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Wolfram Bane (wolfram_bane@hotmail.com) writes...

Gargoyle Biology

Gargoyle females may only lay an egg every 20 years, and it takes the eggs 10 years to hatch. Eggs generally hath on the spring solstice. A few questions regarding theis process.

1/ Are the female gargoyles reproductive cycles tied specifically to Earth's cycles, or does it just happen to coincide with Earth's cycles upon a specific date for all females. ei - If a female who to be was fertile in 2008 was removed from Earth's standard timeline (ie time travel, journeying to Avalon, age acceleration or such), would her fertility be influenced by Earth's natural cycles/forces or her own biological systems? Would she become fertile when her body becomes physically as old as it would be in 2008, or is her fertility governed by Earth's natural forces in the year 2008, regardless of her biological age?
2/ Is a male's fertility governed by the same cycle. Ie - Griff was transported from 1940 to 1995. If he remained in 1940, his next mating cycle would have been in 1948, 8 years in his future. After being transported to 1995, would he enter his fertility period in 1998 alog with the rest of Earh's gargoyles, or would he still have to wait 8 years (ie 2003) and be out of synch with the rest of Earth's gargoyles?

Greg responds...

1. They are tied to the Earth cycle. Removing her from the Earth and its timeline would have less of an effect if, say, you removed her an hour before she became fertile. The longer she's been away from Earth, the more likely her cycle would shift.

But keep in mind that removing her from Earth only to put her back on Earth in a different Era would cause her (eventually) to match back up with the Earth cycle.

Having said ALL that, a garg who was biologically too young or too old to conceive is still going to be biologically too young or too old to conceive.

2. Given years to adjust, both males and females would make that adjustment. Given days or hours or perhaps even weeks, probably not.

Response recorded on October 14, 2003

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Wolfram Bane (wolfram_bane@hotmail.com) writes...

Gargoyle Biology

I have read that gargates (gargoyles and gargoyle beasts) are descended from dinosaurs. I was curious as to what species of dinosaur that gargates descended from. If no specific species of dinosaur, it is several species, an as yet unknown species, or just undetermined as to which species it is.

Greg responds...

The notion that gargates descended from dinosaurs was a merely one of many possibilities.

Response recorded on October 14, 2003

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Proofreading/Apologia...

I just received the following e-mail from my brother:

Subject: proofreading
Date: Wed, 24 Sep 2003 13:56:49 -0700
From: "Weisman, Jon"

Just my two cents, but I do feel you're a little strident about the proofreading. I'm completely sympathetic to the annoyance/frustration, but your discussion of your own errors undermines your argument. You misspelled a word in the very sentence about proofreading being good training. Then you say there's no point in identifying errors that you make, because you're dyslexic and because you make an effort. Who's to say that your reader isn't dyslexic or doesn't make an effort, either? All "Dan" did in his first sentence was leave out the word "have."

Personally, I think it's fine to ask your readers to proofread better, but I simply think you could be nicer about it. Since your replies do contain errors, good intentions or not, it just doesn't make sense to me to cop an attitude.

- Jon

Jon is, of course, correct. And so I apologize for my rant. In particular, I apologize to "dan" for taking my frustrations out on him.

My only defense is that all the lousy proofreading -- and there really is a lot of it -- creates a kind of cumulative frustration. I really do ignore it most of the time. I make fun of it (I hope in a good-hearted way with a smart-ass response) occassionally, and I only rarely blow a gasket. But that's not much of an excuse.

So let's all try to proofread a bit more, including me -- hell, especially me -- and I'll try to keep my temper.

Again, dan, sorry.


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dan writes...

hey greg i was wondering if the gargoyles most of the problems humans have? like eyesight, deafness etc? Is there any gargoyles that actually wear glasses?

Greg responds...

dan, reread your first sentence and tell me if it makes sense. Proofreading is a courtesy and good-training for just about anytyhing in life.

Seriously, why should I bother composing an answer to a question that you couldn't bother to read over yourself, just to make it intelligible.

And there's no point pointing out my own errors, of which I'm sure there are many scattered here and there. I do make mistakes, but I make every effort to proofread. My dyslexia causes me to miss a few things here and there, but nothing like the above.

Rant over.

Now, to answer your question, degenerative problems would be rare, as Gargoyles heal every night. They also are not prone to many diseases that might cause these problems, for the same reason. But it's possible that a gargoyle could become deaf and/or blind in a catastrophic situation that could not be healed in one night. Take Hudson's eye, for example. And gargoyles do get older, making healing more difficult and slower.

Response recorded on September 24, 2003

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taesaki writes...

Hello. Uh, well, this is a bit embarrassing, but I was reading the questions and I got a bit curious. I'm sorry if this is inappropriate. I hope it's not. Anyway, how DO the gargoyles make love, to each other and possibly to humans? I suppose you were trying to keep things clean, huh? *blushes* Well, I'm sorry! I really wanted to know! If you'd prefer not to post it to the whole world but you'd also like to take pity on a poor curious fan, email me at "taesaki@att.net". Thankies! =)

Greg responds...

Well, I'm not going to go into X-rated (or even R-rated) details on this site. And, as I mentioned recently, I make a policy of not answering people directly off this site.

The short answer is that Gargs don't do anything much different from humans, except that they have an extra appendage, and wings, which allow them to make love in flight.

After that, I'd say, "Use your imagination."

Response recorded on August 26, 2003

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Lisa- Mary writes...

what exactly is a gargoyle?

Greg responds...

If after 66 episodes you don't have the answer to that, then I'm not sure what I can add.

But, sigh, I'll give it a shot.

A gargoyle is a living creature. A sentient animal (as humans are) that happens to turn to a stone-like substance during the day.

Response recorded on August 08, 2003

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The Cat writes...

Hello Greg,

I am helping a few friends with their fan fiction and I thought I'd ask this. You know kind of do a research paper. Anyway, one of my friends wants to know if gargoyles evolved or were they just created by something or someone? I wouldn't know so I figured since you were one of the creators I'd ask you.

So,
1. Were the gargoyles created by a higher being than themselves?
Or
2. Did they evolve?

3. If they evolved, what did they evolve from?
Dinosaurs(that is actually my best guess)?
Dragons?
Komodo Dragons?

Well, thanks bye.

Greg responds...

I've answered this before. Research papers generally require research, so it might have been nice had you checked the archives. Even given its volume, the odds are that by now, 8-1-03, you'd have already gotten the answer to the question you posted back on 1-16-02.

But anyway, it all depends on what you believe. If you believe a higher power created life more-or-less as is, than that same higher power did the same for the Gargoyles. If you believe in evolution, so be that. Personally, I don't see evolution and creationism as mutually exclusive, so I believe in both, elegantly. But that's just me.

If you believe in Evolution, they evolved back in the era of dinosaurs, but I'm not going to say from what.

Response recorded on August 01, 2003

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Vanity writes...

Questions regarding gargoyle sex and sexuality.

1) Do gargoyles reckognize their own sexiness, do they reckongnize that they may or maynot be sexier than another gargoyle?

2) Do gargoyles just instinctively know (or practice) sex or are they taught in some manner?

3) What is/are the function(s) of the female gargoyles' breasts? (Milk, motor oil, chiefly sexual)

4) Do tails play a role in sexual activity? If so how?

5) Do gargoyles practive pre mate-bonded sex, or generally stay virgin up to chosing a mate?

6) Oral sex?

7) Is rape a problem for gargoyles? Either by eachother or by humans whilst they are young.

8) Which would you consider more sexually active male gargoyles or female?

9) Goliath told Elisa that when she was human he hadn't realized how pretty she was. What physical traits in humans can potentially attract the eye of :
A- A male gargoyle to a human female?**
B- A female gargoyle to a human male?**
**no need for great specificity here, merely general qualities that may be attractive to a gargoyle

10) Do they suffer STD's?

note: I am not trying to be cute, I consider these serious questions, I however realise that question (4) is somewhat well...wrong, but I believe in its legitimacy.

Greg responds...

1. Huh? I think self-esteem/ego/etc. issues aren't much different for gargs than humans.

2. I'd lean more toward instinct, but I'm sure there is some discussion.

3. Milk. Garg females breastfeed the hatchlings.

4. Use your imagination.

5. Generally they mate for life.

6. Are you offering?

7. Without getting into rape specifically, I think the series has made an effort to show that no species corners the market on either good or evil.

8. Equal.

9. Likely the qualities they have in common, I suppose. Elisa's hair for example, I think, is very attractive to Goliath. Her lack of wings, tail and horns of any kind is probably not so attractive until (a) his eyes are opened during "The Mirror" and (b) he comes to terms with the strong attraction he has for her soul. I would think that for a gargoyle female, there wouldn't be that much in human males to find attractive. But that might just be my bias showing.

10. Not likely, as they heal every day, no illness really has the opportunity to take hold.

I get that you're serious. I tried to answer as seriously as I could and stay in the ASK GREG realm of PG. If you're attending the Gathering this year, Thom Adcox and I will be hosting a late night "Blue" Mug-A-Guest, i.e. an opportunity to ask us adult questions about the series. Over 18 only please.

Response recorded on June 20, 2003

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Lex Cousin writes...

You can explain how is the reproduction of a gargoyle, you can specify times (hatch)?, it dont know if this contradicts the rules of the forum, but
seems me interesting. For example Angela's birthday. When it is when Demona put the egg or when breaks?

Greg responds...

I'm sorry, but I'm just not clear what you're asking, but I'll do my best.

I've talked about Gargoyle reproduction before; check out the "Gargoyles Biology" Questions answered archive for details. But basically, gargoyles lay a new generation of eggs every twenty years. Those eggs hatch ten years later.

Demona laid the egg containing Angela in the year 988.

However, because time passes differently on Avalon, Angela didn't hatch until 1078.

Response recorded on June 10, 2003

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matt writes...

kinda a follow up question here:

if two gargoyles were twins hatched out of one egg (and YES i know how extremely rare this is) would they look identical or not? since they come out of one egg, biology suggests that they would be identical twins (and YES, i know you are not a biologist) but i seem to recall that somewhere i read that no gargoyles, no matter how closely related, are identical, they all look different, as Lex says in Awakening. so, identical or fraternal twins?

thanx again Greg for humouring us on these nearly pointless questions...

Greg responds...

I honestly don't know enough about biology to answer this absolutely. But if what you're saying above is true, than I guess the answer is identical. If THAT is true, than I guess Lex's statement (which you're misquoting and/or misparaphrasing, by the way), is a reflection of the rarity of twins. He hasn't seen any. Neither have I.

Response recorded on June 05, 2003

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Artemis writes...

This isn't really a question, but rather a corrective comment.

Obviously Goliath wouldn't know, but I don't know about you, but Thailog is NOT Goliath's son. They are brothers. Until I went to a genetics seminar with my AP bio class, this would never have crossed my mind.

Anyway, to the point. The reason Thailog can't be Goliath's son is because of genetics. Thailog's genes came from Goliath, which in turn came from Goliaths parents. Now, therefore, technically Thailog has the same parents as Goliath (since all his chormosomes can be traced back through Goliath's parents).

There's more to it that, but I wanted to keep it it terms understandable. Another simpler way to make the argument is that since Thatilog has the same genes as Goliath, they're sort of like identical twins, born years apart (and of course identical twins are siblings of each other). It's the same with the labrynth clones as well, they are bothers of the gargs they were cloned from.

Delilah is a whole different story. I can't explain that one, but i guess she's a half sister to both Elisa and Demona, but I can't prove it genetically.

Sorry if I seemed to have a "you're wrong, I'm right" attitude, but I just wanted to let you know what the real world truth was. Now Gargoyles Universe truth, well, I can't tell you what's right and wrong, that's for you to decide.

Thanx for listening to my lecture :)

Greg responds...

Actually, I found this post very interesting and informative. It doesn't change the emotional reality of how Thailog and Goliath feel about each other. But it's good to know. And I appreciate -- greatly -- that you weren't trying to make me look foolish, just filling me in on an obvious gap in my knowledge.

It's over a year since you posted this, so I don't have any idea if you're still hanging around. But Thank You, Artemis. It is appreciated.

Response recorded on June 05, 2003

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F7 Addict writes...

This one is purely out of personal curiousity.

Given the fact that Gargoyles are warm blooded, have mammatory glands (for those who fell asleep in Anatomy, look at Demona and Angela to figure out what the m glands are), and lay eggs, it's safe to assume that genetically they are closer to the infamous duck-billed platypus than humans. (another argument against the Goliath/Elisa issue)

Was this done on purpose or am I reading too much into it?

Greg responds...

I think "those who fell asleep in Anatomy" would have better luck looking up "mammary glands" than "mammatory glands."

I'm not sure what you're reading into it. What was done on purpose was the idea that Gargoyles are a separate species. Not specifically platypusian. Gargates, I think we've been calling them.

Response recorded on May 30, 2003

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Tukins writes...

Hey Greg
I'm not gonna bother you long, I only got one question

I was just wondering, since gargoyles see upon the entire clan as their family, and they concider them all brothers and sisters, how do they prevent interbreeding? I mean, they don't know just how closely they are related to eich other, doesn't that lead to problems sometimes?

That question has been bothering me for a while now, hope you can answer it for me

Greg responds...

It's been bugging you, but you chose not to check the archives for the answer. Instead you posted a question that I didn't get to for a year and a half.

Couldn't have been bugging you too much.

Within a generation, you're not going to get anyone mating with their biological brothers or sisters, because they don't have any among their rookery siblings. First Cousins are a possibility, I suppose. I have posited in the past that smell creates a natural anti-disposition for a gargoyle choosing a mate that he or she is too closely related to.

Response recorded on May 16, 2003

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Adam Carlson writes...

how many eggs can a gargoyle female lay at one time? during there life time?
And, if there are 36 eggs taken to Avalon, how many gargoyles lived at Castle Wyvern before the massacure.

Greg responds...

1. One. Two on EXTREMELY rare occasions, maybe. Maybe.
2. Three or four tops.
3. I've answered this before, and I don't remember what I said exactly. About forty. But nearly half the clan migrated to form a new clan sometime before the massacre. So there are more eggs than you'd expect from the small numbers that were massacred.

Response recorded on April 22, 2003

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Dragon7 writes...

Dear Mr. Weisman I find your posts on gargoyle physiology and culture very fascinating. Having recently read some of your earlier answers to the newly identified Loch Ness Clan a question came to my mind as to how this clan raised and cared for its offspring. It is widely known that gargoyles in the other clans in the gargoyles universe lay eggs is this also true of the Lochness Clan and if so do they put their eggs into caves until hatching as the Wyvern Clan did in generations past?

Greg responds...

Yep.

Response recorded on April 15, 2003

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Vashkoda writes...

I've never bother to question any of the following, and I still pretty much accept it as "just the way things are", but I figured I'd still ask about it just in case it led to any interesting revelations:

1) Why *do* gargoyles assume threatening poses while they sleep? You've mentioned that gargoyles have a similarity to scarecrows. Also, one explanation for building gargoyles on medieval churches was to scare away demons. But what's the "Gargoyles-Universe" explanation? Is it really that effective in scaring away predators (and what kind of animal would attack something made of stone, anyways?). Even scarecrows lose their effectiveness over time, once birds get used to them.

2) In Japan, where the clan said that they face inward as a sign of trust to the humans, they still strike frightening poses. Is this "pose-behavior" therefore something instinctual?

3) Similarly, why did the trio, Hudson and Bronx assume threatening poses as the Magus's sleep spell took place? I'm not sure the gargoyles even understood what was happening, or identified the Magus as a threat (Lex says, "What's he talking about?" and Hudson asks, "What's all this?" just before the spell). As they see the magic swirling around them, I think they get suspicious, but it still seems odd for them to assume attack poses at that moment (I would have expected them to be confused or afraid, but not violent, especially if they haven't had time to understand what's going on). I was wondering whether the fact that they were becoming stone had triggered their instinctual pose-behavior, or were they indeed getting ready to attack the Magus?

Greg responds...

1. Partially, it's just tradition. Keep potential enemies away. A reminder to any potential attacker of what they might face.

2. Possibly. You're in a state of relative vulnerability. The pose might lend some sense-of peace-of-mind.

3. That's possible too, although I always assumed that they were on the verge of leaping into action at the attack when they got caught in it.

Response recorded on April 11, 2003

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The Endless writes...

1) Are the Gargoyles and the Garg-Dogs (prolly not correct, please don't yell!) related evolutionarily to humans, animals, plants, and cells as are all other known denizens of the biological kingdoms? i.e. Did Gargoyles and Garg-Dogs emerge from the same kind of ancestral single-celled organisms that every other animal comes from and if so, what are the closest evolutionary relatives to the Gargoyles besides the Garg-Dogs?

2) Does a Gargoyle in stone form weigh as much as he does in flesh form?

3) Why is the humanoid form (arms, upright walking, opposible thumbs) most prevalent in the known sentient races? (Fae, Gargoyle, Human)

4) Are Gargoyles photosynthetic organisms? If not, how much food do they need to eat and do they actually produce some type of feces or is stone skin their waste product?

Greg responds...

1. Yes, but I'm not going to answer your question specifically.

2. It seems like it must, but I don't know.

3. I don't know this either.

4. Everytime I even try to answer these types of questions, I wind up digging a deeper hole for myself. Tonight, I'm shovel-free, so I'll demure.

Response recorded on July 22, 2002

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Galvatron writes...

2.Are there any viruses and bacteria within gargoylesthat can survive stone sleep? If not why? If nature can develop such a defense system as the stone sleep surely nature can develop something that can allow viruses and bacteria to survive (if theres a niche in nature waiting to be filled then it will be filled) unless gargoyles are fundamentally different from humans and other animals on this planet?

Greg responds...

Galvatron,

Again, I kinda feel like you're TRYING to stump me. To make me or the show look foolish.

If that's the goal, congratulations.

If not, I'm not sure how to help you feel comfortable. I've said time and time again that I'm not a scientist. I don't have all the answers. You seem much more well-versed in this then I am. So figure it out to your own satisfaction based on the evidence in the aired episodes.

Response recorded on June 10, 2002

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Galvatron writes...

Gargoyle diseases
1.Do gargoyles get cancer? If so can they die from it?

Greg responds...

1. Tend to think not, but I'm not ruling it out.

Response recorded on June 10, 2002

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Galvatron writes...

Stone Sleep
1. Do Gargoyles cells engage in mitosis/reproduction during stone sleep?
2.How can they be in suspended animation during stone sleep when many biological functions are still active? It doesn't make sense.

Greg responds...

1. I don't know what that means, so I cannot answer.
2. Makes sense to me. But I'm no scientist. How about you come up with an answer?

Response recorded on June 10, 2002

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Vanity writes...

I have a question. Relating to biology.

In the animal kingdom, animals(let's use chimps), chimps show a ratio in the wild and in captivity to be 50% right handed and 50% left handed. In the human population as a total about 75% are right handed and 25% Left handed. Some human societies vary of course some being 95% to 5% right to left up to 70% and 30% right to left. I couldn't find this in the archives so, do gargoyles have handedness, and if so of the gargoyle population are they like chimps with a 50/50 Right to left handers or more like humans with a heavy slant to Right handers?

Greg responds...

Some facts about animation "handedness..."

It's very hard to keep track of.

Storyboard artists like to have the freedom to allow characters to freely use either hand, depending on how they want to stage a scene.

To some degree, particularly in an action show, this might make sense. I.e. the heroes and villains all TRAIN themselves to be at least semi-ambidextrous, because their lives may depend on it.

So although I have no idea what handed our various human characters are, I'm going to say that Gargoyles are ambidextrous. Because visually, the series seems to confirm that fact.

Response recorded on April 16, 2002

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While I'm thinking of it....

Behold the following exchange (then skip to the bottom):

Received from pc-17.di.uoa.gr on Monday, September 17, 2001 04:52:03 AM
Aris Katsaris writes...

'kay, you were in your Disney office and couldn't answer this the last time I asked it, so you told me to repost it... Here goes:

<g> Another timeline thingy - this time less of a question though and more of a possible correction (unless I'm missing something)...

You recently said that Tom, Katherine and Magus entered Avalon on September 28th 995. But we also know that the eggs would normally hatch on the spring equinox (about March 21st) of 998. This means that there normally remained 2 and 1/2 years for the eggs to hatch... This time they spent on Avalon.

You can probably see where I'm going... Multiply by 24, and we see that they had to spent 60 years (Earth time) on Avalon. This takes them all the way to 995+60 = 1055.

Obviously the closest "20-year circle of the earth" was 1058... Quite near by. So why did you have them hatch on 1078, 20 years later, instead?

I don't think I've made any errors with the math... :-)

Greg responds...

The eggs were laid in 988. From 988 until 995 (seven out of the normal ten years for gestation) time passed normally. That means they needed @three more years to hatch once they arrived on Avalon. One year on Avalon equals 24 in the real world, as you noted. 3 x 24 = 72. 995 + 72 puts us at 1067. Making the closest twenty year cycle at 1078, as I noted.

You're calculations assume two and a half years instead of three to hatch. And that makes sense given the dates listed. The obvious dopey answer is that I was not calculating to the month but to the year. And so I could acknowledge the mistake and redo everything. And maybe on my next pass through the timeline, I'll do just that.

But to be honest, maybe I won't. When dealing with Avalon's mysterious flow of time, I believe my calculations are close enough. If the eggs weren't ready until March of 1059 even, then I'm still correct -- so it's not quite as big an error as it appears at first glance. Four years passing in the real world represents only two months on Avalon. Perhaps all that traveling and magic, etc. set the eggs back just a bit. If it set them back two months, then I'm right, and they're just slightly late bloomers.

And yes, I'm making excuses. So I'll save this exchange and decide at a later date.

For now, I'm sticking with my current calculations.

recorded on 03-04-02

With all this in mind...

I know I've established -- both here and in my own head (particularly with regards to G2198) that eggs hatch on the Spring Equinox.

But does anyone remember whether (and where) I've established what month the eggs are laid in?

I can't recall if this has come up yet.

Anyone know? And would this solve my problems at all?


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Creamy writes...

Yeah I knowm, stupid questions but...

1)When Gargoyles hatch are they infant or toodlers?
2)When first hatched can they crawl right off?
3)At about what time(month)of the year do they hatch?
4)You said that gargoyles nurse. So do the females take turns nursing all the hatchlings or just one?
5)For how long?
6)What age do gargyles usually learn to glide?
7)What did gargoyles do with hatchlings that were deformed or were found to have a mental retardation later on in life?

Greg responds...

1. Right when they hatch? Closer to infants.

2. No.

3. Generally, around Spring Solstice.

4. It's communal.

5. I'm not sure.

6. I'm not sure of this either. Something I wanted to explore in the future.

7. The clan takes care of its own.

Response recorded on January 15, 2002

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matt writes...

if a female gargoyle not living or having ever had lived on Avalon happened to have 4 biological children, would you say it was more likely that she either had twins born from one egg, or was able to lay an egg for an extra season as her female rookery siblings? in short, whats more likely, 4 eggs or 3 with one egg being twins?

Greg responds...

Neither, really. Though I guess the twin scenario, barely.

Response recorded on November 29, 2001

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Jacob writes...

Like you, I'm not a biologist, but this thing about a garg's wings bug me. You said that there are bones inside the wings, though you were not sure. But if there are some, then they can't be like the ones inside the arms or legs. Just watch one episode and you should notice what I mean. To fold them over the shoulders with only two large bones, they must be made of rubber, but that seems pretty unlikely. I would say that either instead of two large bones there are many vertebras, or instead of bones something else like cartilage.

I hope you understand what I mean.

What do your thoughts about it?

Greg responds...

I have bones in my arm and it still bends at the elbow.

Response recorded on November 29, 2001

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matt writes...

can a female gargoyle born, raised and living her life on Avalon generally have more than three eggs in her lifetime if she wanted to?

Greg responds...

Potentially, I think.

Response recorded on November 29, 2001

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The Cat writes...

Hi Greg,

Last one from me, for awhile anyway.
Ok, these are about disabilities. I'm disabled and I was wondering about this because it seemed to me that the only gargoyles that had anything wrong with them (such as blindness or missing a limb) aquired it in battle.

1. Are any gargoyls born with problems that cause a disability?(Like, I have heart problems and they caused me to have a stroke when I was 4 years old which caused the right side of my body not to work properly.)
2. Are any gargoyles born blind, mute, deaf or missing any limbs?
3. If yes, what does the rest of the clan do with them?
4. If no, why not?

Ok, I'm being chased off the computer. I better run. Bye.

Greg responds...

1. I don't know. I won't rule it out, but I have their healing factor to figure in. It's also possible that some eggs just don't hatch. But I'd have to think and do more research.

2. Same answer. I'm not sure at this point.

3. The clan takes care of its own in any case.

4. The answer, if the answer is no, would have something to do with the healing factor which begins to work even in the egg. But again, I haven't considered this yet, honestly.

Response recorded on November 29, 2001

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Gipdac writes...

Can gargoyles make their eyes glow or is it an involuntary action?

Greg responds...

I believe it's involuntary.

Response recorded on November 06, 2001

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matt writes...

ok, another kinda silly question:

is Leo's mane kinda just a beard that most other male gargoyles can grow? could Leo shave it off if he wanted too?
could Goliath or another male garg grow a "mane"? or is that mane not like a beard and strictly genetically connected with the English gargs?

Greg responds...

Well, of course, Leo could shave it off. He could theoretically use Nair too.

I doubt Goliath could grow a mane, however.

Response recorded on November 06, 2001

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Vashkoda writes...

Hey Greg. I haven't asked you any biology questions in a long time. I know that this topic has a tendency to irk you a little, so I limit myself to one subject: the gargoyles' stone-like skin.

1a) Is this substance more porous (like lava rock) than most kinds of stone (like granite)? I ask because you've said that a gargoyle's weight doesn't change when they transform, yet stone tends to be denser and far heavier than, say, a similar-sized piece of flesh or bone.

1b) If it is more porous, does that mean that it is easier to break apart than most kinds of stone? Would it have a greater tendency to crumble than to break into clean fragments?

2a) Would you say that this stone-like subtance is "alive", in the sense that biological processes are going on inside of it?

2b) If so, then would there be any changes in the substance's cohesion or other properties when a gargoyle dies in their sleep? i.e., does it become easier to break, or more solid? If Goliath and the others were only able to stay in such good shape over the centuries (no erosion by moss or ivy) because they were still "alive", I'm surprised that there were fragments of the Coldtrio preserved well enough to be used by Xanatos and Demona.

3a) Is it the "light energy" (for photosynthesis) or the "heat energy" of sunlight that gets stored and used by the gargoyles?

3b) Where would this energy be stored? Throughout their body, or only in their outer layer of skin where it is captured?

3c) Must it be solar energy, or could they also harvest artifical forms of light?

3d) Can they only capture this energy when they transform into the stone-like substance? (i.e., are the mechanisms needed to capture the energy only present when they are 'stone'?). Can the Mayan gargoyles, for example, still absorb any energy from sunlight when they are awake?

Thanks Greg. I hope this wasn't too painful for you (no more biology questions from me for at least several months, I promise).

Greg responds...

1a. I don't know.

1b. What does your observation tell you?

2a. To some limited extent, yes.

2b. Fragments is the key word.

3a. I'm guessing THERMAL energy. Just a guess.

3b. I don't know.

3c. I'm thinking heat, but I don't know.

3d. They need to be stone, but the pendants may compensate to some extent.

It was relatively painless, Vash, thanks.

Response recorded on October 10, 2001

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Mooncat writes...

If Gargoyles are biologically inclined to take a monogamous mate (as well as traditionally) why is it so easy for Thailog to discard Demona?

Can a gargoyle have physical relations with more than one other gargoyle before the "imprint" sets in? Or does the "imprint" set in during the first full physical relationship?

Greg responds...

Opportunistic programming allows Thailog to override certain impulses.

Generally, the latter.

Response recorded on October 10, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

Care to explain why the gargoyles in the British isles are so different since in London we have animal headed ways, in Loch Ness aquatic gargoyles and in wyvern the generic ishimura/guatemala kind?

Greg responds...

'Generic ishimura/guatemala kind', huh? Don't agree with that.

But no, I don't currently care to explain it.

Response recorded on September 11, 2001

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icemann writes...

Don`t think this ones been asked be for

Is there any way that technology in the future (2158 and beyond) could bypass the Gargoyles turning to stone? Cause if magic can do it, I can`t see why technology couldn`t replicate the same effect in some way.

Greg responds...

Not by 2198, or 2199 for that matter.

Response recorded on September 09, 2001

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matt writes...

both Proto-Mammals and Dinosaurs evolved from Reptiles. Proto-Mammals were very reptilian, but with some very Mammalian characteristics. they laid eggs, but probably nursed their young sometimes too. they lived at the beginning of the age of dinosaurs and most are considered "dinosaurs' in a very broad way, though scientifically they are not. Proto-Mammals would go on to evolve into mammals and what i'm wondering is if they also went to evolve into Gargates. from everything i know and you've told us, they fit the profile. some, like Dimetrodon, even had primative solar radiaters which could have evolved into the ability to store solar energy. in fact, Dimetrodon looks very similar to a garg beast to me, with a sail. i once asked you if gargs were related to Platypus cause of the varied similarities they have, and if Gargates did evolve from Proto-mammals than they were related since platypus is one of the few remaining Proto-Mammals not extinct. are proto-mammals the ancestors of gargates?

Greg responds...

matt, how many ways can I say I DON'T KNOW enough about biology to answer this question?

You're theory (assuming the facts are accurate) is interesting. So... MAYBE!

Before I say yes, I'd have to do a lot of research that I haven't yet done.

Response recorded on September 08, 2001

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GLITCH

okay something very weird just happened. I was answering a question that Matt posted about the 'chameleon gene'. Then suddenly, the question just changed. My answer (which I was in the process of writing) remained , but there was now a new question listed above it.....

Hmmmm.... Okay, I think Gore just re-activated the question answering function while I was typing and we had a little glitch here. Matt's question was lost. I'll try to recreate it a bit...

1. Matt wrote something like, "I know you're not a biologist, but how does this chameleon gene' work."
2. Matt thought gargoyles were the sources of various legends, but does the chameleon gene cause gargoyles to look like legendary characters.
3. He asked whether the gene would start changing the looks of familiar clans over time. Or something like that.
4. He stated that he had his own theories as to heredity, etc. And he challenged me to 'sell' him on my chameleon gene theory.
5. He had at least a fifth part to the question (maybe more) but I didn't even get the chance to read it.

My answers to his original question; not to the paraphrased versions above. (Man, this is a mess.)

1. I have no idea. It was just a random thought.

2. No. Definitely not. You're first thought was correct.

3. Natural Mutations (not the Sevarius kind) are likely to occur. They occur to some degree in all species. I was simply positing (and only positing) that Gargoyles might have a gene that causes mutations to occur more frequently. But mostly, garg appearance is defined by heredity.

4. I don't have to sell you on anything. For starters, I'm not sure I've sold myself on it. Second, I'm under no obligation to compete with your personal beliefs. Third, if it isn't in the 66 -- I'm not guaranteeing it. Even some of that is suspect. Sevarius theorized that gargs absorb solar energy while stone. But that was just a theory. He may have been right. He may have been wrong. He may have been partially right. Or he may have been lying intentionally. See?


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matt writes...

in 1996, is Lex and his clone the only gargoyles in the world with their particular wing structure?

if not, what other clans have members with wings like that? Avalon?

Greg responds...

No.

Again, I'm not going to answer this so as not to some day limit the artists I work with.

Response recorded on September 01, 2001

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Saber writes...

Are humans and gargoyles genetically compatable as far as having children?

Greg responds...

Not without help from science or sorcery.

Response recorded on September 01, 2001

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kmd writes...

Hi Greg,

First I must say I adore Gargoyles.

I hope these questions don't offend you.

1. Do gargoyles have sex like humans do?

2. If so, do they experience pleasure?

3. Could a human and a gargoyle have sex? (i.e., Goliath and Elisa)

Greg responds...

1. Largely but not exclusively.

2. Yeah, duh.

3. They can certainly give pleasure to each other. But I'm not going into detail in this forum.

Response recorded on September 01, 2001

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Jacob writes...

I've got a few questions about the wings of a garg:

1) Are there bones inside the wings? Or instead of bones cartilage? Or anything else?

2a) If the answer to 1) is the former, does it mean then that the wings are something like a second pair of arms?
b) But that doesn't seem to be right, because nothing on the wings looks unflexible, in especially when they are "not in use" and laid round the body, or have I just not looked carefully enough to notice anything else?

3) Their wings don't seem to be very thin and light, but more thick and heavy. Is this to prevent major damages like a big hole? Has it any other advantages?

(BTW: How's my English? Because I'm not sure that everything is understandable)

Greg responds...

1. I assume there are bones. But I'm no biologist.

2a. Yes. Most gargoyles have seven limbs (including the tail).

2b. I'm not sure what you mean here.

3. I'm not sure I can confirm your premise here.

But your English seems pretty good to me, generally.

Response recorded on August 30, 2001

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Lord Sloth writes...

I think you said that the loch ness clan live in caves and Grottos. If you didn't, then sorry. If you did, how do the gargs get their solor energy? The same for Demona's clan in 1020 who spent a lot of time in caves.

Greg responds...

Heat absorbtion. (Like I know.)

Response recorded on August 30, 2001

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Kelly L Creighton/Kya White Sapphire writes...

Just got done reading the Greg Weisman section of the archives. Time for a LONG rant.

I wanted to tell you at the gathering, but I forgot. which angers me to no end, because i went on and on about this at work for months before i left for LA. in awakenings, elisa makes the number three on her hand. you said how odd it was that the japanese animation studio had her make three in that particular way, with the thumb, index and middle fingers. the reality is that thats the PROPER way in AMERICAN SIGN LANGUAGE to make the number three. they must have looked it up to see "how americans do it." what people usually do as three, with the thumb holding down the pinky, is actually "six" in sign language. and the thumb holding down the index finger is "nine" (with the middle being eight and the ring finger being seven.) a 'hitchikers thumb' is ten. :)

speaking of awakenings, the "nice mask" comment isnt in the "movie". i was mad. i pouted all night last night.

re: goliath and elisa needing help to have a child
technically, theyre closely related enough that they prolly could have a child. that child would not be fertile tho. a Stallion and a female donky can have a hinny, a Mare and a male donky can have a mule, but neither a mule nor a hinny can have offspring. though, in your book, a garg and a human may be way farther from eachother than a donkey and a horse. despite the fact that donkeys and horses arent nearly as related as they look.

I know you dont think this way, but humor me for a second. if you were an animal, what would you be? Tore (my fiancee) would be a polarbear. he likes red meat. he likes the cold. he LOOKS like a polarbear, even when hes not overweight. he acts like one. people give him the respect of one. and he's all white collar(fur) on the surface, and blends in with the crowd(snow) but underneath hes jet black(covered in tattoos, a closet freak ;P) it took a long LONG time to find an animal for me. im nocturnal. im cute. im mostly herbiverous, but not completely. i like florida's hot and muggy weather. i sleep a lot. we went through many rodent and lemur species before settling on flying squirrel.

on the topic of what names mean (oh wise one :) my full name is Kelly Leigh Creighton. Kelly started as a gaelic name, i think spelled calleach, pronounced ka-LEE-ack(phlem sound here). Then the irish clan the O'Kellys took the name. and they were a big factor in the liberation of ireland. so it became fashionable to name boys Kelly. then in 1958 i believe, there was an actress named Kelly. so it became okay to name girls kelly. which is more the case now. anyway, Kelly means "warrior of the king" or "female warrior" Leigh is an english word still used today (in britan) which means "meadow". my last name, Creighton, started as a scottish name, and then spread to england and ireland, where it took many diversion such as Crichton, etc. my family roots have been traced to scotland. it means "near the creek." so fully, my name means "Female warrior of the King, in the meadow near the creek." i always wonder if i will find a meadow near a creek with some unmarked grave in it or something.

along the same track, have you seen the gargoyles code? its a long string of letters and symbols that, if you know how to read them, describes one's character. part of the code is for real life, and asks how obsessed you are. the maximum obsession is defined by one who would be willing to be a test subject for a mutagen that might make them a gargoyle. im one of those silly people. are you? doubt it... (thats not meant to be offensive, i just doubt youre that kind of person :)

at the gathering, while talking about all the spinoffs, specifically i think you were talking about 2198, you said "and its really sad that im still working on this." actually, i dont think its sad at all. im pretty happy about it. because it really is something special. and we all believe in you. its pretty cool that youre as obsessed with your own shows as your fans.

i also recently learned that you dont drink, and think smoking is pretty haneous (sp?). that rules. its nice to see other people out there like that, not just in the fandom too. its really rare these days. not that i didnt respect you before, but i really respect that, and in a way, appreciate it.

i read about how you fell out of the bunkbed when you were little. that reminded me of my bunkbet gymnastics. i hate using the ladder, since i can never find it when im sleep walking. (i sleepwalk a LOT). so ive trained myself to grab the bar on the side of the bunk, or if there isnt one, the lip underneat the bunk, and flip over the side to land on the floor. thing is, if i lose my balance i land on the edge of the bunk below, instead of the floor, and wake whoever is sleeping there. usually, though, since im sleepwalking, i wont remember that i did it unless they confront me about it in the morning. so no guilt ;P

on sleepwaling: i have recently discovered that any time someone tells me im dreaming, i get very angry at them and insist im not, even if i am. i have instructed my parents (specifically my mom, my dad did it anyway because he thought it was funny) to just agree with me, pretend i make sense, and send be back off to bed. o_O

ive wanted to tell you about my religion for some time, but ive been a little nervous to, because its a touchy subject with some people. but after reading your views, i feel like i can at least give you a short version, and it shouldnt be too bad. basically i believe that there are an infinite number of universes, all connected by a void. everything is true, in some universe or another. and some things can travel thru the void into other universes. so basically all religions are true, because there are an infinite number of universes. i simply choose to pray to an alternate set of dieties than the normally accepted ones. which isnt to say i put any less faith in God or Budda (sp?), etc. I just choose not to pray to him/them. which i think this kind of falls into your beliefs anyway, since you belive in alternate universes, and that all things are true. which is basically what my religion preaches. so youre Raptorian and didnt even know it ;P

theres actually scientific evidence coming to light to support the "theory" of alternate universes. cold dark matter, morphic fields, time as a fourth dimension, the possible non-existance of time... its fascinating. this thing that i knew all along is now getting proved by science. basically, the theory of cold dark matter states that there is a force in the universe that is more powerful than gravity. but it only partially exists in this universe, so it is hard to see and study. and most of the force it exerts is exerted in another universe, so were not even getting the full effect. morphic feilds is the theory that everything in the universe is connected by lines of force. this explains why when an atom is split, and two electrons go zinging away from eachother at high speed, one can look at the north/south orientation of one electron and know that the other electron is the exact same. because they are connected. which is why dogs know when their owner is comming home, even if the spouse does not. which is why people can sometimes instinctively know that something is wrong with a loved one, even if miles away. why twins, if separated, can still sense what the other is doing, even if they dont have a twin. why sometimes we can predict the future, or get flashes from the past. morphic fields trancend even time. there is also a theory that states that time is the fourth dimension. basically, since were three dimensional creatures, we can see the EDGE of things in TWO dimensions (meaning you can see the edge of a planar surface), and we can COMPREHEND things in the THIRD dimension (you cant see the edge of a 3D object, a coke can for example, the edge curves away from you and you cant see it. technically, it has no edge). fourth dimensional beings could see our EDGE, and comprehend the fourth dimension. we, as 3d creatures, can only measure what we think is the passing of time. a two dimensional creature could only measure the third dimension. of course there is another theory, who's own creator admits that its just a neat theory he came up with and doenst actually believe in. he said that maybe time doesnt exist at all. maybe we think time passes, just like when we watch a movie we think the pictures are going by, but its just many still frames. as in there is an alternate universe for each second in time. and we only think there is motion because at each second, we have the memories of all the things that have passed before. its an interesting theory, but im more inclined to think of time as the fourth dimension.

anyway, im done rambling for the night. please feel free to comment as you see fit, or not at all :)

Greg responds...

Whew...

Random responses...

I think that humans and gargoyles are biologically much further apart than horses and donkeys.

I already AM an animal. Homo Sapiens, I believe.

Even after your explanation, I'm still not sure what the Gargoyles code is. But no, I wouldn't want to be a mutagen guinea pig.

And I was being a bit fecetious and/or self-deprecating (given my audience) at the Gathering when I said it was 'sad'. Obviously, I enjoy still thinking about the property.

I do think smoking is a fairly heinous and shockingly stupid habit. Though I generally try not to preach. As for alcohol, I see nothing wrong with drinking in moderation -- for most people. Unfortunately, I'm not one of those people.

I'm Jewish. And a bit pagan. I believe in the religion of the Three Musketeers: "All for one, and one for all." Or something like that.

Time has also been referred to as the fourth dimension in the sense that it spots any point. You can spot a point in three dimensions and still miss it if you don't also measure it's location in time.

Response recorded on August 30, 2001

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Kelly L Creighton/Kya White Sapphire writes...

another science question (can you tell i have no life?)
i had a discussion with my biology teacher, specifically regarding the effects of a mutagen. she said it was actually possibly toalter the DNA of a creature, but the metamorphosis would take a long time, since it would only happen as the individual cells divided. some cells divide frewquently, like skin cells. bone cells do not. so basically the metamorphosis would have taken a lot longer. except im assuming sevarius would have taken this into account, and added a stimulant. sorry, not really a question, im just going on and on and on at this point ;P

Greg responds...

Stimulant works for me. Not that I take them, of course.

Response recorded on August 24, 2001

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matt writes...

ok, now that we know for a fact that "nearly amphibious" gargoyles exist, and in Scotland no less, it causes me again to wonder about the aquatic-looking garg of the Avalon clan seen in "Ill met by Moonlight" i swear he looks half gargoyle half fish. he doesn't seem to have the Manta Ray wings described in the Loch Ness clan, but he does have aquatic looking wings (webbed and scaled and the like). he has large fishy looking gills on the sides of his neck, and he has webbed digits! so, would any of the Loch Ness gargs resemble this aquatic gargoyle or are they totally different races of gargoyle?

on a related note, i find it really interesting, but confounding that three distinct races of gargoyles live on the same island, and have for generations! its strange cuz you'd think that races so different from each other would be more geographically seperated, but there they are. and its also interesting how Japanese and Guatemalan gargs look more similar to Wyvern gargs than English do, and perhaps Loch Ness too.

Greg responds...

Once upon a time, this world more or less belonged to the gargoyles. Until man started using tools (stone or iron or bronze age) gargoyles were evolutionarily superior than most other species.

Tough as hell, and largely tireless when awake.

Tasteless and uninteresting when asleep.

Intelligent.

Familial, territorial and loyal to each other (largely).

If you go back far enough -- long before 994 -- gargoyles were everywhere. The evolutionary cosmetic differences are not recent.

I've gotten some flack for my 'chameleon gene' theory. But that's all it was. Maybe a better explanation is simply time. And the ability to still mate despite minute cosmetic genetic differrences.

Hopefully, that explains both diversion locally and similarities globally. You are seeing three surviving clans on the British Isles that each survived for a distinct and unusual reason. But they are the three that survived out of many, many.

As to the specifics of the question in your first paragraph, well (a) I do not specifically remember the gargoyle of which you speak, and (b) as usual, I do not want to tie the hands of eventual artists by committing to something here and now.

Response recorded on August 23, 2001

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Kelly L Creighton/Kya White Sapphire writes...

1. there is a big difference in the styles of gargs the animation and gargs the comic. notice that the animated gargs have solid hands and feet, with hardened toes and fingers, and in the comics they actually have CLAWS. i can attribute this to the fact that the comic version would be much harder to animate. so, ignoring the out-of-universe explination, which do you prefer, the animated style or the comic style?

my personal opinion- i prefer the animated style. maybe because it came first. maybe because it separates gargs from humans more. maybe because its easier to draw. *shrug*

2. we havent seen them, again because of the obvious irritation in trying to animate them, but do you imagien that theyre are striped and spotted gargoyles? (okay, before I corrected the typos that was stripped and spitted. lol)

Greg responds...

1. Prefer animated versions for obvious reasons. Nevertheless, it was little old me that encouraged the comic company (among other licensees) to do their own interpretations of the characters. What works in animation visually, doesn't necessarily make for the best, well, whatever. Plus you want to give artists a measure of freedom.

2. Not ruling it out.

Response recorded on August 23, 2001

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Kelly L Creighton/Kya White Sapphire writes...

oh, heres one. someone asked about how much Demona could bench. you gave a smartass response. without giving specific numbers, i had always assumed gargs could basically bench twice the poundage as a human of similar mass. again that goes back to the "gargs are made out of different stuff than humans are" theory. please comment? *expecting smartass response*

Greg responds...

I'm not good with numbers. It's more of an intuitive thing, deciding what she (or any of them) can or cannot do.

Response recorded on August 22, 2001

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Kelly L Creighton/Kya White Sapphire writes...

o.O im a little miffed that im spending so much time in the archives, and yet ppl are still asking questions that are RIGHT HERE... yeesh. sorry if im being annoying asking so many questions, im just in the mood. SO...

1. I noticed that hudson is the only wyvern garg with a scottish accent. why dont the other gargs have one? all four guatamalen gargs have 'guatamalen' accents.

2. the bushido gargs look japanese. the slanted eyes and general face shape, for instance. would you attribute this to perhaps "external forces of the area" forcing both gargs and humans to develop similar facial traits? or something else?

Greg responds...

1. "Ever" is such a big word.

2. Uh, sure. Just an opinion.

3. got me...

Response recorded on August 21, 2001

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Kelly L Creighton/Kya White Sapphire writes...

oh look, Im at it agian, with yet more science questions (beware, im going thru the smartass archive next ;P)

1. can gargs eyes EVER turn a different color than white or red? i hope so.

2. do all garg eggs look like the wyvern clan's, i.e. purple speckly? (i know youre colorblind, but just give me your opinion :)

3. this stems from a conversation MANY moons ago on IRC, where a large group of fans were trying to decide some garg physiology. we speculated that:
a. they must have bones made of a stronger, lighter material than ours
b. same with muscle, since muscle is so HEAVY
d. perhaps instead of being carbon based with iron blood, they could be based on some other element, with another metallic blood. octopi have copper based blood. its green. it doesnt carry oxygen very well, so they get tired very easily. maybe there is something that works the other way :)

Greg responds...

1. "Ever" is such a big word.

2. Uh, sure. Just an opinion.

3. got me...

Response recorded on August 21, 2001

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Kelly L Creighton/Kya White Sapphire writes...

just another FYI

I was watching discovery, learning about human relationships. a theory says that way back when humans were hunter/gatherers, a pair would mate, and stay together long enough for the offspring to no longer "burden" its parents. then the pair would split, and find new mates, therefore keeping a large range of genetic possibilities.

the theory further stats that modern humans seem to have kept this behavior somewhat, which explains the trouble so many humans have staying with a life mate.

another part of the theory says that humans generally have three marriages: the first for sex, the second for children, the third for comanionship.

so gargoyles combine all three into one. cool. but again, that hurts their genetic diversity :)

Greg responds...

I suppose, but only when you put it that way. If humans are only mating once for kids, then they are no better off.

Response recorded on August 21, 2001

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Kelly L Creighton/Kya White Sapphire writes...

again, looking thru the science archives, someone asked
"3. *DO* the other gargs need to shave? "
and you responded
"3. Not Angela. "

does that mean gargoyles grow ONLY facial and head hair? no underarm hair or leg hair for females to shave? or do they grow such hair, and not shave because theyre not under the same "social obligation" (i can think of no other term for it) as human females?

Greg responds...

MAN, Kelly!!!!!!

I was only talking about facial hair. I have (currently) no comment on the rest.

Response recorded on August 15, 2001

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LeFay182 writes...

I haven't seen the show like a million years. But, I still remember loving it. I just had one question; Do Gargoyles eggs turn to stone in the day time? Thanks

Greg responds...

The shell is permanently stone like after the first day. The insides transform back and forth like gargs.

Response recorded on August 15, 2001

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Kelly L Creighton/Kya White Sapphire writes...

I was just reading the "scientific posts" and Im wondering about something. You make several references to "whateveryone considers to be dinosaurs" versus "what are really dinosaurs." so lets classift: there are the protomammals, which include demitridon (which Im not sure if im spelling that right), the sprawling legged reptile-esque creature with the large sail on it's back. Dinosaurs didnt actually evolve anywhere near demitridon's line, as he eventually became rodents (or so say scientists, due to the structre of its skull). there are also the "swimming reptiles" which lived at the time of the dinosaurs, and the "flying reptiles" which also lived at that time. SO, given that Ive just split the group into its perspective parts, where to gargates fall in? protomammals? something else that wasnt actually a DINOSAUR, but existed before the dinos, and from which dinos didnt actually evolve?
(okay, you found my other obsession, i give in.)

Greg responds...

No, I give.

Look, I'm not a scientist. I'd need to research this in much greater detail than I currently have to answer this in the kind of detail you all seem to want.

I haven't yet. Sorry.

Response recorded on August 15, 2001

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Kelly L Creighton/Kya White Sapphire writes...

Im sure someone must have asked this before, but there is no "stone sleep" section in the archive, so:

do gargoyles dream when in the stone sleep?

Greg responds...

Yes.

Response recorded on August 15, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

Did the gargoyles contributed to the mermaid legends considering that there are actually amphibious gargoyles?

Greg responds...

There are no literally amphibious gargoyles. But in answer to your question, maybe.

Response recorded on August 14, 2001


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