Tuesday, January 27, 2009
"I Am Lonely: The Solitary Frog's Lament": Toads for Jade
My brother John Kennedy, of Santa Fe New Music, was just in town to audition musicians at the IU Jacobs School of Music for the Spoleto Music Festival held in Charleston, South Carolina. His visit here once a year gives us a rare chance to have dinner together and share stories.
This year John carried letters from his daughters Jasmine and Jade. Jade is an artist, and I really need to scan and upload her handwritten letter to convey its beauty. (There are many subtle colors in the round organic forms living behind the lines and words.) She had this to say:
On Sunday we got toads! They are so cute! One of our toads is named Sandy. Today me and mom were playing with Sandy and she hopped out of the cage and I couldn't find her because she was behind the cage. Jazzie's frog is Kermit. Mine is Carrot. I might change it later, Well bye!
Jade and Jasmine might like playing a computer game designed by Elena Bertozzi, "I Am Lonely: The Solitary Frog's Lament", available at the Ardea Arts website:
This game was created over the summer of 2008 with an Undergraduate Research grant from UWW. Biologist Jeff McKinnon wanted a game that would interest high school students in Wisconsin frogs. The game teaches players how to identify 12 frogs by their calls, habitats and markings. We are very proud to have made it to the finalist round of the Serious Games Showcase in Orlando Florida. Make sure your speakers are on.
I just played the game and I'm happy to say that I found my solitary female toad a mate. They have exchanged gametes, and more Wisconsin toads should result. Oops, played again and left my toad in a very dangerous place, near a turtle! Must go back and try to get it right. There are wonderful frog and toad sounds in this game.