Three months ago, Stephen T. Colbert crossed the Rodent Education Front — big time — when he referred to the “Dramatic chipmunk” as, well, a chipmunk:
In the interests of scientific literacy, this blog could not let that aggression stand, man. So I did what I do, in Colbert’s mistake highlights misconception endangering us all:
[T]he well-documented American disinterest in biology should not get Colbert . . . off the hook this time. Rodent taxonomy is serious business. Something tells me you’d be happy to know the difference between a chipmunk and a guinea pig and a beaver when the zombie beaver apocalypse hits.
For a while, it seemed I would be forced to hold the line alone. Until, that is, September 3, when Jon Stewart finally guinea pig-piled on, invoking the Dramatic Chipmunk but quickly backtracking to correct himself:
Who, by the way, is actually a prairie dog. I’ve wanted to get that out there for a long time. It’s a prairie dog, he was known as the Dramatic Chipmunk, but the truth is he’s a prairie dog. I’ve been waiting a long time to say that.
How long, exactly, has Stewart been waiting to say that? My guess is since at least June 18, when Colbert originally made his (basically) inexcusable blunder.
Much patience, this padawan has.