Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Imagine Pandas in the Rain

Sign stapled on many poles Monday morning

I don't really know what's going on with these signs that I saw on multiple poles on the rainy ride into work on Monday morning. Possibly, a prank. If I could read Japanese, perhaps the name would tell me more. For the sake of the blog, I almost called the number, which I blanked out in the photo above, but I figured they already got enough calls about pandas today, one way or another. Also, I know that pandas are extremely rare, and protected, and probably both prohibitively expensive and illegal to obtain, or to keep as pets. Yes, odds are, a prank.

Still. These notices were stapled up on poles in a neighborhood where the expense, legality, or practicality of obtaining a panda, and keeping it as a pet, and affording Yubari melons to feed it for that matter, would not be insurmountable barriers. And check out that bear on the poster--does it not resemble the snapshot of such a pet, far from its native element, posed upstairs near the stair railing?

But I think not. Still. As I rode away, I thought, OK JRA, open your mind a bit, remember that you saw a big old desert tortoise hauling shell up the sidewalk near here, so, what if a pet panda got loose in the neighborhood, what would that look like, if you caught a glimpse of him loping along one of the quiet side streets lined with eucalyptus and oleanders? 

So I gazed down the next side street, which looked just as I had imagined, and there it was: a black and white panda bear loping across the quiet street, having snuffled the scent of the bamboo grove in a nearby Japanese garden, on his breakfast walkabout. I ride through a world where such dreams are possible. I dream of pandas in the rain. Get up. Go ride.



  1. Rusty Japanese, I cannot read the kanji, but the katakana I think says pe ni su.
    Which does not make any sense to me.
    If I found said panda, would I call the number?
    Or just purchase the melons?
    Get a larger freezer?

  2. I will look for him in the snow today myself.

    there used to be escaped zoo monkeys running wild in the bronx when I lived there. for reals! never saw one, but often thought about what the encounter would be like.

  3. Have you tried calling "602-5?"

  4. Thanks limom, I think I start to see, phonetically, what they are getting at.

    Clowncar, I was accosted by the monkeys that scurry around the tourists at Emei Shan in China begging peanuts and junk food. There were no pandas up there, but maybe there were at one time, and the Sichuan sanctuaries are not that far from there.

    Steve A, I keep getting "the number you have dialled cannot be.." something something. I'll keep trying until it goes through.


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