Previously (in https://cidu.info/2022/05/16/never-wear-around-your-neck-anything-that-comes-out-of-your-tail-end/ ) we explored the precedence of flutter-by before butterfly — to the surprise of many, including me.

Recently Andréa noticed: “BTW – I don’t know if it’s because of Monarch Butterfly Migration Season, or what, but have YOU noticed a plethora of caterpillar-to-butterfly jokes? I think I’ve seen 15-20 in the past week.”

Then almost immediately after seeing her mail, I ran across this from David Borchart in “Bob Mankoff presents: show me the funny (animal edition)” at Comics Kingdom:

Further … we went looking for more, and Andréa took a look for the ones she had encountered. And we all realized it had not been a widespread phenomenon from multiple sources, but an obviously conscious and intended series from the (don’t hold your breath for the duration of this title) “Bob Mankoff Presents: Show Me The Funny (Animal Edition)” people.

Nonetheless, no reason not to share their accomplishments with the CIDU crowd!


  1. Note to Leo Collum: butterflies don’t have 12 prolegs, like the caterpillar. They have 6 legs, like all insects. This is as opposed to the McCallig comic, in which the butterfly has no legs. Also, both are inexplicably drawn as winged caterpillars. Butterflies do not retain their larval form as adults.

    I like how the larger net-wielders become progressively less colorful in the Philips cartoon.

  2. Kafka’s insect was a (brrrr) cockroach, not a butterfly, far as I understand. Might’ve made the book less repulsive (says the woman who never encountered one ’til she moved to FL and would rather have snakes wound around her legs than see another cockroach, senkuveddymuch).

  3. Carl Fink: It’s interesting to see how differently Callum drew the butterflies in the two panels he has in this collection.

  4. Andrea, when I first went North to live, and saw the little things called “cockroaches” most places — annoying and dirty as they are – still they were nothing to put up against the monsters we had in Florida and called cockroaches or sometimes “Palmetto bugs”. I nowadays use that latter term (insofar as I ever need to talk about them) to make it clear from the start I don’t mean the miniature ones we have up here.

  5. Carl Fink beat me to the compulsory “Umm, actually…” comment. I noticed many of the artists drew the butterflies as caterpillars with wings, legs and all. Having no drawing skills myself, I have no idea why they wanted to work that hard.

  6. Carl Fink, I was also wondering in the Phillips cartoon why the third figure was done in black and white. And didn’t explicitly notice until now that it’s a (space) alien, intent on capturing the human.

    P,S, Isn’t it a boon that they print the artists’ names, not leaving us at the mercy of scrawled signatures?

  7. @TedD, I noticed that too! But kept it anyway since it was (re-)published within a sequence that all seemed to fit.

  8. IF I were to move back Up Nort’, ever, it’d be ’cause of these mouse-size ‘palmetto bugs’ . . . we can’t spray ’cause of the dogs, but I still see one a week or so, indoors. Now, spiders and snakes . . . no problem. Don’t bother me in the least, but these things . . . I keep a bottle of WINDEX in every room and spray the heck out of them – it does the job. Then Hubby has to come and dispose of it.

    We never have food out; we replaced ALL our cardboard boxes with plastic totes, we have out r**ch motels, but there still has to be that odd one that comes in to give me the creeps.

  9. The objection that TedD raised about the “alien” comic would also apply to the “social butterfly”, but I don’t see any reason to limit the butterflies, or flutterbyes (and gutterflies) to a single aspect of their existence.

  10. I was being nitpicky based on the stated theme the original post was trying to demonstrate exists in abundance. This is a fun site and I regretted the post shortly after I made it. The collection (ha!) of comics were fun and comments even more so.

  11. @TedD there is abso no need for apology! I was glad to see you point out the minor mismatch to the theme, as it gave me a prompt to bring up my own previous hesitation on that same point. No ill feeling involved!

  12. @ TedD – I agree with Mitch: raising the distinction was a useful point for discussion.

    P.S. Today I discovered a reference that ascribes “Flutter-bye” not to etymology, but rather to a “Spoonerism”.

  13. Should it not be flutter-by, as in a butterfly flutters by, as opposed to flutter-bye (I don’t think butterflies say ‘bye’ as they are fluttering by)?

  14. thefungiforager: I assume you were referring to the butterflies, not the cockroaches (which will probably be here until the Sun dies).

  15. @ Andréa – Re: “Flutter-bye” – I agree with you that the optical construction would seem more parallel without the final “e”, but the “-bye” spelling is necessary to ensure correct pronunciation. If one spells “flutterby” without the final “e”, the reader might be tempted to think of it as “flutter-bee“. (My surname is another pertinent example of “-by”=”-bee” pronunciation.) In “butterfly” there is no chance for confusion, the “-fly” ending would never be taken for “-flee”.

    P.S. The “-bye” spelling in my earlier comments wasn’t taken from the headline up above; I was once again alluding to “Supper’s Ready“, on the Genesis album “Foxtrot“:
    If you go down to Willow Farm
    To look for butterflies, or flutter-byes, or gutter-flies
    Open your eyes, it’s full of surprise, everyone lies…

  16. @ jajizi – My apologies for unnecessarily repeating your URL reference. When I first read your comment (on a small screen), I did not notice that the first half of the sentence was “highlighted”. (Given the color the CIDU template uses, one could just as well call it “lowlighted”.) My original intent was to find a direct URL to the image, but Larson’s paranoia made that impossible.

    P.S. @ CIDU Editors: is there any chance that the “link highlight” color could be made a little more visible? I realize the industry standard “brilliant blue” would look horrible for all the links in the left side menu, but the current brownish gray is nearly unnoticeable. Another option would be to change the primary text color to a true black, rather than the wishy-washy dark gray that the template now uses.

  17. It looks like Kilby’s request was acted upon. At least I assume that’s why the link brightened up today.

  18. However, it doesn’t appear that links that have been followed are changing color. That I don’t like.

  19. @ Brian – As is sometimes taught in Sunday school! “Be very careful what you ask for, you might actually get it.” But I’m not sure whether the “followed” link color was different in the old scheme.

  20. @ Brian – I can’t prove it now, but I thought it did change before, at least in the list of the 15 most recent comments. However, I may be confusing that with larK’s comment index, which uses the old (pre-meltdown) CIDU template.

  21. I also do prefer a different color for followed links, and it’s possible they were distinguished in the color scheme active for a couple months before this Saturday. That color scheme was chosen as a prepackaged “palette” of some 5 or 6 colors assigned to different uses in the Customization tool for our Theme. (I’m using capitalization to indicate the actual WP terminology.) It was one of very many Palettes made available in the Customization tool. I thought it was aesthetically a pretty good set of colors, though it had some down sides, including not making links very distinct from other text.

    What I adjusted yesterday, after selecting a different Palette with even paler background color, was a separate control for selecting specific colors. Not all the classes of items to be given color are separately available for this independent adjustment. There were just two: background (color or background image!) and the one I used which was identified with a grabbag sounding note like “titles, headings, links, home, categories, tags”. This is almost everything but content text. Also it seems these are all clickable. At any rate, there was no separate handling of followed and unfollowed links.

    If you’re thinking “Oh, I could fix that in the HTML” or “Oh, I could fix that in CSS” Pease bear in mind we do not have access to the HTML and PHP and SQL of the main WP engine or the Theme [which some of you persist in calling a template]. There is a provision for blog admins to drop in additional CSS code, as I mentioned in a recent discussion of HTML lists not working (and numbered comment lists along with them) — but that drop-in CSS feature requires a higher level of Plan than the one we have.

  22. @ Mitch – Thanks very much for trying out a new color for the links. I’m still trying to figure out whether I like the purplish blue or not. Comments from the peanut gallery would be greatly appreciated.

  23. @ Andréa – Even though you already almost sort of mentioned it, just today I ran into another (better) example of “…bye” spelling: the word “goodbye” — even though I’m sure that “goodby” is an acceptable alternate spelling, it doesn’t look (or “sound”) nearly as good.

    P.S. @ Mitch – The reason that some of us “persist” in referring to wordpress “themes” as “templates” is because that is the word that CIDU Bill tended to use for them. I suppose we should just be glad that the “official” terminology doesn’t call them “skins” (if it had done so, I would have insisted on calling them “shirts”). 😉

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