Volume VII – Issue 342 - March 26, 2007
Please don't forget to read the bulletin board. Enter read from anywhere.
|Argon||Boki gets competition for "The Best Fish".|
Martin, local sea lion, was in the Rose Garden this week at the same time I was there. He seemed to recall meeting me, but I didn't recall meeting him. He's quite friendly and enjoys having a fresh fish tossed to him as a treat. He can also balance things on his nose using his (apparently) strong whiskers to help keep things in place. He enjoys playing catch with a beach ball and after we played catch for a while, I jokingly suggested I toss Andros, local centaur, to Martin and see if he could balance the centaur on his nose. Although Martin was willing, and I was confident I could lift Andros, I wasn't sure I could toss him in the air. Martin noted that it might be possible in the water as things are lighter in the there. I pointed out that centaurs can't breath underwater nor hold their breath as long as a sea lion.
As Martin had indicated he liked fish, I tossed him one and asked, "Is there a special kind of fish you like?"
Martin grinned and replied, "Tasty ones. I told Martin that he would have to meet Boki, loca seagull. Martin asked, "Is he a sea lion too?"
I replied, "Boki is a seagull that visits here. He insists that, and I quote, 'The best fish are for Boki'."
Martin barked in protest amd asked, "What about me?"
I answered, "Well, you can have the best fish too. There are plenty of tasty fish around here."
Martin asked, "But ... how can I get the best fish if they're his?"
To which I said, "Well, they aren't really his any more than they're mine or Andros'. They belong to whoever gets them first."
Martin looked much happier knowing that. No comment from Boki was available at press time.
|Various Sources||Felix Made Honorary Raccoon|
Dateline Monday March 3rd, 8:50am. After determining that it was, indeed, a Happy Raccoon Day, and that it was also a Happy Squirrel Day, Felix, local squirrel, discovered that he wasn't fully compliant in the number of rings on his tail.
"A ringy tail is a happy tail!" proclaimed Royce, Senior raccoon, and proceeded to paint rings around Felix's tail, aided and abetted by Findra, local cetan.
Squirrel tails being what they are, several of the rings seemed to be somewhat squiggly. "I've never met a squirrel that had rings on his tail but lots of animals do. I got a book that shows you," Felix was heard to say.
|Portia (From the bulletin board)||Volunteer Programmers Needed|
I am working with an Organization called Artspots in trying to find a couple of volunteer programmers with experience in Ruby on Rails, though PHP is acceptable.
Artspots is looking for volunteers who can offer 4 hours a week in order to fix up forums, general maintenance, and possible feature development.
|Ceredwyn||Wolves better off here than Alaska|
The Alaskan government (Alaska is a place on a planet called Earth,)has announced a bounty for killing wolves. For every left fore paw of a freshly killed wolf comes a reward of $150. Apparently such draconian measures are needed to protect the moose population, which is supposedly being threatened by the growing number of wolves in that region.
Apart from feeling very fortunate (being a wolf myself) to be living on Spindizzy rather than planet earth, reading all this makes me wonder: what gives mankind the right to behave so 'high and mighty' when it comes to natural affairs? What gives mankind the right to legalise a mass slaughter of wolves? Indeed, 'mass slaughter', because those poor wolves are not just going to be hunted in traditional ways, but are going to be chased down and shot by air planes as well! As many as 180 huntsmen and aerial gunners have already volunteered for the job. Imagine how Spindizzy must seem like a paradise for wolves.
The 18th century philosopher Jean Jacques Rousseau wrote a number of texts about the 'savage' i.e. Non-European peoples. He noticed an obvious difference between the indigenous people of America and Africa, and the Europeans. Namely that the natives of America and Africa were much better capable of dealing with their rough and untamed environment, and the wildlife inhabiting that environment, than the 'weak' European settlers who had to rely on technology and firearms.
Rousseau wrote: “Set a bear, or a wolf, against a robust, agile, and resolute savage, as they all are, armed with stones and a good cudgel, and you will see that the danger will be at least on both sides, and that, after a few trials of this kind, wild beasts, which are not fond of attacking each other, will not be at all ready to attack man, whom they will have found to be as wild and ferocious as themselves.” (From: 'A discourse on the origin and the foundation of the inequality of man')
Rousseau's conclusion was that those 'savages' were much purer and and physically stronger than the civilised Europeans, for they could live in close harmony with nature and still survive. This is the problem mankind is facing right now. The people on earth have become so civilised that they seem to believe they are above nature and can decide over its fate as if they were divines. And at the same time they have become so civilised that they can no longer survive without their precious technology, and need to use guns and air planes to express their self proclaimed divinity over wolves and nature as a whole.
William Horwood, finally, has written a series of books called: 'The wolves of time'. It is a tale about a pack of wolves in the near future, who, after mankind has been abusing his 'divine' power up to the point where the world itself is close to destruction, stand up to mankind and wage war on them. Not to exterminate of oppress them, but to restore the pure harmony that once existed between mankind and nature. Just as Rousseau described his 'noble savages', so should mankind return to its purest form and live in harmony with nature.
I hope Horwood's vision will one day become reality on planet Earth. But for the moment let us be content that Spindizzy is devoid of such 'civilisation', and that man and animal can live in harmony without having to worry about being hunted down for the sake of some regulation programme.
|Patch O'Black||Four-Kolor Kitty: The greatest horse-like but not like a horse heroes!|
If you remember back to my second column, I said that Argon had asked a question I would get to in a later column. Well, Argon, this week we answer the question, "Who was the greatest centaur hero?" Actually, Argon, you actually know quite a bit about the comic book centaurs, as evidenced by your own centaur web-site. It allowed me to brush up on my own knowledge.
I will start with one that is somewhat well-known as a character, but not really as a centaur. I am talking about Comet, the Super-Horse. Comet, in his fictional history, was once a centaur who fell in love with a human woman. He had Circe, the well-known greek witch with a passion of changing men into animals, gave him a potion that was suppose to turn him fully into a human. Instead, it turned him into a horse. He also got the standard package of super powers (flight, invulnerability, super-strength, speed) as well as telepathy.
Also, due to a later magic spell, if a comet passed through the solar system, he would change into a human. As a member of the Legion of Super-Pets (along with Krypto, Streaky (the super-cat), and Beppo the Super-Monkey), he fought crime and, well, invokes a couple of chuckles from comic book fans. Not so much because of the character himself, more that DC seemed to want to have a super-version of everything. He recently was brought back into the modern comic age, with a similar back story, with a few modern twists, but really has never seen much in the way of popularity, I'm afraid.
Speaking of super centaurs, Superman himself became a centaur in a story known as "Whom Gods Destroy", though this is what DC comics calls and "Elseworld" story that doesn't really take place in continuity of the "real" Superman comics. It takes place on a world ruled by the Nazis, added by a Greek god, Adonis. Apparently, Superman was changed into a centaur by the magic of Circe, of course. She just loves to work with centaurs, it seems.
However, my favorite comic centaur is...Horse-boy! I know, I know, centaurs aren't really horses, but that was what he was called! You see, this was back in the Golden Age of comics, and took place in a Wonder Girl story. Now, as opposed to the more recent Wonder Girl characters, this was actually Wonder Woman as a teenager. It seems that, it this particular story, Aphrodite has set the young amazon a challenge. She had to find a proper suitor (well, a boyfriend), which can be tricky on an island only inhabited by women. She first was courted by Mer-Boy (yep, fish tail and all) and BirdBoy (think male harpy), but suddenly, while the first two fought over the young Princess Diana, a handsome young centaur stud showed up. He swept Wonder Girl off her feet, and took her riding on his back. In the end, however, Wonder Girl rejected him, after he displayed a self-centered and egotistical personality. It turns out, however, that the centaur teen was actually just a creation of Aphrodite to see if Wonder Girl could see past his good looks and recognize the shallow person he was. Horse-boy was then returned to nothingness. At least, that's how I remember the story. It appears that tale has turned to nothingness as well, as I searched for evidence of the story so I could post a proper picture from it. I haven't found one bit of evidence of it. Still, I pick Horse-boy, who gave his very existence to serving the greater good!
That's it for this week! Remember to page #mail your suggestions of topics and comic book questions to me, and I'll use them in future columns. See you in the funny pages!
Greetings all, here's your Spindizzy @Action News survey for this week. What are some of the most unusual names you've ever heard about? (For example I once knew a LAWYER named Michael SWINDLER).
|Argon||The Doze Garden|
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