From here, with one quick bound I circle behind and lightly claw the fellow's wings. These carefully folded wings, when clawed just so, are readily disarranged, revealing a lightly colored underlayer, fine like Yoshino paper. These fellows, even in summer, take great pains to adorn themselves in double-layered attire. At this moment, the fellow invariably twists his long neck to look behind. Once in a while one turns to confront me, but for the most part, it's just the head that turns. He seems to be waiting, watching for my next move. A prolonged standoff provides me no sport, so after some time I deliver a swat. Any sensible mantis, after one good swat, makes ready to flee. It's only the ignorant savage, hell-bent on standing his ground, who chooses fight over flight. When faced with a savage foe, I counter his advance, in no uncertain terms, with a well-timed flick, sending him airborne a ways. To those who duly retreat, however, I'm not entirely unsympathetic. I break off and dash round the trees a time or two. My mantis friend effects his escape, but only proceeds a very short distance. Aware that he's outmatched, and aware that resistance is futile, all he can do is zig and zag, helter skelter. I'm on him like glue, though, and his distress only builds, often to end in a flury of flailing wings. The mantis's wings, following the form of its neck, are long and slender, but from what I'm told they're strictly ornamental. Like human study of English, French, or German languages, they're of no practical use whatsoever. It follows, of course, that this final flourish of deadwood wings in no way thwarts my advance. In flailing its wings in fact, the mantis does little more than drag them about on the ground. At this point it's really somewhat pitiable, but I need my exercise, so what can one do. I take the liberty of rushing ahead and blocking its path.