Walk a mile?

Image: Yücel ULUSOY

I spent my formative years traveling as part of a military family, globe trotting from country to country, state to state, planet to planet, soul to soul and was exposed to many cultures as well as languages.

The language that resonated most strongly in my conscious mind was that of the Advertising world…I was bombarded with, “..a little dab will do you,” “…put a Tiger in your tank,” “chew/chew double chew…” and a host of others including, “I’d walk a mile for a camel!”

Of course the “camel” in the ad campaign was a cigarette, but my curious mind wanted to know more about the relationship between a person and a camel….”what service could a camel offer a human that would humble a human to walking a mile?”

My research: A camel is an even-toed ungulate in the genus Camelus, bearing distinctive fatty deposits known as “humps” on its back. The three surviving species of camel are the dromedary, or one-humped camel (C. dromedarius), which inhabits the Middle East and the Horn of Africa; the Bactrian, or two-humped camel (C. bactrianus), which inhabits Central Asia; and the critically endangered wild Bactrian camel (C. ferus) that has limited populations in remote areas of northwest China and Mongolia. Bactrian camels take their name from the historical Bactria region of Central Asia. Additionally one other species of camel [3]in the separate genus Camelops, C. hesternus [4] lived in western North America and became extinct when humans entered the continent at the end of the Pleistocene.

So when my dear friend and mentor, Dr. George Clinton coined the suggestive phrase, “put a hump in your back and shake your sacroiliac…” I overlayed the suggested movements of the pelvic region with the humps on the back of a camel. Could it be that the camel has the keys to human dancing? Could it be that in another land, the camel vs. the dog was man’s (sic) best friend?

hmmm Dog spelled backwards is God and Camel spelled backwards is Lemac…LEMAC is: The Llista d’encapçalaments de matèria en català (LEMAC) is a Catalan language controlled vocabulary that includes subject headings — linguistic expression (a term or a phrase)- used by cataloguers to represent the thematic content of documents — a concept, event, name, or title- and that allows users to make a search in a catalogue, bibliography or index. LEMAC is created and maintained by the Servei de Normalització Bibliogràfica of the National Library of Catalonia (Biblioteca de Catalunya), and it is applied by librarians to the documents being catalogued, so that users can search items through access points other than authors, titles or publishers. Subject headings also allow users to retrieve headings together when the topic is the same and, at the same time, they show the topics covered in a given collection.

…I’d walk a mile for a Lemac with my best friend, God.

r.u.with me?