My fabulous Huddie sent me these wonderful punkins carved with the faces of puppies. It must have taken great patience! Looks like I better get out the knives and start today if I want to do up my brood. The aftermath of all that squash waste will resemble a great pumpkin massacre in my kitchen, I'm sure. Zali and Carmen will assume that all debris are snacks. Just like any other day...
Happy Halloweiners, everybody!
* The artist's name was not included in the email.
...That ends well. This is an update on the adopted baby orangutan I posted from www.zooborns.typepad.com . She just gets cuter by the minute. Warning: If you are diabetic, viewing these images may cause coma.
Two weeks ago we brought you pictures of baby Kali at the Kansas City Zoo.
The little female orangutan had been abandoned by her mother but found
a happy life with new surrogate mom "Jill." Today we check back in on
baby Kali who is reportedly doing great.
People of the Internets: It has come to my attention that many of you are falsely identifying "prairie dogs" as "chipmunks". The video of the Dramatic Chipmunk? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a1Y73sPHKxw It's a prairie dog.
This picture of a chipmunk fighting for his snack with some birds? It's a prairie dog, too.
Tad Arensmeier / Zuma Press
A chipmunk defends his lunch against a gang of
starlings in the St. Louis Zoo in St. Louis,
You'd think some one would know the difference over at the St. Louis Zoo.
Chipmunks are decorated with stripes and spots. They weigh only a few ounces and are common city dwellers.
Prairie dogs live in the southwest in large underground communities. They are quite social, have no racing stripes and weigh up to four pounds.
I felt I must clear up this injustice in honor of my dear sweet ZuZu Petals. A prairie dog makes an excellent pet. She was loving, kind, clean and a lot of fun. She adored company. Upon entering a room, ZuZu would throw her head back and bark a loud, "Uh huh!" Sometimes she would even fall over backwards in her exuberance. I can still see her stretched out on her tummy with her legs flat behind her, propped up on her elbows munching a piece of sweet potato on my stomach.
My grandfather, dad and brother thought it was big fun to go out to one of E.W.'s lakes in Mississippi to spend the day fishing.
Me? Not so much.
Inevitably, I would be dragged out of bed, drenched from head to toe with toxic mosquito spray, forced to wear some nasty ill-fitting clothing, driven out to the edges of the universe and dumped into a bass boat on a dark, muddy lake to cast worms into their fate. In Mississippi. In the Summer. Good times. Good Times.
One this particular day, the gar were swarming the shallow boat, flipping on their backs to display razor sharp rows of shiny teeth. The intimidation worked. I proceeded to whine about returning to civilization. E.W. cleverly proffered a solution to assuage my constant mewing. He suggested a contest between Michael and me. The first of us to catch a ten pound bass, would get twenty dollars.
Now, my grandfather stocked that lake himself every Spring. He knew that the waters were so thick with gar that no Bass, Crappy or Spot could ever dream of achieving such a wondrous girth. We, however, were fooled. It was game on!
Michael hit first, reeling in the largest snapping turtle I have ever seen. As my father realized what it was, he grabbed a paddle and shoved it from the boat. The giant jaws clamped down and left a bite mark as large as my head. He shot it with his pistol. The beast sank to the murky bottom. The gar disappeared for the unexpected feast. The fish started jumping.
I left my first worm dangling from a tree. The second cast landed by some snags. The hit was quick. It was so powerful that instead of reeling the fish to the boat, we were headed towards it. Suspecting that we had nailed the second Snapping Turtle of the day, E.W. moved to the front and assisted. The closer it got to the boat, the more excited my cries. It wasn't a turtle, gar or snake, but a TEN POUND BASS.
My father was so proud, he took me straight to the newspaper in the center of West Point. My other grandfather worked as a pressman there. The photographer took my picture. My giant Bass and I appeared the following day. E.W. reluctantly handed over a ten. The fish was slightly under ten pounds, he said, so I didn't make the bet.
It's amazing what a fish will bite if it gets hungry enough. For example:
These photos appeared in the Wichita Newspaper in 2004. A fisherman saw a ball bobbing erratically in the water. As he approached, he realized that it had a catfish attached to it. He stabbed the basketball with a fishing knife to free the poor creature.
Like E.W. that day, it seems that he had bitten off more than he could chew.
* I checked this story with www.snopes.com . These are not photoshopped. It is real.
The rain has been relentless. Zoe has slept so much that she acted like Rip Van Winkle when she spied the sun for the first time in weeks. She gazed through the picture windows in the bar and stared in amazement at the bright cerulean sky.
"Whaaaa?" Is all her feeble brain could muster.
After her ferocious workouts with Hud in the morning, my daintiest daughter wiles away her days napping in her favorite chair. It's on the sun porch. We call it the "Hair of the Dog Bar", because you will surely be covered in bright red hair should you sit on any surface. It's Zoe's room. She can get a handle on the world from there. She can stand in the enormous windows, intimidating people as they arrive at the front door. She can bark threateningly at any stranger who dares to pass Scytherbolle on the sidewalk. Mostly, she can sleep undisturbed.
Seeing the sunshine perked up the Pappies and we ventured out to see if Zoe would care to join us for some weeding.
I was stunned to see my big red headed girl's face has suddenly become as white as snow. It's as if all the sleeping had aged her overnight. She was losing her color in a mask across her handsome visage. The sun has arrived just in the nick of time to stop the process.
"Come on Old Girl," I roust her. "Time to get our lives back. We've been sleeping far too long."
This little cutie was rejected by her mom, but now she has a new one! I think these photos say it all...
Kalijon, a 5-month old baby orangutan, is now in the care of a foster mother at the Kansas City Zoo after
five months of being nurtured around the clock by humans. Kalijon, seen
here with Jill, her foster mother, was rejected by her mother.
It's nice when nature works its magic on the universe. From www.zooborns.typepad.com .