The tale of the goosefoot, Girl Sadie and the Cattleman

Posted on October 23, 2009


Regular readers may remember a springtime post about the goosefoot maples that grow around the Writing Studio and Baitshop.  This month I noticed their leaves have faded to pale yellow, and look even more like goose feet.

Goosefoot maple in autumn

I’ve also noticed that the spring post (Caught goosefooted at the end of a lingering spring) was plagiarized, text, photos and all, by an evil blog scraper. More than once, actually, stolen first from Torch Lake Views and then again from the blog scraper who stole it to begin with. How do I know this? Aha.

I stumbled upon the theft while googling completely unrelated matters.  Imagine my surprise to find a link to “Caught goosefooted at the terminal of a tarrianced springtime.”  Imagine my further surprise, upon following the link, to find a post featuring my own photos, including one of my own hand holding tender green goosefoot maple blossoms. Hmmm. Upon further inspection, I stepped through the looking glass into a world where Girl Sadie and the Cattleman cavort amongst the moosewoods of Paradise Shores, and Kathy Windiate “holds her new boat in the H2O over on the east side of Torch Lake.”  I can just about see Kathy doing that, can’t you?  Or John anyway.

Here is another example of what I apparently wrote in Wonderland:

“Associating their leads appeared like a good thought. Decelerated them downwardly anyways, as they were ne’er able to concord on an flight route until yesterday morn. They took away tandem and vanished over a hill. Girl Sadie re-emerged shortly order, by herself, looking smug. She holded stolen her neckband. We backtracked and saw the Cattleman, haring away for place dragging the tethers behind him. Fille Sadie ‘s neckband is still losing, and I am rethinking the connected ropes agreement.”

In the more familiar universe that you and I generally occupy together, I had written:

“Linking their leashes seemed like a good idea. Slowed them down anyway, as they were never able to agree on an escape route—until yesterday morning.  They took off in tandem and disappeared over a hill.  Miss Sadie reappeared in short order, by herself, looking smug. She had slipped her collar. We backtracked and saw the Cowboy, haring off for home dragging the leashes behind him. Miss Sadie’s collar is still missing, and I am rethinking the linked leashes arrangement.” 

It could be worse, I suppose.  Under the post stolen from me was a link to a “Possibly related post” that the blog scraper had called “Make n’t Brawl as I Say-Unless I ‘m an Apostle-and if I Were I ‘d Glucinium Dead.”  I did not pursue that particular link.

The way I have it sussed out is this.  If the scraper blog where I found my work had been the first to steal it, the text would have been verbatim.  But the eccentric translation speaks to me of another scraper, who made off with my post, translated it well or badly into an unknown language, and published it.  Then the scraper I discovered stole it again and translated the unknown language into “English” for the American market.  I am consumed with curiosity about the travels of my post.  How many times has it been translated, and into what languages?  What wonders has it seen during its sojourn under its assumed name?  To what commercial purposes has it been put?  And what on earth is Glucinium?

In the meantime, Miss Sadie and the Cowboy, while properly appalled at the theft of their identities, rather like the sound of their alternative names.  Miss Sadie thinks “Girl Sadie” makes her seem younger and more carefree.  The Cowboy thinks “the Cattleman” makes him seem more grown-up and prosperous.  Miss Puss thinks they are both daft and is sharpening her claws preparatory to writing a DMCA takedown notice.