After weeks of fun and procrastination, it is time to get back into gear. This change of pace has been underway for two days now and I can say with confidence that things look good. I'm getting up to date on my readings and am getting my hands dirty with French again.
On a different note, some animal trivia. In a recent telephone conversation, Kristen asked me what the difference is between a porcupine and a hedgehog. Being the rather nerdy, computer-loving friend that I am, I promised to look it up on the brilliant internet. Here are the results:
- Porcupines are rodents and belong to the Erethizontidae (new world porcupines) and Hysticidae (old world porcupine) families, while the hedgehog, on the other hand, is more closely related to shrews and moles, being part of the Erinaceinae family.
- There are no hedgehogs native to the Americas.
- There are no porcupines in the story of Peter Rabbit.
- Porcupines have quills
- Hedgehogs have spines
- Porcupines protect themselves mainly by hiding their face, keeping their belly to the ground, and raising their quills (a reaction similar to goose bumps in humans) and batting their tails, while Hedgehogs prefer to curl up in a ball and roll around.
- In their never-ending search for salt, porcupines chewed through some tubes on the bottom of our car while we were camping (maybe even more than once?). Hedgehogs never did anything of the sort.
- both porcupines and hedgehogs have an amusing appearance.
One more tidbit before I go: male porcupines urinate on the female to soften her quills before they mate.