Thursday, October 8, 2015

The Poor Mouse Who Sought Mersis

"The Poor Mouse Who Sought Mersis" A fable by T.K. Wade

A poor mouse pleaded to the goddess Mersis, “Please bestow upon me some gold that I may give unto others in need!” So touched by the mouse’s selflessness, Mersis did bestow upon him the gold he requested. The mouse then did indeed hand out the money to those in need; however, once his task was done, he bragged about his deed to increase his status among his rodent brethren. Mersis, presently disgusted by the mouse, took what little he had left and bestowed upon him a disease, which would quickly have him banished from civilization.

-Author Notes-

This story is set in what I call my "Tooth and Tail" universe where all the characters are rodents. This story references one of the goddesses known as Mersis. This is the goddess of mercy. I am unsure if she would actually do what she does in the second half of the fable; however, the story is intended to make a point which should be clear to the reader. Charity should always be given by one with a sincere heart; otherwise, it means nothing at all.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

"A New Friend" has been published on Smashwords!

Great news! "Adventures in Cottontail Pines: A New Friend" is available FREE OF CHARGE on Smashwords! It can be downloaded in multiple formats at:

Here is a synopsis:

Welcome to the magical town of Cottontail Pines, where animals talk, and there is always a friend around the corner. In this story entitled “A New Friend,” a new bunny named Koy moves into town, and as usual, Flopsy wants to be the welcome-wagon. She soon finds out that this Koy is very shy and cannot seem to enjoy himself around other animals. Never daunted, she tries her best to show him just how wonderful Cottontail Pines really is. Can Flopsy do it? Find out what happens in this cute new story by T.K. Wade!

Mustelidae Spotlight: Sea Otter

You know, my research into sea otters may have proved them to be the most popular. They are not my personal favorite, but I was rather astounded how much more material there was on them than with all the "otter" guys. It may be because they are endangered, and when cute and endangered come together, there tends to be a fair bit of outcry about it. That said, there really are a lot of interesting things to talk about concerning this mustie. So, let us begin!

The sea otter can only be found in the North Pacific Ocean on both the eastern and northern coasts. They average about 3 and a half feet in length. It may just be my opinion, but I always found their faces particularly odd to look at. It almost looks like they aren't even real--something like a plush animal that was just sewn together that way.

These musties are "otterly" unusual. For one, they are very competent with the use of their front paws. They can pick things up and hold them like hands. They can use tools like rocks to open up clams. It's actually rather odd to see them do it. All the other otters I have seen struggle in this area. Another really odd thing about these guys is that they have pouches like kangaroos. They are actually up on their chests which makes them seem like little pockets to put things in. Unlike kangaroos who put there babies in them, these pockets are actually there to put whatever the heck they want into them. Let's jabber about the pockets for a bit.

Sea otters spend a lot of time underwater catching fish, clams, and other sea life. If you think about it, the entire ocean is like a big buffet where you can just choose what you want. But who wants to come up to eat for each individual bit of food. That's one of the uses for those pockets. After they catch the food, they store it in the pocket and keep going until their pockets are full. It's "otter" brilliance! It is fun watching them float on their backs while they eat right off of their chest. How cute! These pockets also store a little rock in them that they use to break open the clams they find. Sea otters are like living, mobile tool chests! How awesome is that?!

I found their social habits both cute and disturbing. Like the North American river otters, they love intermingling with one another--males and females alike. The males are known for having multiple mates. The disturbing part has to do with the actual act of breeding. Without going into too much detail, it is shockingly a rough affair. I am serious. The males are quite horrible to their women. Often times, the females come out of it with bite marks all over. Some of the wounds never heal. Even worse, the male tends to shove her head under water during the act. It reminds me how dangerous libertine lifestyles can actually get.

I do not know of any sea otters in fiction, but I am willing to bet that they do exist. These musties are very popular. I think the most striking thing about these guys were their social behavior--especially when it came to mating. I imagine the men to be quite chauvinistic when it comes to their feminine counterparts. They are fishermen of course and likely were the first ones to invent a modern style of fishing reel. In this respect, they would also be mechanically inclined. Despite their smiles and friendly outward appearance, I see them having a dark side that comes out if they are pushed. What do you think? It would sure fit the Asian lore, wouldn't it?

It is clear that the sea otter proves to be one of the most fascinating of his brethren. The ocean is his smorgasbord, and he swims about taking what he wants. Like most of his type, he is out there to have fun and enjoy himself. That is why we love otters after all. Stay tuned for yet another otter next week. It's gonna be a big one. I "otter" know!

Thank you for reading this blog. If you enjoyed it, you can comment below, or you can email me at Splish!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

The Coyote and his Meal

"The Coyote and his Meal" A fable by T.K. Wade

A hungry coyote, having trapped a man in his den, was soon to slay and feast upon his flesh, however the man protested, “I forbid you to feast upon me. As a man, I possess a name, and those who are named are dominant over those who do not.” With a chuckle, the coyote replied, “Name yourself what you will, for by tomorrow, you will fill my belly.”

Pride is no saving grace.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Mustelidae Spotlight: North American River Otter

How about those European otters? Remember how grumpy and unsociable they were? Well, you won't find any of that stuff in THIS blog! Yes, the North American river otter is 42 inches of fun and fancy free! That's right! This guy is way more playful that that "otter" one!

These guys really are really cute. As the name suggests, you find them entirely in North America. This includes Canada and the American state of Alaska. In the U.S., they are located closer to the east and west coasts. The middle is almost entire left out; however, a lot of American soil is still covered. We have enough of these guys to make us smile anyways. Canada really does win the award though. Up there, these cuties are everywhere sliding across ice like it's the best thing in the world!

The North American river otter--like most otters--love seafood. They hunt by sneaking and ambush tactics--much like felines. If the ambush fails, they are perfectly capable of giving chase. With as much energy as they have, often the prey will run out of breath and get caught. Sometimes several others will get in on the chase as well, and then it becomes a matter of sport. These otters are carnivores, and beyond seafood, they also eat any small animals they can catch and kill. They are also known to eat some species of birds, and they don't mind this even one bit.

Most musties are not known for good social interactions. The European otter was a good example of how we usually find these guys behaving. With the North American river otter, we find something that is "otterly" different! These musties tend to love each other's company and often with no exception. Even when it's mating season, it does not mean two males cannot enjoy each other's company. Perhaps, a contest of some sort would be in order. I wouldn't throw such a sport past them since they always seem to be playing at some game or another. The spirit of family and good will seems to always be present with these guys, and it is marvelously fun to watch them in action.

On the latter information, you must understand how positively rare it is for males to enjoy each other's company when it comes to female competition. The most common trend is for things to get violent. It feels like to me that these particular otters just like to have fun, play, and live a relaxing and lazy lifestyle. In a way, that is still very animalistic. I have a cat who spends her entire day eating and sleeping, and that is perfectly fine for her. The difference here is that otters enjoy a good play, and between the two, I would rather watch the otters. Few other things bring me such joy as seeing these little hams put on a performance for my viewing pleasure.

So, I think you get what I mean. These guys are a free spirit that cannot be suppressed in any way. They are the hippy, surfer dudes of the animal kingdom. In fiction, I see them in a similar light. The fact that they are river-bound, makes me think of a more tribal setup. I see them walking about their little village wearing trinkets around their necks and leafy loincloths between their legs. Everyone knows and likes everyone, and they spend their days playing in a river paradise.

I wrote an unpublished story called "Fairyland Detectives" with something similar. There was a little otter village called Conceitia where otters all played and would try to get visitors to watch them. They were very vain, and did not really care for visitors but for how much they could show off for them. I think that these otters very likely were of the North American variety--not the "otter" kinds.

What is not to love about this wonderful musty. They produce almost an escapist ideal. I have many times wished I could just join in on the fun and swim about in an otter paradise. That's why I love fiction. In a way, it allows me to do just that. Stay tuned for more otters in next week's blog, or else I'll be "otterly" devastated!

Thank you for reading this blog. If you enjoyed it, you can comment below, or you can email me at Splish!

Thursday, September 24, 2015

The Child and the Hyena

"The Child and the Hyena" A fable by T.K. Wade

A curious child separated from his father when he heard the cackling of a hyena in the distance, and when he did approach the beast, he asked, “Are you laughing at me?” To which the hyena replied with a sinister glare, “I do not laugh at you but for the folly of a father who does nothing to keep watch over his own child in such a dangerous place.”

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Mustelidae Spotlight: European Otter

I hope--given the name of this species of otter--I don't need to explain where to find these guys on the planet. Well, maybe I do, because you would be surprised how the names of some species can be misleading. My friend Shawn O'Toole and I know this all too well. In this case, it is the truth, and you will never find a European otter in the Americas. But isn't that a shame? Don't we deserve love too? Can't there be an otter for everyone? I digress.

I read as many "ottercles" about these musties as I could. I was actually surprised to find a distinct lack of playfulness in these guys. That is not to say that they are not social, but they seem fairly persnickety about their territory. The territory thing is interesting though. The males don't really like each other. They are not allowed in each other territory without being driven out; however, male and female territories are allowed to overlap. Why not?! Seems like a good idea to me!

The European otter has a very interesting form. Their bodies are about 37 inches long, and appear to have very stout bodily structure. Their faces are broad and a little bit menacing looking. They also have a really long tail as otters go--sometimes up to 18 inches long. So clearly, the European otter is a big, big guy.

European otters actually prefer freshwater. but they can swim about in saltwater as well. Besides, there are lots of yummy fish in the sea. Sometimes, the ocean can be far nicer than some "otter" place. The only problem is that all that salt can really mess up their fur. Ultimately, they need to go find a freshwater source to clean themselves off. One more tidbit about their swimming habits is that the European otter is born with a condition called osteosclerosis, which basically means they have have an elevated bone density. This leads to reductions in buoyancy while swimming. It gives the phrase "sink or swim" new meaning, doesn't it?

I really do like how these guys look, but what the heck is with their eyes. They look like they are just so irritable. What made these cute guys so cynical? Must be all those Japanese stories about how they murder people. A lot of the playfulness that I have come to know in otters seems to be a little lost here.

I haven't seen any fiction for this specific breed, Their may be some to be found in Europe, but they haven't come across my desk. I do think that their personalities would be more sardonic since they do seem a bit grumpier than the "otter" ones. When I looked at them I saw visions of grumpy, old fishermen who don't deal with others well. Just a thought.

Anyways, I still have a few more otters to talk about. Stay tuned for the next blogs to hear more about the wonderful world of the otter! It "otter" be great!

Thanks for reading this blog. If you enjoyed it, you can comment below or you can email me at I'm "otter" here!