Tuesday, September 2, 2008

That's Not A Panda!

Release the pigeons! We have another freaking panda!

Over there at Zoo Atlanta (Correct. Zoo Atlanta. Not The Atlanta Zoo. Zoo Atlanta. Go figure. Morons.) Mr. and Mrs. Panda, otherwise known as Lun Lun and Yang Yang are the new proud panda parents of a baby panda with no name because they don't know the sex of the baby panda just yet. I'm surprised that they knew it was a baby panda to begin with. A baby panda does not look like a panda at all. It looks like an unfinished mistake of some sort. And while I couldn't find a picture of this particular baby panda, I learned that most of them look the same. Thus, I figured that I could use a picture of any ol' newborn panda or, in this case, pandas and it would be just like the real thing. And the real thing looks nothing like a panda. Behold and trust me! Two newborn pandas, I swear!

Oh, my God, what the hell are those?! They're like little fuzzy penises with legs! Holy crap! (Why did I make that so BIG?! I don't want to see that!) Those can't be pandas! THIS is a panda:

Those things above look nothing at all like pandas. Penises with legs, that's what I'm seeing. And it's starting to frighten me. (Why do I keep looking at it?! Make it go away!)

Apparently, when a baby panda is born, it is no bigger than a stick of butter and weighs about as much as well. The panda gestation period is quite short, between 140 and 160 days. That's only about 4-5 months, which makes it a little easier to understand why the Little Leggy Penis Brothers up there look the way that they do. 4-5 months is not very long to grow an entirely different creature within your uterus or womb or pouch or stylish shoulder bag or whatever pandas have. It'd be like cooking a three minute egg for a minute and a half. Actually, it would be just like that because in both cases, what you end up with is something that is just SO gross!

Apparently, Lun Lun had to be artificially inseminated as Yang Yang had no interest in providing the natural insemination. It seems that pandas are rather particular when it comes to choosing a mate. You know, there's only about 1,500 of them left on this planet; they really shouldn't be so darned choosy. And while I know that Lun Lun did receive the sperm artificially, I am blissfully unaware of the particulars of the procedure! I am not, however, unaware of how they figure out of the creature is pregnant after all of the sperm implanting has occurred. Just like with humans (although hopefully in a different setting) they do an ultrasound. Behold! An ultrasound on a pregnant panda!

All of this has been so, so, SO much more than I really wanted to see and or know about the panda pregnancy process. (My world is a world in which things do not grow inside of other beings like an alien that is maturing inside of a select host up until the time which the creature has matured to the point of being forcibly expelled out of the host uterus in an extremely painful process akin to that of shoving a pot roast through one's nostril.) And since the little cub is so small, the fine folks over there at the zoo with the ridiculous name, Zoo Atlanta, didn't even know for sure if Lun Lun was preggers until Thursday. And out popped the Little Leggy Penis (the LLP) on Sunday!

But hold on! Now there's a problem. It would seem that Zoo Atlanta has turned off the feed from the Panda Cam (I swear). According to a one Simone Griffin, the Zoo Atlanta spokesperson, "...they wanted to more closely watch the tiny, hairless cub based on the behavior of the cub and its mother, Lun Lun, in the zoo's birthing den." So they shut off the Panda Cam and plunked the LLP down in an incubator. So they say.

Hey, you saw the pictures just like I did! That little panda is tiny! That big panda is not! Personally, I'm not so sure they should be allowing Lun Lun around the LLP until it stops looking like an LLP at the very earliest. She could squash it without even trying. She could think it's a bug and swat it into a panda pancake without really trying. That's not really a zoo attraction many would flock to.

But pandas, in general, ARE the sort of zoo attraction many, many folks flock to. If you want some folks to flock, get yourself a panda. For some reason, Americans love the damned panda. They just can't get enough of the panda. Panda, panda, panda. (I think it's that black and white fur pattern they've got going on that Americans are drawn to. What's another animal that Americans just love to death? That's right, the killer whale. Willy. Shamu. Doesn't matter the name, if you're an American, it is unlikely that you've made it through your childhood without having a killer whale jump through a hoop five feet in front of you and then shower you with water when he splashes back into his Tank O' Captivity. Americans just love a tricky orca.)

And flock the folks did to Zoo Atlanta to get a glimpse of the yet to be named panda-panda. Some of the children even brought along little stuffed panda toys with them to play with while they watched the panda cub on the Panda Cam. Those kids are going to be two things. Disappointed and confused. "Mommy, that's not a panda." "Why are we looking at a rat?" "What's a leggy penis?" They did not get dragged to the zoo to look at something was not panda-like. Yep, some very sad children leaving Zoo Atlanta, I'm sure of it.

Pandas also always have the repetitive name. Ling-Ling. Lun-Lun. Yang-Yang. Why do they have to have Chinese names at all? I mean, we're raising them. Can't we name them what we want? Why can't the Chinese part of their name be like the middle panda name and then they get an American first name? Maybe it would help me warm up to the whole panda craze if I had an opportunity to go and fawn over Steve, the Giant Panda and his cousins Gary and Sue. It might not, but you have to start somewhere and naming the panda Steve would be a great place to start.

But here's a real treat for you! Below is the video of the nameless panda-panda being born. Panda birth! It's fairly short, considering it's the emergence of a brand new creature into the world, and runs a little less than two minutes. It's not disgusting. It's not gross. You don't see fluids or placentas or any of that stuff flying around. It IS loud at times. And it is also hilarious.

Weird, eh? I thought so too. I also thought it was hilarious. After Lun Lun shoots that creature out, she appears to be shocked, just shocked that it is what it is. She sort of jumped back there like, 'Holy s***!! What the hell is that?! Where'd that come from?! Usually I'm just crapping bamboo! I've never had this happen! Yang Yang, dammit! Get over here!"

Look, as much as I don't understand the fascination with the panda, I really do hope the LLP panda is going to be OK. I also hope it grows some damn fur pretty quickly. It's going to be scaring the neighbors if it's walking around looking like that for very long.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

>>>Pandas also always have the repetitive name. Ling-Ling. Lun-Lun. Yang-Yang. Why do they have to have Chinese names at all? I mean, we're raising them. Can't we name them what we want?

How about call it Jason? Or Bush?