Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Did I Miss My Calling in Life?

I've been watching more on Animal Planet lately and I've been wondering if I chose the wrong profession. After seeing how much fun they have at Steve Irwin's Australia Zoo and the devotion of the zookeepers in The Little Zoo That Could (which is on right before Meerkat Manor), I want to be a zookeeper!

I would love being able to care for wild animals and teach people about them. Of course, I'd be heartbroken when they died or had to move to other zoos, but what a privilege it would be to be one of the lucky people who get to be close to wild animals.

Imagine getting to feed/pet/care for wolves, coyotes, lions, tiger, bears, otters, penguins, meerkats, etc. The critters seem very attached to their human family, too, like dogs and cats but bigger and more dangerous. Like the critters we saw in the Traverse City zoo, they are used to human companionship.

I wonder if zoos need volunteers, what kind of training you need to care for wild animals, and where you might get it?

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Irish Fest

I spent yesterday at the Kalamazoo Irish Fest in Arcadia Creek Festival Place. It's a beautiful park in downtown K'zoo. I visited with my friends who run Darkblade Studios and worked in their booth. There was lots of good food, drinks, shopping, and music. Unfortunately, it was rainy so the turn out wasn't good -- but we had lots of fun anyway.

The funniest moment of the day happened when all of us were away from the booth but Doug. Several people came it at once and one person asked, quite seriously, which of the Celtic knotwork jewelry was Scottish and which was Irish. What make this so funny is that it's remniscient of our favorite joke (obviously based on a Blues Brothers joke):

Q: What kind of music does your band play?
A: Both kinds: Scottish and Irish.

Doug politely explained that knotwork was common to both while the thistle was Scottish and the claddagh and shamrock were Irish -- and he did it with a straight face.

Irish Fests seem to be very popular in Sept. (probably celebrating the fact there are only six more months until St. Patrick's Day). If you are free next year, visit the K'zoo Irish Fest. The Irish American Club has details on their web site.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Good-Bye, Mate

Today on CNN: Thousands mourn 'Crocodile Hunter.' The memorial included eulogies by Steve Irwin's father, Bob, and his eight-year-old daughter, Bindi. Read more on Discovery News and watch the service tonight at 9:00 p.m. on Animal Planet.

UPDATE: The memorial was not shown on Animal Planet at 9:00 p.m.; the message on the AP web site about it disappeared sometime yesterday afternoon/evening. Hopefully they will show it soon so folks outside of Australia can say good-bye to Steve. The few clips I saw on the CNN were very moving, a fitting tribute at his zoo with thousands of people attending.

UPDATE Sept. 27: Widow: 'Croc Hunter' death film won't be shown. Thank God! I hoped this would be the case but feared it might leak out on the Internet or something. Terri and the kids don't need that!

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Talk Like a Pirate Day

Arrr, matey, it's talk like a pirate day. Need help? Want more info? Visit these silly web sites and be havin' a piratey day:

The Official Talk Like a Pirate Day Web Site (for American Pirates)
How to Talk Like a Pirate
Top Ten Pirate Pick Up Lines

Official British HQ of Talk Like a Pirate Day (for British Pirates)
How to Be Speakin' Like a Pirate

Be sure to enjoy some pirate movies! (This link goes to a list of pre-Pirates of the Caribbean movies, for stuffy old sea rats.)

Monday, September 11, 2006


These photos say more about the horror and heroism of 9/11/01 than my meager words could ever hope to convey.

FoxNews.com will be re-playing the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001 in real time starting at 8:30 a.m. today. Watch it and remember. Never, never forget!

Saturday, September 09, 2006


Steve Irwin, The Crocodile Hunter

“The audience needs to come with me and be there with that animal. If we can touch people about wildlife, then they want to save it. ... My job, my mission, my reason for being on this planet is to save wildlife. Thanks for coming along!"

What can I say that hasn't already been said? Wild animals everywhere have lost their greatest friend and champion. After all those close calls, I still can't believe a mere stingray killed the seemingly immortal Crocodile Hunter. Rest in peace, mate. I'll miss your boundless enthusiam, your love of life, and your love of wildlife.

Visit the Animal Planet Tribute Site to share your thoughts or photos, send condolences to the Irwins, donate to the Wildlife Warriors Fund, or watch clips from The Crocodile Hunter.