Moooore cows

Last week I wrote about Antarctic cows – it was Friday, and who doesn’t want to look at a photo of a fully grown Australian man wearing a bovine onesie whilst plunging into the frigid waters of the frozen continent just before hometime at the end of the week? I thought that would be it – one post, all done. Then this week came along. Basically, it’s been a frozen rodeo. First, Professor Klaus Dodds put out a call for idioms that include the word “ice” – of course the first thing to come up was THIS gem:


Traditionally, the saying “there’s no cow on the ice” has the meaning “there’s nothing to worry about.” I guess that means that Admiral Byrd ought to have been developing a furrowed brow at quite an alarming rate, given that he took 3 cows south…

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Mr Elsworth Bunce, of The American Guernsey Cattle Club, believed that only 66% worry was necessary, and he said as much to Mr Burlingham of the James Manufacturing Company, providers of the shelter for the beasts:

So, the cattle club and the James Manufacturing Company were on board – but what about the public? This story did of course gather huge public interest back in the 1930s, helped in no short part by press releases that contained gems like this:

Seriously, I couldn’t make this stuff up! I am currently taking up a fellowship at the American Geographical Society Library in Wisconsin. Wisconsin is, of course, the dairy capital of the USA. Famous for custard (and, apparently, these udder mugs?), it also turns out to be the perfect place to delve into the story of the cows from a marketing and publicity angle. What new ice-creamy details will emerge over the next 2 weeks? I can’t wait to find out!

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