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MoPOP at dusk, Seattle

Monday, March 2, 2015

The Scorpion and the Frog

An 1847 illustration of "The Scorpion and the Turtle" from the Persian Kalilah and Dimna
It is a very old tale. I have seen the protagonist victim depicted in various similar fables as a turtle, duck, swan and frog. And it goes something like this:
A scorpion asks a frog to carry him over a river. The frog is afraid of being stung during the trip, but the scorpion argues that if it stung the frog, both would sink and the scorpion would drown. The frog agrees and begins carrying the scorpion, but midway across the river the scorpion does indeed sting the frog, dooming them both. When asked why he would do such a foolish thing, the scorpion replies," Sorry man, it's just my nature."
Contrary to a misconception held by a few of you, I am not beating a war drum. I just think that it is wise to make sure that the person you bring to the dance doesn't end up stinging you or worse. Once you are in the middle of the river, I'm afraid it is usually too late.


Scorpion with chrysanthemum panel from Yvonne Bustamante Zodiac Tapestry

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