I wanted my blog to have a name that was both memorable and relevant. This is how I came up with Platypus Pandemonium …
The platypus symbolises my image of Australian wildlife … it’s a quirky oddball, something you couldn’t make up without being regarded with deep suspicion. We are touring Tassie in search of the strange and what could be stranger than an egg laying mammal with the beak of a duck. The platypus is my number one target for the trip, and I’ll be deeply disappointed if we don’t see one. I’m proud to name my blog after the ultimate oddball, with whom I feel a peculiar affinity.
For the first 53 years of its existence Tasmania was known as Van Diemen’s Land and its inhabitants as Vandemonians. It is but a small leap, or in my case rotten keyboard skills, to get from Vandemonian to Pandemonium.
The word Pandemonium is taken from John Milton’s Paradise Lost, where it signifies the capital of Hell, the place where all the little devils hang out. The word is derived from the Greek pan, meaning “all” and daimon, meaning “devil”. Tassie being the home of the Tasmanian Devil, an iconic part of the local fauna that could, until recently, be found all over the island, it seemed entirely reasonable to use the word Pandemonium in reference to it.
The platypus is relatively common in Tassie, so combining its name with the word “pandemonium” to imply “All over Van Diemen’s Land (Tasmania)” sums up my ambition for our trip.
So now you know … there is indeed method in my madness. Clever, eh?