (You never know when this bit of trivia will come in handy...)
  • Pandas weren't always picky eaters.
  • In case you're wondering, here's why birds don't freeze in the winter.

►Fascinating Folk◄
  • Clayton Kuhles of Prescott, Arizona, has found twenty-two plane crashes missing since World War II.
  • Dr. Leila Denmark lived to be 114, and she practiced medicine for three-quarters of a century. 
  • An interesting article on Dan Mallory AKA A.J. Finn.
  • A new exhibition highlights the story of Mansa Musa, emperor of Mali, the richest man who ever lived.
  • Nedra Tyre wrote venomous mysteries where kindness is the greatest weapon of all.

►The Happy Wanderer◄
  • The birthplace of Scrabble.
  • A brief history of crime and mystery in the world's Chinatowns.
  • A partial tunnel blasted into a steep ridge is all that remains of a failed railway across Arizona.
  • A stranded woman lived alone on San Nicolas Island for eighteen years, inspiring the great children's novel Island of the Blue Dolphins.
  • There's a planet exactly where Star Trek said Vulcan should be. 
  • How the Grand Canyon transformed from a "valueless" place to a national park.

►I ♥ Lists & Quizzes◄

That's all for this week! Don't forget to stop by next Friday when I'll be sharing a freshly selected batch of links for your surfing pleasure.

Have a great weekend, and read something fabulous!


  1. What a cute picture of you, Cathy! And, yes, you were a long-un indeed. I live with a tall one (and his mother says he was very long as well at birth - not sure the exact amount of inches). He grew to over 6-3. Our son-in-law is 6'6" and he's the shortest brother of three. Ha! Our daughter was sure she would be tall because she was 5'3" when she was about 9 or 10. However, her hopes were shattered as she never grew another inch. So, she married the tall guy.

    OK, that article about the author of The Woman In The Window - crazy, right? We're discussing that book for our March mystery group meeting and I plan to also talk about book authors and how sometimes they are...unexpected. Ha!

    1. A.J. Finn/Dan Mallory? Crazy is right! I enjoyed THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW, but I doubt that I'll be reading any subsequent books of his.

  2. Oh, that's such an adorable 'photo, Cathy!! Thanks for sharing. As someone who's been short all her life, I have empathy for that basset pup... Now, off to check out that 'coventry doom.'

    1. The archaeological pickings have been slim lately. I hope you enjoy the Doom.

  3. The Vulcan link isn't working for me...or rather, my computer.

    There's something extremely narcissistic about the whole "I'm a victim" thing. I stopped reading her books some time ago. Couldn't put my finger on why, but they just stopped being attractive to me. Being the child of a narcissistic schizophrenic, and being related to a narcissist with a victim complex, though, maybe I'm just wary of it.

    1. All the Trekkies must've blown up that link because-- although it was working fine when I put the post together-- it's certainly not working now. I changed to a different link, so I hope that works for you!

      As for your "I'm a victim" comment, it took me a few seconds to figure out that you must be talking about Anne Perry. I stopped reading her books years ago, and the reason why isn't anything specific that I can put my finger on. Sometimes a series no longer calls out to me to read it, so I don't. Doesn't mean the series went off the rails. Just means that I've moved on. Your personal experiences may be telling you things that I can't pick up on as a reader.

  4. Dan Mallory? I don't get it, being a pathological liar. Yet The Woman in the Window was an excellent psychological thriller. I'll read his next book, but remembering his strange behavior.

    Good links. You were an adorable baby, but so big! I'm impressed. Was your mother or father tall?

    I'm ensconced in the excellent Scrublands. People had the nerve to ask me to do some editing today while I'm in Australia investigating murders. Some nerve!

    1. How dare they!

      I was 25" long and weighed 6 lb. 12 oz. My first nickname was "Snake Hips" because every time someone picked me up, my diaper would start sliding off. (Wish I'd been a chubby baby and was known as Snake Hips now...) My mother was 5'8" and my father was 6'2" when he died-- and he was still growing. (He was nineteen when he died.) I took a genetics class in college and learned a formula-- now long forgotten-- to deduce how tall you would have been if you'd been born the opposite sex. According to it, I would've been 6'5" instead of almost 5'10". Just think, I could've been a point guard in the WNBA if it existed back then...

  5. Omigosh, your birth story is exceptional.
    So sorry your father died at such a young age and missed your childhood.
    How does one find out this height thing? My dad was nearly 6' tall and my mother was 5'1". I was 5'3 1/2" until I shrank, aging, to 5'2". My sister is 5'6". I wonder about my height if I was born a different gender. How intriguing. Something I never thought about.

    Well, back to the scrublands of Australia. I'm constantly thirsty while reading this book.

    1. I'm looking forward to reading Scrublands, but it will have to wait (along with a couple of equally anticipated books) until I finish with some ARCs.

      I have no clue about that formula for height. I wish I'd written it down!


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