Archive for March, 2010

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elephant checks

March 26, 2010

I recently ran out of checks after 4.5 years since I ordered my first set… shows how much I use checks. Actually the main reason I use checks is to pay my beautiful mother for all the bills she is still taking  care of for me. So I am paying my own bills just not “paying” my own bills. Get it? Anyway, I give my mother a set amount of money each time I get paid. At first we tried to do electronic transfers but my bank (I won’t name names) is the king of ridiculous fees. So I had to pay a ridiculous amount just to transfer money to my mothers account. So then we decided I would just send her checks every two weeks. But that practice ended up depleting the last of my check stash which is why I had to buy new ones. I was without checks for about a month so my mom was without money for about a month.. hehe.. she lived :)

I went on a mission to find the perfect set of checks. I don’t know why this was so important to me, but it was. I tried to order checks from my banks website and I narrowed it down to Dallas Cowboys checks or Hello Kitty checks. I asked my friends what they thought and the results were all over the place. Some thought Hello Kitty wasn’t professional enough. Others thought Hello Kitty checks fit perfectly with my personality. A couple of Cowboys fans really loved the Dallas Cowboys checks and  thought those were a bit more professional, but not by much. I eventually decided against both of those choices because I found this wonderful website called Girly Checks.

On the Girly Checks site they have every type of check style imaginable for every type of person. I did a search for elephants and it turned up some great options for me! I ended up settling on some elephant checks with four different designs. Here is how two of the designs look: (I will try to get some better pictures up later but my camera is being a loser right now)

The best thing about Girly Checks was the price! I got my checks wayy cheaper than what the bank was trying to charge me! Now when I write a check happiness will follow… because I’ll  be using elephant checks! Makes me smile everytime!!

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only in st. louie

March 16, 2010

First, let’s start off by talking about how amazingly awesome the Saint Louis Zoo is… It’s FREE. NO COST. WALK IN AND PAY NOTHING. That makes it the best zoo in the country in my opinion. But besides the fact that its free its also a wonderful zoo with a large selection of animals. The Saint Louis Zoo WildCare Institute does a lot of great work as well. Read more about it here.

In 2007 , there was a new baby elephant at the Saint Louis Zoo. I was sooo happy and couldn’t wait to see it. The zoo even had a contest to determine the name. The name Jade won.  I really like that name. (Jade has had a hard knock life but that story is for another day). 

For some reason it took me forever to get to the zoo to see this little baby Jade. I guess I was busy with school and life…who knows? I finally went to the zoo with a friend (former), but I guess we got there late. We didn’t look up what time the zoo closed so when we got there they were putting away all the animals. So I made my friend run with me so I could see the baby elephant. Thats’s all I wanted to see!!! So we ran/walked quickly and we made it to the elephant area.

Side note: Getting to the elephants at the Saint Louis Zoo is one of the most difficult things in life. I don’t know why. They are hidden in a weird trail and it takes like an hour to make it there. I guess its because they are that special :)

Back to the story. We finally made it to the elephants. And I wish I could say that the elephants were still out but they weren’t. It was so…so…sad. Disappointment to the nth degree. Really. I’m not exaggerating. And it’s probably because I knew I wouldnt be back to the zoo anytime soon. I never did see Jade as a little baby. I did get to see her as a small three year old. At least I think that was her.  Oh well. I will see a baby elephant one day…

Jade

Back to the point of this post. The Saint Louis Zoo recently announced that two of its female Asian elephants are pregnant…mother and daughter…knocked up by the same male. And that’s why the name of my post is “only in st. louie”. I’ve lived here long enough to know that you only get that type of baby daddy drama in St. Louis. Hehe. Just kidding…kind of. This is a city I’ve learned to love. There’s a FREE zoo. How can you not love it??? 

Back to the elephants. 17 year old, Raja, has impregnated both 38 year old, Ellie, and 14 year old, Rani. Ellie is Rani’s mother. Rani is the mother of Jade, the elephant born in 2007. Yeah, Rani started young. Don’t judge her. Both Ellie and Rani are due in the summer of 2011. Of course, I won’t be in St. Louis at that time because the world is always working against me.  I may have to make a visit just to see the two baby elephants!!! 

Daddy Raja

The Riverfront Times posted a funny article about the whole situation. To read, click here.

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elephant history: hanno

March 12, 2010

Think about getting an elephant as a gift… interesting gift right? I mean I would love to have an elephant but I dont expect to find an elephant with a bow on it, sitting on my front porch on my 23rd birthday. Although dreams do come true so you never know…

Anyway, Hanno, the white elephant, was a gift. King Manuel I of Portugal gave Pope Leo X the Asian elephant on the the Pope’s coronation. So I guess King Manuel thought to himself what would my good friend the Pope like as a gift and then he had an epiphany…an elephant!!! a white one! Most likely Hanno was albino. Albino elephants can be white or pink. (Interesting fact, i know)

Well, it turns out Pope Leo X loved Hanno dearly. Hanno became the Pope’s favorite pet and he spent tons of quality time with Hanno. Hanno often participated in processions as well.

The sad thing is Hanno died at the age of 6. Hanno lived from 1510 to June 8th 1516. It is said that Hanno had a bad case of constipation, and they tried to treat it. However, the treatment ended up killing the young elephant. Pope Leo X, a good master and friend, was at Hanno’s side at the time of his death. Hanno was buried in the Cortile del Belvedere, and the Pope wrote Hanno’s epitaph. It read:

Under this great hill I lie buried

Mighty elephant which the King Manuel
Having conquered the Orient
Sent as captive to Pope Leo X.
At which the Roman people marvelled, —
A beast not seen for a long time,
And in my brutish breast they perceived human feelings.
Fate envied me my residence in the blessed Latium
And had not the patience to let me serve my master a full three years.
But I wish, oh gods, that the time which Nature would have assigned to me,
and Destiny stole away,
You will add to the life of the great Leo.

He lived seven years
He died of angina
He measured twelve palms in height.
Giovanni Battista Branconio dell’Aquila
Privy chamberlain to the pope
And provost of the custody of the elephant,
Has erected this in 1516, the 8th of June,
In the fourth year of the pontificate of Leo X.

That which Nature has stolen away
Raphael of Urbino with his art has restored.

To learn more about Hanno, read The Pope’s Elephant by Silvio A. Bedini

sketch of Hanno

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why i love tarjay aka target

March 10, 2010

Adults' Plush Elephant Economy Mascot Costume, Target, $124.99

Seriously?!? Seriously Target?!? I may just have to buy this. This is sooo hilarious to me. Why do they sell this?

Under additonal information the Target website says “Item cannot be gift wrapped”. Bummer!

I think this elephant costume may be one of the funniest gifts you could ever give someone. And just in case you were  wondering my birthday is coming up in June and I would LOVE to get this… no gift wrap of course…

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twins!!!

March 8, 2010

The first known male elephant twins were born on Saturday, March 6th in Surin, Thailand to Phang Thong Khun, a 35 year old Asian elephant! How exciting!!! Elephant twins are extremely rare. The only other known set of elephant twins are female and they were born in Thailand 15 years ago.

I want twin boys when I have kids. Therefore, I am jealous of Phang Thong Khun. Congratulations Phang! They are darling! :)

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6 elephants at the dallas zoo

March 8, 2010

I am from Dallas and I love Big D! I have been to the Dallas Zoo many times and enjoy visiting the elephants.

In 2008, KeKe the elephant passed away. What came after was a huge controversy about where to send her companion, Jenny. Elephants are social creatures and they need to be around other elephants. The Association of Zoos and Aquariums has made it a requirement that at least two elephants be in a zoo exhibit.

The Dallas Zoo was planning to send Jenny to a facility in Mexico, but an organization in Dallas was very opposed to the idea and protested. This incident made national news. The result of this controversy was expediting the construction of the Giants of the Savanna habitat, which was financed by a 2006 City of Dallas bond.

The Giants of the Savanna habitat is 11 acres and is scheduled to be completed in May of this year. It will house the elephants, but also the giraffes, lions, cheetahs, and other large animals. “The Savanna habitat includes a 10,000-square-foot elephant house that includes padded, heated floors and a community room with a 7-foot-deep sand base. The house opens up to a 6-acre grassland, which includes features designed to keep the animal occupied” reports the Dallas Morning News.

Because of this expansion, the Dallas Zoo was able to keep Jenny and in 2009, Gypsy, another elephant, also became a resident of the Dallas Zoo. Now, two more female African elephants have joined Gypsy and Jenny! There names are Kamba and Congo. The last two elephants, Stumpy and Mama, will arrive in Dallas by the end of March! The new additions to the Dallas elephant family will be able to be seen by the public beginning Memorial Day weekend.

Female African Elephants at the Dallas Zoo
-Jenny, 33 years old, 10500 lbs.
-Gypsy, 27 years old, 8500 lbs.
-Kamba, 30 years old, 4700 lbs.
-Congo, 32 years old, 5400 lbs.
-Stumpy, 41 years old, 10500 lbs.
-Mama, 37 years old, 8000 lbs.

I am so happy that Jenny has so many companions now. There were lots of concerns about her depression when KeKe died. I hope she is doing better now and these new additions to the family make the Dallas Zoo seem more like a home to her.

In Memory of KeKe

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dumbo on broadway???

March 5, 2010

“Dumbo”, the 1941 Disney classic, may be on Broadway in a few years! What a dream come true! Disney Theatrical Productions and Stephen Daldry are working to develop a stage adaptation for the animated movie. Stephen Daldry won a Tony Award for directing “Billy Elliot: The Musical”. The New York Times reports that Mr. Daldry and Disney are in the very early stages of creation. Mr. Daldry approached Disney with the idea, and they have been in talks ever since. A Disney executive said “Let’s put it this way, ‘Dumbo’ will not be on Broadway in the 2010-11 season, because it’s simply in the very early stages.”

I say that is ok, take your time and make it good. I would travel to NYC to see this on opening night!!!