This post has nothing to do with the stated purpose of my blog. It is simply pandaring to the reality that my "audience" consists of a few family and friends...who know me too well to be impressed by my more serious writing anyway. Thus the following:
Scene: Woodley Park Zoo in DC. Me, Helani, and Juli, moseying along the Asia Trail in pursuit of our prey. Having braved all variety of endangered animals and signs warning darkly of poachers and extinction, having resisted the siren song of the Panda Cafe - having, in fact, preserved our wallets from harm and our bellies from expansion - we make it at last to that king of attractions. That beast keyed to such a poor diet that it must spend 16 hours a day eating. Nature's weedwhacker, at whose approach the bamboo forests shiver in fear. The giant of giants...
The panda. Sprawled on his back for all to see, pulling bamboo branches to his mouth and stuffing them in. Some passersby stop to admire. Others continue along the path, tugged along by their unenthralled young. Eventually, the panda has had quite enough bamboo and ambles to the strategically placed stream for a good long drink. We look on in awe. Eventually, the panda has had quite enough water and ambles back to the same bamboo clump as before, there to blissfully eat bamboo paw-to-mouth. We consider his manner of life.
Me: "Typical male."
Helani: "Yeah. 'I'm going to go back to the couch now.'"
Silent consideration of panda, and perhaps other matters, resumes. Briefly.
Helani: "It must be an easy life. No predators..."
Me: [blinking] "No creditors?"
There are not words to convey the look Helani gives me.
Juli: "If this is Panda, press one..."