Archive for the Anthropromorphism Category

Paul the Psychic Octopus Hits the Big Time

Posted in Anthropromorphism, Bizzare Behavior, Psychic Pets, Randomalia, Roadside attractions, Travesties of nature on July 23, 2010 by Eric S.

If, like me, you could give a rat’s ass about soccer (football to those of you familiar with the metric system), there’s a chance you missed out on Paul the Octopus’s 15 minutes of fame. But this mid-phenomenon report by RussiaToday should be all you need to come up to speed:

Basically, what we have here is an octopus raised in captivity in a tourist aquarium in Germany with a considerably better than random ability to pick winners in Germany vs Whoever soccer matches. Paul lodged his predictions by choosing which side of a two-binned feeding dish to take his dinner from: one marked with a German Flag, the other marked with the flag of their opponent. According to stats on Wikipedia, his 2010 predictions were 100% accurate, making him 61% more accurate than Punxsutawney Phil and (if I’m doing the math right) 99.6% more accurate than dumb luck. NOTE: Yes, I did that math in my head before realizing it was right there on the Wikipedia page.

So, honestly, this followup story shouldn’t be that surprising:

Paul, welcome to the Big Leagues. But it’s not all bad, at least for Paul’s owners (I can’t claim to know the pros and cons of octopoidial life). A Russian bookmaker offered his owners €100,000, and I could swear I heard a story about someone stateside offering more than a million dollars for him. According to The Wall Street Journal, he has a job offer from Infosys. And according to this report, a black comedy Paul the Octopus murder mystery filmed in South Africa is in post production in Beijing.

All of which is trumped by the fact his immortalization in this little ditty by Perry Gripp, of Cat Flushing a Toilet fame:


The drunken monkeys of St. Kitts

Posted in Anthropromorphism, Bizzare Behavior with tags , , on March 21, 2008 by Eric S.

I’d take a jab at the video’s assertion that humans are less accepting of drunk monkeys in leadership positions, but it’s just too easy.

Had we taught them to use matches, this story may have had a very different ending

Posted in Anthropromorphism, Bizzare Behavior, True Story on March 19, 2008 by Eric S.

Another from the Sorry I Missed It When It Was News archive:

Juan, an Andean spectacled bear at the Berlin Zoo decided he’d had enough of zoo life, paddled across his mote on a log, scaled the retaining wall and attempted to commandeer a bicycle before being tranqued by zoo officials.

Not for nothing, but this is clearly the fault of the Russians, who had no business handing important, human-only secrets to their ursine circus performers.

Just because it never gets old…

Posted in Anthropromorphism, Bizzare Behavior, Randomalia on March 17, 2008 by Eric S.

Here’s a video of a chimpanzee washing a cat:

Shark-eating octopus

Posted in Anthropromorphism, Bizzare Behavior with tags , , on February 28, 2008 by Eric S.