Saturday, November 22, 2008

Stupid Human Tricks, The Chinese Version

You know, it's nice when it's not Americans making headlines for doing stupid things, for a change.

I'm talking about this story, but really, there's no need to go there. I'll be quoting from it extensively here because A) it's about pandas, and B) there's just so much great stuff in it that I can't resist it. It's right up there with the Pelican Story. And you know me--when there's a good Animal VS. Human tale, I'm all over it. That's my vow to you.

First of all, thank you for this stellar headline: Panda Bites Student Seeking A Hug. There is no freaking way I'm not reading this story. Half of me is hoping that it's not a real panda, but some minimum wage-earner dressed in a fake fur suit doing on-site promo work for a Chinese restaurant who is being mauled by some drunken college frat boy on a bender. Okay.

But no. "A college student in southern China was bitten by a panda after he broke into the bear's enclosure hoping to get a hug," says's source. Further, "the student scaled the fence surrounding the panda, named Yang Yang," a park employee said. How many of you--right now--are saying "Why isn't this kid in class or in his dorm room studying? What was he doing at a zoo?"

"Yang Yang was so cute and I just wanted to cuddle him. I didn't expect he would attack," the 20-year-old student, surnamed Liu, said. And this kid is in college? What is he majoring in, underwater basketweaving? The history of Hello Kitty? What the hell kind of logic is that? Is this kid from Oz? His parents better do him a big favor and keep him away from the pretty, pretty kitty-cats with the fluffy heads. Or the big, brown teddy bears!

And now, to the question that we all have been asking all along and that, if this were an American newsreport, would have already been cleared up: "The student was pale as he was taken away by medics but appeared clear-headed," a park employee said. Which is the Chinese equivalent of the American "alcohol did not appear to be a factor."

To which I reply, then what the hell is his excuse?

But here's one of my favorite parts: "Yang Yang, who was flown to Guilin last year from Sichuan province, was behaving normally on Saturday and did not seem to suffer any negative psychological effects, the park employee said." I'm telling you--the Chinese are all about their pandas! Remember, there are 1.3 billion Chinese, but only between 700-1000 pandas. Which do you think is more important, some idiotic 20-year old who thinks he can hug a freaking wild animal or a precious endangered symbol of an entire country and valuable link of an ecosystem already threatened by earthquakes, climate change, and habitat encroachment? Duh.

Finally, I love the common sense of the Chinese. No constant threat of litigation there. Witness the testimony of the park employee when asked if they would be adding yet more signage warning people not to climb in and try to hug the pandas: "We cannot make it like a prison. We already have signs up warning people not to climb in," he said. "There are no fences along roads but people know not to cross if there are cars. This is basic knowledge."

Well, maybe for most Chinese. For Americans...we still put warnings on our sleep aids that they "may cause drowsiness." Sigh.


  1. Seriously! Seriously?
    I mean for goodness sake- some strange man walks up and tries to hug me, I'm not going to look too kindly on it. A bear??

  2. As soon as I saw the picture, I knew it was about that article. Apparently it's not just Americans that are really, really stupid.

  3. Anonymous9:54 AM

    "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."

    ---Albert Einstein

    What's really incredible: even a five-year-old would have had the sense not to do that.

  4. Dern, that's funny. Especially the way you write things up. Love your way with words.
    I want to know where stupid student got bitten.

  5. Anonymous8:29 PM

    "Then what the hell is his excuse?"

    Ha ha ha ha. I made The Man read this too.

  6. Funny, but somehow to me, nothing beats the idiocy of people who climb in with POLAR bears and get mauled and eaten. I mean, except for the Coke bear, polar bears aren't even fake-cute and cuddly, right? Idiots.

  7. Anonymous11:12 AM

    Same goes for Koala bears. People think they're all friendly, but just look at those claws!

  8. apathy lounge--you know, jared and i have this discussion re: koalas an awful lot. i've researched koalas, and i've never found a citation of them being vicious.

    j.@jj--not the big ones, anyhow! but remember when i had a picture of "Flock" (who I renamed "Elinor") in my blog and sidebar when she was little? she was darn cute and cuddly. I used to keep up with her at the German website and they posted film clips of her with her handlers. She loved being cuddled...for a short while. Once she got big, it was NOT a good idea!

    V-grrrl--Oh, good! I love it when the Dept. is a shared pleasure.

    Mary G.--oh, thanks. I provided a link in my post to's article, but i think it said on his arms and legs. might have done more good if it bit his head. (yikes, was that mean?)

    Ortizzle--i'm so glad you're back! and that einstein knew what he was talking about, huh?

    mikey--you and i read the same stuff ALL THE TIME! i almost never scoop you.

    PotU--excellent point, my dear! most of us wouldn't do that to a PERSON, then why would we do it to A WILD, CAGED ANIMAL? how did this yutz get into a college?

  9. I was on the exact opposite of you when I saw this headline. I thougt, "What fucking idiot would try and hug a panda? No way am I reading that."

  10. By the way, I absolutely love Ingrid.

  11. Nina--so, I got you to read ABOUT it. LOL. I love Ingrid, too. What a fantastic bunny! Normally, I'm not a white bunny fan--too common--but that FACE! and can you not almost FEEL that fur?

  12. PS NINA--make sure to read the Tie Report for Nov. 24.

  13. I saw that headline and didn't read it either. I don't know about that guy, but I think a lot of kids do this kind of stuff just to do something wild and/or get publicity like all the weirdos that make the crazy (and often dangerous) YouTube videos.

  14. shirley--I agree re: the youtube thing. now, everyone can get his/her 15 minutes on the internet, and who knows whether or not that can parlay into something bigger?

  15. OMG, you are FAMOUS. I just opened my email and this article was there.\General-Entertainment\20081126\TV-Williams-Ties.xml&cat=entertainment&subcat=&pageid=1

    I think I might still have an email comment from you in my delete file. I am one degree removed from totally knowing someone famous.

    Be still, my heart.

  16. Mrs. Who--LOL. Hardly famous. You're very flattering.

  17. I just posted on the Tie Report, but had to post here, too. Sooo cool that you and the Tie Report got this wonderful write-up!!! Thanks to Mrs. Who for letting us know! I am tickled pink for you, Nance, but a bit disappointed that BW knows about the Tie Report, but still picks a high percentage of unworthy ties. Obviously, he is not taking Oprah's advice to heart ... that "when you know better, you do better" ... sigh. I do wonder if all the ties we really, really like are the ones that Mrs. BW purchased for him. LOL Anyway, big kudos, Nance!! I bet your students will get a kick out of this article and your newfound fame. ;-)

  18. shirley--oh NO. if i have my way about it, my students will NEVER EVER find out about any of this. think about it.


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