Thursday, January 27, 2011

Nabokov's butterflies

Two butterflies today... 
One courtesy of actor John Cusack who posted this image (top) on Twitter of an artwork he created. (Relevance - Cusack starred in the classic flick High Fidelity, adapted for the screen from the novel by Nick Hornby. Which also means he qualifies as a RubyfireWrites literary crush.)
The other, courtesy of Vladimir Nabokov, whose butterfly theory has been proven 65 years after he first posited it. Besides being a writer (Lolita, Pale Fire) Nabokov was a self-taught butterfly expert and curator of lepidoptera at Harvard University's Museum of Comparative Zoology. So he'd be pretty pleased to know that three decades after his death critics have conceded that his theory on the evolution of Polyomattus blues is valid.
It's all rather technical, so perhaps you'd prefer this anecdote:
Once during a butterfly hunt, Nabokov met a man making his way down a trail in the Rocky Mountains. He asked the man if he'd seen any butterflies up there. No, said the man, no butterflies. Nabokov continued hiking up the same trail and found the mountain to be positively aflutter with butterflies. 
Conclusion: you see what you look for.


evaf said...

oooh, does this mean i'm allowed to have a crush on robert pattinson because he's in a book adaptation? hmm, maybe not quite the same.

Rubyfire Writes said...

God no! I think you missed the word 'literary' ...! ;)

evaf said...

i suppose it doesn't quite count as literature. i'll have to stick with the guys from 'the vampire diaries'.