That's just the problem, Leo. There's nothing to block. I found the thing in my hotlink list in the first place, meaning that all my server gave them was the No Hotlinks image. That's two K and change, rather than 50-70K for the real thing. But, exactly as with g### search, the human hotlinker still saw the blasted picture :( (I know because I re-enacted the search. Thumbnail-sized.)
:: detour to verify something ::
Holy ###. Was NOT expecting that. gstatic dot com belongs to g, of course, duh, Dog Bites Man ... but whois claims it's for sale. Any chance they're just making it up?