Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Lesson One: What's in a Name?

Gigantopithecus californiensis von beringoni

What’s in a Name? The simple answer is truth. For clear identification a species must be named truthfully: one does not call his dog, “Windy,” nor does he address his wife as, “Feckless,” even if some of those qualities are applicable. Science demands that beasts be named for their most prominent features and/or the place in which they reside.


What I’m getting at is the current nomenclature (that is to say, naming convention) for the mysterious man-beast inhabiting the wilds of North America. “Bigfoot?” That’s the best we can do? Surely a seven foot-tall gorilla should be distinguished by something other than the size of its feet! I wear a British shoe size 14 (measured in barleycorn) and I have never once been cited for the impressive size of my feet.


And the name “Sasquatch” is no better. Contrary to popular presumption, the name Sasquatch is an anglicized derivative of the word "sésquac" which means: "bringer of liquor" in a Salish Native American language. Could this translation actually have the intent backwards, that liquor (or “good burning water” as it is known to the Salish) is the bringer of Sasquatch, rather than vice versa?  This theory is outlined in my published work titled, “North American ape sightings: is alcohol a contributing factor?”

It may surprise you to know that I have had a close encounter with the creature incorrectly referred to as "Sasquatch" (a story for another time) and therefore feel  entitled to give the beast its proper designation: "The North American Wood Ape" or Gigantopithecus californiensis von beringoni.  This designation is official forthwith and calling the beast by any other name will be considered, by the scientific community, as plebeian.

Thank you for enjoying my blog.  It's been my distinct pleasure to have educated you on these matters.



AKA "The Naturalist"


  1. Ahh, Dr. Beringe, at last, a Woodman blog Worthy of the scientific community's notice. I welcome you, sir, and wait with bated breath for your next installment. Sincerley, Professor Seanold Penfro Damascus.

  2. Dr. Beringe I have started a religion in your name. The Church of Natrualismology and Science of the Western World. Naturalist please save us from these other so called experts. We are currently erecting a shrine with Autumn at your side.

  3. Gentlemen you are too kind. I appreciate you patronage as much as you look forward to my tutelage.

  4. Magnipod? Hirsuiti?
    I'm just thinking about names, dear. I love your blog. So very glad to have a wise voice in the world of all things natural. By the way, I love the pith helmet--it's one of my favorite accessories.

  5. My heart rejoices at the sight of your avatar, Autumnforest!

    You must forgive me for my absence and believe me when I say I was kidnapped by Wood Apes whilst preparing to serenade you by way of Sousaphone, glittering rings and bended knee.

    Magnipod? Hirsuiti? You out repartee us all, good woman! Brilliant!

  6. Dear Naturalist:

    Please let me know when you publish your paper, "North American ape sightings: is alcohol a contributing factor?"

    Or have you already placed it online? If so, I couldn't find it.

    I look forward to critiquing it.

    In the meantime, I feel that this blog will be read by many young people, and incorporated into future term papers, as reality. Your etymological explanation for Sasquatch, I predict, will be taken as the truth within the year.

    Loren Coleman, Director
    International Cryptozoology Museum

  7. Mr. Coleman, what an honor, sir!

    My paper? Yes, it is online somewhere... balls! I've gone and misplaced the URL. I feel positively gormless right now. I will let you know when it turns up.

    Regardless, thank you for stopping by! It has been my indulgence to you inform you.

  8. You are forgiven, Nat. I will have to don the costume from the movie "The Mummy" for the forest wedding. I do so love that archaeologist-1930s-Safari wear. Good luck getting the Big Fella to officiate.

  9. Lol......I'm seriously thinking of turning the adventures of the Naturalist into a screenplay. Staring Matt Smith (Dr.Who) as Dr. Von Beringe and Emma Stone as Autumn and of course we will audition Mickey Rourke, Ron Pearlman, and Robbie Coltrane (Hagrid of Harry Potter) for the Squatch. I thought of BoBo but he is a little nuts this season.

  10. Greetings from “across the pond”, as we are wont to say in Old Blighty! Although my specialty is rocket science, I've long held interest in more arcane fields such as extraterrestrial biology and cryptozoological phenomena. With regard to the present theme I am currently developing theories on the lack of physical evidence to date (scat, etc.) for these cryptic North American anthropoids. Among my conclusions is that these taxa either practise coprophagy, or, perhaps more likely, given that neither the so-called Patterson footage nor other eyewitness accounts describe the hairless posterior exhibited in the known monkeys and apes, that the fecal boluses are not deposited in the normal manner but remain cohered to the dorsal hairs of the rump. This latter interpretation would also explain the foul odor often described in first-person encounters (i.e. the “Skunk-Apes” of the southeastern U.S.) In any event, I would welcome your peer review of my forthcoming paper given the perspicacity you have ably demonstrated on this topic.

  11. Quatermass, you old fool! It's me, Ron Ron Von Beringe, from uni - it's been ages. I'm weeping with joy at the thought of reviewing your discoveries on primate feces!

    Speaking of which, do you remember Stinky from school? I regret to you inform you he was recently killed by a bayonet to the back. Unlucky fellow, that one.

  12. Ronnie! Smashing to chat with you again. Indeed I remember Stinky, poor chap. It was he who claimed to have spotted the ghost of Lady Clarinda Musgrave with her head on backwards in the west wing of Hurlstone Towers, remember? I recall the case so confounded the investigators the lead detective among them retired to Sussex to keep bees.

  13. Knowing the cubic capacity of that investigator's skull he must be one smashing bee keeper. A man with so large a brain must have something in it!

  14. i called bigfoot a moon cricket until someone told me it was a racial insult.