Tag Archives: false killer whales

Nick Clegg’s angry dolphin

Clegg has come up with a great Cleggism today: “ferocity with a purpose.”

I think it’s actually the first genuinely candid thing he’s said all week. What he’s basically saying is that all this talk about “savage” cuts and doom and gloom as been a calculated attempt to wrong foot the party and “drag” (his word according to the FT) the party over to his and Vince Cable’s position.

So when I complained earlier this week to the BBC that he was playing to the gallery and that conference felt like having a drunk pick a fight with you in a pub, it turns out that is exactly how Nick wanted me to feel.

All Terribly Clever of course, I’m surprised he is now bragging about it though. I have to admit that this blog indulges in a bit of ferocity with a purpose itself from time to time, which is how it has acquired the reputation it has.

So, in this spirit of glasnost, I am hereby changing the subtitle of this blog in deference to my leader.

UPDATE: As the FT article in question has vanished behind it’s firewall, I am including the relevant section here:

Mr Clegg is unrepentant. In a Financial Times interview, he says that describing looming cuts as “savage” was part of an attempt to “acclimatise the party to a changing environment”.

He would not relish cutting back the state. But he admits that he and Mr Cable have had to “drag” the party into a more realistic position that might include a freeze on overall public spending and shelving plans to abolish university tuition fees.

This has led to resentment and anger from a party whose commitment to public services is almost as profound as its love of deliberative (and cumbersome) policy- making. Mr Cable, in particular, has come under fire for failing to consult.

But Mr Clegg says Mr Cable has given the party economic credibility unimaginable in recent years. “There have been conferences in the past when we debated whether the royal family should smoke marijuana,” he jokes.

He rejects suggestions of tensions with a man whose popularity has transcended that of the party. “I feel like the captain of a cricket team who has the best batsman around.”

The Liberal Democrat leader closes his conference knowing that he badly needs to simplify his party’s message, and that beyond the cuts the party has a positive view of the future. He calls this “ferocity with a purpose”

New Killer Whales

One of the most frequent requests I get on this weblog is to write more on the fascinating subject of false killer whales. “When are you going to give us more insight into the marvellous world of cetaceans and taxonomy, James?” people ask, or simply “more false killer whale stories now, fat boy!”

The truth is, I don’t have much to report. However, I am delighted to learn in the latest Fortean Times that not one but two new species of (not false) Killer Whales may have been discovered: a seal eating kind and an Antarctic toothfish eating kind.

What’s more, it turns out there are two seperate species of Giant Panda. This may explain why they are so bad at getting it on in captivity. “Sorry love, you’re not my type. I prefer a rounder, more feline head myself in a woman.”

Looking at the Killer Whale and the Giant Panda on the same page, one wonders what would happen were they to ever meet. One animal has a black face and white “eyes” while the other has a white face and black eyes. Would they detest each other like the aliens in that classic Trek episode “Let That Be Your Last Battlefield“. God knows what would happen if they ever managed to breed…

Finally, the other thing of note to mention about this month’s FT (aside from the Cybermen article, but there’s been enough Doctor Who on cyberspace recently), is a picture of a giant bunny. It’s huge I tell you! Can’t find a picture on the interweb to show you, but I can confirm that it isn’t the one that just got married (this one is mentioned in the FT article but doesn’t look anything like as large).

UPDATE: It isn’t this one either. That isn’t a real bunny – it’s a muppet.

Why quotation marks should be banned, part 125

I get a steady trickle of hits to this site via search engines due to my interest in false killer whales. This page, advertising paintings of very much real killer whales, which was one higher than me on MSN is interesting:

If you “Love Whales” then you will definately want to start collecting Connie McClure’s unique Whale prints. The intense depth of color and powerful sense of movement in her Whale paintings – makes them sought after by “Whale Lovers” the world over.

Is it me or do those quotation marks make this seem a little, well, salacious (if you know what I mean)?


One of my favourite species is the false killer whale, for no other reason than for its name. Here are some false killer whale-related facts (all courtesy of Wikipedia):

  • False killer whales are not in fact whales, but cetaceans, and neither are killer whales. Both species kill dolphins, which seems a bit mean. Give a dog a bad name…
  • Not only are killer whales not whales, but the term “killer whale” is a mistranslation of the Spanish for “whale killer”.
  • False killer whales are no more “false” than killer whales, and the whole “false” thing is bit unfair really. They’re only called that because some donut mistook them for another species and the name stuck. Rumours that false killer whales tend to be excessively nice to people they can’t stand at parties remain unfounded.
  • False killer whales have elbows. Sort of.
  • A hybrid of a false killer whale and a bottlenose dolphin (presumably, the false killer whale creed is “what we don’t eat we shag”) is called a wolphin. This would be a ridiculous name even if it wasn’t for the fact that, as already stated, a false killer whale is not a whale!

Feel free to add your own fascinating false killer whale related facts in the comments below.