THE BILBY

Ladies and Gentlemen, in honor of the blessed occasion of Easter, The Elephant is proud to present to you: THE BILBY.

wildlife_mammals_bilby

THE BILBY is a marsupial, native to (unsurprisingly) Australia, and is a close relative of the bandicoot*.  It does all the things you’d expect a demented-looking marsupial to do: burrow, eat bugs, breed rapidly, become endangered… but unlike other marsupials, THE BILBY (whose name should always be spoken with the definite article, and a certain degree of gusto) is helping Asutralia by competing with invasive species–not for food or habitat, but for air time.

chocolate_bilby

That’s right, this rabbit-eared, long-snouted rat-beast is being promoted as an Australian replacement for the Easter Bunny, that jolly holiday icon whose prolific kin are slowly destroying the Australian countryside.  I do not know whether THE Easter BILBY is meeting with a lot of success, but we here at The Elephant offer him our full support: if THE BILBY can go ten rounds in a snuggle-off with a creature widely held up as the international standard for cute, then there is hope for the rest of us.  God speed, THE BILBY.  May your light show us the way.

(* Sorry, here’s the actual bandicoot.)

Great Cats of the Internet (Japanese Edition)

I don’t plan on becoming one of those guys who just writes about internet cats all the time, and posts pictures of internet cats, and eventually through some strange apotheosis becomes an internet cat, spending the rest of eternity in a Buddha-like state, gazing out of screens all across the cosmos with my shiny slitted eyes and regulating the karmic lols with my endless feline data mind, but it must not be said that I do not appreciate a good cat every now and again.  Here, then, are some of my favorite internet cats, straight from the Japanese internet*:

This fine fellow is called Winston-san, and I’m told he has been featured prominently on Cute Overload.  His fame means little to me, but I am quite impressed by his table manners and his sheer fluff.

Papi-chan is possibly the fattest cat in all of  the internet.  I am not sure whether his size is a result of unwise care, or a natural condition, but his adorableness is undeniable.  Also, it is amusing to hear the narrator say “Norwegian Forest Cat”.  (I know a couple of Norwegian Forest Cats, and they are certainly characters.)

I believe Maru-chan may be the king of all internet cats.  Having come to the attention of the online community due to his amazing love of boxes (above, and remixed here), Maru is the epitome of feline entertainers:  round, curious, active, comical.  Here’s his (lengthy) info video:

(I might pause here to note that Maru is fond of a relaxed position also popular among my friends, the Norwegian Forest Cats, which is commonly termed “The Superman”.)

(* I do not mean to exclude cats from other parts of the world–these Japanese fellows just happen to be on my mind.  I may address cats of other locales, foreign and domestic, in the future…  barring apotheosis.)