Big Joe’s Jewelry, Gun & Pawn.

August 27, 2011 § 1 Comment

If you are afraid of wanton panda bear attacks, you may want to avoid Arizona. According to the Arizona Department of Highways, there are renegade pandas on the loose.

Every so often we see signs like this. Some charlatan who knows how to reprogram the highway signs takes a few minutes to change the sign from “ROADWORK AHEAD 2.5 MILES” to “BEWARE OF ZOMBIES” or “I LOVE HARRY POTTER” or “KATY PERRY IS HOT“. I like this particular one, because the thought of a rampaging giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) is very amusing. When I was a child, Ling-Ling and Hsing-Hsing came to visit our local zoo, and I had a chance to watch them sit on their little panda bottoms and eat bamboo and do the least amount of activity possible. I think that given their usual amount of physical exertion, a “panda rampage” might be a panda going from a seated position to a prone position. They are not exactly the most savage beasts.

Beware of panda rampages! They will softly nuzzle you with their furry faces and then eat your bamboo! Dread! Fear!

Everyone who has feared or dreaded having to buy jewelry for a loved one (or for someone that they accidentally knocked up), there is a glimmer of hope: NASA has discovered a planet made entirely out of diamonds. We are almost off the hook.

I know that I’ve written a lot about astronomy recently, but I feel like this needs mentioning. About 4000 light years away (a short trip of 23,513,999,300,000,000 miles) is a star called PSR J1719-1438 that has a planet orbiting it that is made entirely out of diamonds. Maybe instead of sending doomed Russian supply ships into space, we should work on getting out to PSR J1719-1438 and getting some of the space goodies there. Who cares if there is life on Mars? The real question is, “How much can we get for a handful of space diamonds at Big Joe’s Jewelry, Gun & Pawn?”

The question of giving jewelry as a way of getting to a woman’s heart (and regions beyond) is as old as human beings themselves. One can only assume that when the first humans were coming home from their woolly mammoth hunts, that their wives were waiting back at the caves, expecting him to remember that it was their anniversary and he’d better have some prehistoric flowers and a nice tennis bracelet for her.

This fanciful story may not be true, though, because it seems that recently scientists have uncovered shocking DNA evidence that early humans may not have been that choosy about their partners. Humans apparently mated with neanderthals.

There was a time in geologic history that both humans (Homo sapiens) and neanderthals (Homo neanderthalis) co-existed, and early DNA evidence suggests that our early ancestors might have occasionally “gone native” and hooked up with local neanderthals. There are innumerable possible jokes that could be made at this moment. For example, I could make a joke about that night in college that I picked up that girl from Dayton, OH, at McCarthy’s, and how in hindsight, I may have been trying to mate with a neanderthal. But what I really want to know is this: how did they find DNA evidence of early human mating habits? Did they find an early human fossilized in a tar pit clinging to his little black book? (@EarlyHumanPlaya: “Pimpin’ ain’t easy. #seeyouintheBritishMuseum”)

And lastly, speaking of neanderthal sex, a Jefferson County (KY) man may have set a new low for the human race. He was pulled over by local police because he was driving erratically. Officers discovered that he was drinking beer while driving. And he blew a .152 on the breathalyzer (nearly twice the legal limit). And I used the word “blew” in that last sentence for a very specific reason: he wasn’t alone.

George Howard, of Louisville, KY, was drunk driving home from a night on the town, and had a female companion with him who was, let’s just say, “going on a panda rampage.” Police arrested him for D.U.I., reckless driving and wanton endangerment. No charges we pressed against the woman. George Howard and his lady friend have set us back 10,000 years of evolution. Thanks, George! Everyone in the Bluegrass State is so proud of you. The sun shines bright on our ol’ Kentucky home.

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(Alternate title for this article: “Going on a panda rampage.”)

Keep a good heart; the worst is yet to come.

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