Random Thought of the Day: Animal News

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There have been a few news stories that have caught my attention during the last week.

First, we WILFREDO LEE / APhave the story of a Florida golfer who was attacked by an alligator. Fortunately, he was not seriously hurt, and it doesn’t sound like the whole thing turned out to be that big of a deal. I bring it up here, though, to point out once again that you have to be really, really dumb to be attacked by an alligator. Seriously. They are not very aggressive creatures, and will only come after you if you make yourself a very inviting target. In this case, the guy ignored a “Beware of Alligator” sign, Big penguinsand walked right up to the edge of the pond and stuck his arm in. So, props to the gator on this one.

Up second is the story of giant penguin fossils found in South America.  I’m not actually a huge fan of penguins – as animals go, they’re no alligators – but I’m always intrigued by giant prehistoric versions of common animals.  Unfortuantely, the article doesn’t say exactly how big they were. Piecing together clues from my own research, though, I’ve managed to estimate their size relative to the Sears Tower in Chicago.

Finally – I found this one thanks to Conservapedia – comes news of the latest struggle in the right-to-life wars: chimeras. As I understand it, this latest scientific develpoment has the right-to-life movement in quite a bind; they’re against chimeras, but once a chimera embryo is created, they’re opposed to destroying it. Makes sense, I guess, as long as you’re completely unwilling to see the logical limit of pro-life rhetoric.

But what I really want to know, and what the article doesn’t tell us, is what kind of animal/human hybrid scientists want to create. This is basic reporting, people! You have to name the animal! Otherwise, it might be easy to get the impression that there aren’t really any solid plans to create these things in the first place and that the whole thing is a fake controversy designed to scare the faithful into opposing stem-cell research in particular and biological research in general.

But, I guess we’ll see. I’m hoping for turtles, personally.

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18 responses »

  1. I’m doubting the randomness of this thought. The carefully crafted subtle humor calls its random veracity into question.

    That penguin picture has me rolling….

  2. I’ve managed to estimate their size relative to the Sears Tower in Chicago.

    Christ, could you imagine those things roaming around town? Rolling around in their own shit all day, making squawking noises, waking everybody up. Then they lay an egg the size of Epcot Center. If there’s already emperor penguins, what would those be? Galactic Lord Penguins?

    I’m hoping for turtles, personally.

    Yeah, four of them. And then a rat. Followed by a rhinoceros and a warthog.

  3. Speaking of Epcot center…i’ll be there in a scant 4 months…hardly a day goes by that I can’t think of vacation. I need to win the lottery or something.

  4. I’m doubting the randomness of this thought. The carefully crafted subtle humor calls its random veracity into question.

    Really? Because this is the most random one I’ve done, I think. Penguins the size of the Sears Tower? That doesn’t seem random?

    Speaking of Epcot center…i’ll be there in a scant 4 months…hardly a day goes by that I can’t think of vacation.

    Man, that is hard. Four months? I don’t think I could wait that long. Good thing I don’t have to…

  5. Yeah, four of them. And then a rat. Followed by a rhinoceros and a warthog.

    For some reason, this took a while to sink in. Got it now, though. Bravo.

  6. I did watch the cartoon and play the game AND collect the archie comics…somehow they didn’t register in my psyche. Maybe I blocked them out…I am the weakest link. I’ll do the TMNT walk of shame now

  7. You are forgiven, I guess. Just as long as you don’t start wondering who Krang is next.

    When are you going to Disney World, by the way? We’re going in the last week of September. Should be fun.

  8. Just as long as you don’t start wondering who Krang is next.

    …..Whistling…hands in pockets…kicking the can…

    First week of November. I’ve only been once before (4 years ago) at the same time of year. It seemed to be perfect weather – not too hot, past hurricane season – and the crowds were light. We are taking the kids this time…having deemed them old enough to enjoy & remember the trip.

    I’m considering making an appeal to former contributor Mr. Stroup for any advice or “secrets” he can lend…though I don’t know if his parting was amicable or not?

  9. Cool. I’ll try hiding something so that you can find it when you’re there. It’ll be like Frequency, except without the time travel.

    I have some tips, I’ve been there a lot.

    As for the kids, fair warning: they probably won’t accept them at the kennel, so you’ll probably have to take them with you into the park. In that case, please don’t be a spoilsport and insist on taking the ferry to the Magic Kingdom instead of the monorail from the parking lot just because the line is shorter. My parents did this when I was a kid and it was always very deflating way to start the day. Of course, as I’ve grown older, I realize how fortunate I was to be going to Disney World so much in the first place, and I feel nothing but love and gratitude for my parents, but I didn’t see it that way when we were on the damn ferry.

    Also, you’d think that The Haunted Mansion would be very scary for small kids, and that Snow White wouldn’t be, but I think the opposite is true (seriously). Snow White freaked me out as a kid, but the Mansion never did except for the first part of it.

    And take it from me: if you want to eat at any of the fancy table-service restaurants, make reservations NOW. We got shut out of Le Cellier in Canada, had to settle for lunch at The Coral Reef, and were forced to accept a 10:20PM reservation at Cap’n Jacks (in Downtown Disney).

  10. Cinderella’s Royal Table was completely BOOKED for breakfast!!! Sheesh…I had to settle for lunch. Waited too long… But I was able to grab the Family Magic Tour AND the Hoop-Dee-Doo revue …

    Any good lunchtime recommendations?

  11. Let’s see, lunch….

    We usually just do counter-service lunches, nothing fancy. We discovered a couple weeks ago that Magic Kingdom changed all their counter-service menus, so I have no idea what’s going on there. Pinocchio’s place is apparently now Italian, the Tomorrowland Terrace is now an Asian noodle place, and Pecos Bill is now hamburgers and hotdogs. Who knows.

    Seems like last time we ate lunch at Epcot, it was at the fish ‘n chips stand in England, but you probably can’t go wrong anywhere in the World Showcase, depending on what the kids are willing to put up with. Or you can go to The Land, where there’s a variety of stuff, like a food court at a mall.

    There’s only one valid lunch option at MGM as far as I’m concerned, and that’s Pizza Planet. It’s nothing like the Pizza Planet in Toy Story, but it’s the principle of the thing, isn’t it? If there’s a Pizza Planet, you eat there, end of story. Go early.

    I’ve only been to Animal Kingdom once, and ate at the barbeque place in Asia. Not bad, but mostly outdoor seating. Overall, it seemed like the Animal Kingdom options were a bit limited.

  12. That reminds me of a restaurant I ate at in Washington D.C. 7 or 8 years ago. It was down some back alley and was completely non-descript out front. Inside it was like stepping into another world. I think it was called Marrakesh and it was genuine Moroccan cuisine. The booths were couches…one table for 6-8 people. You ate with your hands and it was like a 9 course meal. I think it was a 3 hour affair with belly dancing in the middle. Good times…great food

  13. Yeah, the drive-in is a cool concept, but I remember the same thing about the food not being very good. Haven’t been there in 10 years or so, though, so maybe it’s better now.

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