Tag Archives: certified fresh

Zebra

Zebra

When I began this internet web blog four years and 199 animals ago, I started with the aardvark. I did so because the aardvark is the first animal alphabetically, and I had to start somewhere. [Ed. Note: You did not have to start. We all wish you hadn’t.] Today, with my 200th animal rating, to celebrate the site’s fourth anniversary, I am featuring the other side of the coin dictionary: the zebra.[1]

There’s a critical question that comes with the territory when discussing the zebra. Namely, how do I tell it from the horse? Well boy have I got a lifehack for you. Just check for protruberances on the back of its hind legs called chestnuts! The horse has them on all four limbs, but the zebra only has the front two.[2]

Also, it has stripes.

Also, it has stripes.

Special powers

In a herd, the zebra’s stripes can create a disorienting effect that makes it hard to zero in on any one zebra. This is why the zebra is known as “the sniper’s foil.”

Furthermore, the zebra is capable of breeding with similar species, leading to the creation of the zorse, zony or zedonk (known collectively as zebroids).

Nice leggings, kid!

Nice leggings, kid!

Weaknesses

It can’t change its stripes.

Number of legs

Four.

Favorite video game

PaRappa The Rapper.

What if it fought a bear?

The bear will have to catch it first.

Is it noble?

Yes.

Final rating

“Zedonk” is one of the greatest words, and we owe its existence to the zebra. Beyond that, it’s just a rock-solid animal. It doesn’t have the incredible career of the horse, but it looks considerably cooler and won’t sell out its principles for an apple.

 

 

10/10

 

 

[1]To be clear, this is not my final animal rating. Fingers crossed that I don’t ride a rollercoaster that flies off the track and explodes before next week, despite what the prophecy predicts.

 

[2]I got this pro-tip from the Kingfisher Illustrated Encyclopedia of Animals, in which “chestnuts” happens to land on a line-break and is essentially rendered as “chest-nuts,” which makes the word look a million times grosser.

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Platypus

Platypus

There is no animal more confused about its identity than the platypus.

This thing is a mammal that lays eggs. It has a duck bill but a beaver tail, and walks like a reptile. It produces milk but has no teats, instead just kinda sweating it out. It has two ovaries, but only one works. It has extra bones in its shoulder that other mammals don’t, and nobody knows where it got them. It has tons of sex chromosomes – ten in fact, because one pair wasn’t good enough for it; its gender is more complicated than some of my old internet passwords. It has spurs on its hind feet that deliver venom – and again, I can’t stress enough that it’s a mammal despite all this. It is born with teeth that fall out one embarrassing day in fifth grade and it hides in the nurse’s office until school is over. And that’s just the tip of the figurative iceberg (see Weaknesses).

What else do we know about this duck-billed iceberg?

Special powers

We know the platypus has electrolocation, meaning it can detect prey by the electric fields generated by the movement of muscles. That sounds like a power Grant Morrison made up for a cool splash page, but it’s actually true and it is extremely baller.

Its internal temperature is lower than most normal mammals. That’s how dedicated it is to being chill.

ICE COLD

What’s cooler than being cool?

The platypus stores fat in its tail. Given that extra junk in the trunk is so hot right now, it is perfectly poised to be the breakout star of whatever music video awards happen this month.

I should mention here that venom again. Venom! Crazy.

Weaknesses

In addition to the above-mentioned conflicting traits, the platypus has had a goth phase, yuppie phase, gymrat phase, rockabilly phase, steampunk phase, dieselwave phase, person-who-wears-a-hat-all-the-time phase, politically active poet phase, eccentric balloonist phase, and many more. It tries on identities like other people try on glasses frames at the store. Fortunately, the above-mentioned chillness remains constant.

Number of legs

Four.

Magazine subscriptions

Redbook, Ranger Rick.

Is it on a piece of currency?

It is on the 20-cent coin in Australia, opposite the head of Queen Elizabeth II.

now that's paper. okay it's metal.

It’s so money and it doesn’t even know it, per the requirement that every website must contain at least one reference to Swingers (the Simmons Rule).

What if it fought a bear?

It depends what phase the bear catches it in, but if it’s a street-fighting one, the platypus has a chance.

Is it noble?

Yes.

Final rating

The platypus doesn’t always know what kind of dude it wants to be, but it is always my kind of dude. I mean that in a non-gender-specific way. Rock on, you unnecessarily double-ovaried weirdo!

 

 

10/10

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