This post explores the meanings behind the new items and words that are included in the Homer’s Chiliad event.
Tortoises come out to play during Insanity Mode. The first thing to consider about tortoises is how they are not turtles. Turtles are water-based, living mostly in water, coming to land to lay eggs, eating sea-life (fish), and having a swimmer’s body. (Next time someone says that you have a turtle-shaped body, take it as a compliment.) Tortoises are land-based, have feet instead of fins, are vegetarians, and coolest of all, they can retract their heads into their shells. Yes, more like “Teenage Mutant Ninja Tortoises”. 😀
Apparently the word “tortoise” is the older word over “turtle”. Turtle came through French where it also meant tortoise. So we end up with two words for the “same thing” and that allows us to distinguish between the tortoise types. Tortoise came through Latin but the spelling seems to have been influenced by “porpoise” (which etymologically means “pork fish” btw), another French influence. Without the French getting all up in our words, we might have ended up with “tortuce” or a similar spelling. (Another variant, “tortuge”, would line up alongside such foreign words such as Spanish tortuga.)
In North America the go to word seems to be turtle. That was my first word choice when I thought about these creatures. I think turtle sounds more English and is easier to spell (and pronounce) than tortoise. I think that’s why that word has won out here as the more common word to refer to all types of “turtles”.
I guess the Space Coyote was so named due to being a coyote (duh) and maybe how he manifested from some planets in the sky. Watch the episode, El Viaje Misterioso de Nuestro Jomer (The Mysterious Voyage of Homer), it’s fun.
During this minor event we collected (Guatemalan) Insanity Peppers. The first question arises: Do insanity peppers really exist?
As far as I can tell — not being a lover of burning my face off — even with the hottest pepper in the world, the Carolina Reaper, we’re just looking at major discomfort but not hallucinations. There are chemical changes in the body (endorphins released), but basically if you’re imagining something it’s on you. The writers of this episode said they wanted to institute a “trip” but didn’t want to rely on drugs for that to happen. They chose these peppers. So, when you hear “insanity pepper” you should really be hearing “drugs”. lol.
Now, I know it wasn’t in the game but the peppers have a second name in the show: “Quetzlzacatenango”. The Simpsons Wiki has some of the word broken down in their trivia section, except that they’re using the spelling of “Quetzalacatenango” (a second ‘z’ is missing, at least).
The city in Guatemala, Quetzaltenango, is named via Nahuatl. In this Native American language it’s common to end words in -tl. I think this is where the show’s “Quetzl-” begins (even with the intrusive ‘z’). That’s about all I’m going to go over with that, without learning Nahautl or Quechua (the Mayan language of that region). I think the entire word is just a corruption of the real city’s name.
Make Cletus Use His Knowledge of Sibling-Mating Genetics
This goes with the dialogue: “I’m a direct descendant of Mendel himself. On both sides!”
Mendel experimented with cross-breeding of plants and animals and helped us to discover genetics. If Cletus is a relative, then he is purporting to somehow know all about plant genetics from this.
A direct descendant is a descendant through children as opposed to descent through marriages or cousins. If Mendel were to have children (he did not), and we go the quick route through one generation, then Mendel would have two children, male and female, and then those two would have Cletus. He would be a direct descendant through his mother and a direct descendant through his father, both leading to Mendel himself. It could go through a further path, let’s say four generations, then those two children of Mendel could marry people very unrelated to them, and one of each of their children could do the same, etc., then these great-grandchildren could meet up again (with a slightly more diverse gene pool) and create Cletus.
Also, apparently Brandine and Cletus are siblings…. Cletus is knowledgeable. Cletus makes you think.
“And I am really good at telling if dresses are blue or gold.”
This was a meme from about a year ago that started on Tumblr, where some people would see a black and blue dress, while others would see a white and gold dress. (This had to do with our perception of white-balance. It’s confusing. Read the link.) Apparently, Space Coyote always knows. (So do I, btw. 😉 )
What do you think of these interpretations? Have a different reading of anything? Anything else from the Homer’s Chiliad event that you wanted covered? Comment below.