Tuesday, December 13, 2005


Recently it has been impossible to read The Washington Post or its free tabloid, Express without seeing something about, Tai Shan, the National Zoo's new panda cub.

So I was amused to finally see that some Post writers were willing to poke fun at their own paper, skewering the constant panda coverage. There was a really funny cartoon depicting how every single section of the paper could get in on all this panda action.

I laughed out loud, thinking of it as satire rather than a prediction. But you know what they say about the genius of comedy. Today's Health section a short piece explaining the psychology behind why people like pictures of the Tai Shan so much and that "cute" pictures trigger an emotional response in a certain part of the brain.

Apparently humans are hardwired to find respond positively to the physical features of young creatures (human or not). That way the species survives because adults are drawn towards and want to nurture the young.

Okay, so I learned something new...but I still think we are seeing way too much of that panda.

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