Category Archives: Animals

Further adventures in hatred or: Leaving no tern unstoned

James and a few thousand idiots against seagulls #1

So I made another new friend on the internets… Continue reading Further adventures in hatred or: Leaving no tern unstoned

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Dear John, Alfie the dog and Big Mama Thornton

Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you Big Mama Thornton and Alfie:

‘Hound Dog’ stuck on a loop in my head the other day, playing with Alfie – my Mum’s Cocker Spaniel. Turns out that although Elvis has the best known version, the song was first recorded by one Big Mama Thornton. I realise it was stars like Elvis that took the African-American blues to the cracker masses but until recently getting into Lightin’ Hopkins was as far as I crawled out of my lily-white honky box; and I’ve been missing out on so much. Continue reading Dear John, Alfie the dog and Big Mama Thornton

The squirrels of the fourteen b’ak’tun

14th b'ak'tun squirrel
14th b’ak’tun squirrel

If you’d told me five years ago I’d be spending the last day of planet earth in Gosport I’d have laughed in your face. I’d planned to play it safe and ride out 21st Dec 2012 somewhere up a mountain with a hunting rifle, caring Scandinavian wife and waterfall caves of tinned food. I came to my senses; but when 11.11am passed without global incident I shrugged like everybody else.

Still, there’s always the Rapture to look forward to. That and any number of asteroids. And the whole global warming thing. Another end of the world is always just around the corner, friend. Continue reading The squirrels of the fourteen b’ak’tun

Ten opinions from Edinburgh Zoo

Back in December, along with several billion pushchairs, I visited Edinburgh’s pandas. Four months later and one mating season already given up on, I decided I didn’t care what everybody’s favourite asexual bamboo aficionados were up to; instead I wondered how all the other animals were feeling.

1. Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes)

Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes)
“Hey, wanker. That’s shit on the glass and it’s there for a reason; take a hint and fuck off.”

Continue reading Ten opinions from Edinburgh Zoo

A Gentle Hogmanay for Edinburgh’s Pandas

Tian Tian staying out of the rain in her new home.
Tian Tian staying out of the morning rain on her side of the new home she shares with male panda, Yang Guang.

Tian Tian (Sweetie) and Yang Guang (Sunshine), Edinburgh Zoo’s latest guests, are “settling in well” and “very happy” according to our well informed and friendly guide during my Christmas visit to the zoo’s new £250,000 panda enclosure. Continue reading A Gentle Hogmanay for Edinburgh’s Pandas