Itchyfingers in the Media…Well…not Exactly…

February 27, 2009 at 11:28 am | Posted in itchy mouth | 1 Comment
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Recently, Itchyfingers received an email from a writer of Guru Magazine of the Bangkok Post newspaper who happened to stumble across our post, In Search of Paper Clips, on the special fashion sense of local university students. The magazine wanted to write an article about it and asked our permission for the use of a photo. Itchyfingers were glad that our little observation had made it to the local magazine and would like to share this article with all.

Yeah! Itchyfingers featured in the media! Er…not exactly lah…just Itchyfingers’
pic of university girl with paper clip on the school uniform appearing on the 
20 February issue of the Guru Magazine…hahah….

Much earlier, our post had also inspired two blog entries by fellow bloggers. It is also one of the most read posts of Itchyfingers. 8)

The writer later wrote back to tell us of the good response from readers, many whom did not even notice the use of clips on uniforms until the article came out. 🙂

Itchyfingers are greatly encouraged and we hope to bring many more fun observations to readers in our following posts!

Do read more about the article from Guru Magazine here  🙂

Also see related post:
> In Search of Paper Clips – Bangkok, Thailand Trip #4 


Sh*t Happens – Taipei, Taiwan Trip #8

February 23, 2009 at 5:11 pm | Posted in itchy backside | 1 Comment
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I hate to visit the toilets whenever I am travelling. Firstly you dunnu where to find them when you need them since you are not familiar with the place and secondly, and most importantly, you dunnu how are the condition of the toilets locally. But when Itchyfingers were in the Taipei Zoo, I found myself more than eager to visit the loos….not because I was urgent all the time…then why leh? :p

The first toilet I visited at the zoo…was curious what was the sign about…

Upon entering the loo, the first thing I saw was the doors with animals’ backside prints….:p

Heee…so cute all of them showing backsides….

Then there was this big sign at the side showing the poo of different animals…

I like the use of puns in the Chinese title…

A closer look…what goes in must go out…so a meat eater like the Clouded 
Leopard will have longish and sticky poo whereas the herbivorous Formosan
Sika Deer’s pellet poo is dry on the surface….:p

Wow, so educational hor their loo? I thought that was about it so proceeded to go to the loo…

I chose the monkey door since we are close relatives…..hahah... 8)

I went in and closed the door….oh, what’s that?

The door with more info on the monkey’s poo….😀 The words were located
below cos the loos in Taiwan were mostly the squat kinds….

A closer look at the sign….

So then I was curious about the back of the other doors…would they be about the poo of the respective animals on the doors?

And sure enough…all of them had information at the back! 😀

I ran outta of the loo to get the camera from Tisu Boy…:p

Why do herbivorous’ poo contain traces of grass matter? Because the fiber are
tough to digest…

Another reason to eat your greens…😀

It was only now that I recalled seeing the same green poo-shaped toilet sign near the zoo entrance…does that mean that loo also has similar signs inside?

So after this first visit to the loo, I would always look out for other loos around.. 😀 And I was right….heee…:p

Part of a huge sign outside another toilet…this one talked about the recycling
of poo in nature…:p

See how one’s dung can be another’s sumptuous meal? heeee…and how
it can be fertiliser for plants to grow….? I love the cute cartoon…. 

Poor beetle…something must be wrong with the senses…if not why do they
like to eat sh*t? :p

Not only they had educational signs on animals’ poo in all the loos, there were different themes too! 

This one talked about converting poo into energy….:p

So I found myself so busy….:p Not only I was busy looking at the animals, I was also looking at their signages, landscaping and now, the loos! :p And there seemed to be so many loos around! We had only planned to stay till the early afternoon in the zoo as we wanted to go to Danshui to see the sunset. But the zoo was simply too big to explore around….and now I was also distracted by the loos…hahahah…that was the reason why I missed seeing the gorilla walking around….:(

So many poo-shape signs outside this loo near the hippo enclosure….must go
and take a look! 

Again, behind each animal sign, there were information on them and their diet…and of course…their poo!

Oh my…the African Elephants are really full of sh*t!

Hee…the White Rhinos like to poop at the same place…piling up like a mountain…:p

This is cute. The gorillas mark their territory by pooping on top of other 
gorilla’s poo poo…overpowering others’ scent…wow…i really like the cartoon…

More Qs & As inside the loo…

The interesting thing was that most of the time the loos were empty…so I could go freely from cubicle to cubicle to look and shoot the poo signs….hahha…er…wonder how come the other visitors dun need to go to the loo? :p

Another loo sign at the Bird World…and the theme…heavenly droppings…hahahahah

Here’s the reasons behind the heavenly droppings…:D

Hmm…this I din know…only know cow dungs can be sold for money…in 
India at least…:p

Oh, and elephant dungs are very useful too! Remember Itchyfingers bought
one handmade elephant dung notebook in Chiangmai, Thailand? No smell
at all…!  

Oh, while checking out the loo, Itchyfingers saw this sign and couldn’t help giggling…er…in all due respect to toilet cleaners for keeping the loos hygenic…er..we din mean to be so mean lah…we are just being a bit naughty….hahahah…but it is really a bit funny leh….:p

Er…the name sounds a bit…for the working environment hor…? Er…typo
error on the sign…:p 

This nice loo next to MacDonalds had no poo signs…

Notice there were numbers on the green poo-shape toilet signs? I guess there must be many more loos in the zoo, too bad we had limited time to spend…we had our late lunch only at around 3pm and after eating, we felt we might not be able to rush to Danshui in time for the sunset, since the winter sun seemed to set much earlier…But all was not lost, cos we managed to catch the Cowparade instead..hahah 😀 But given the chance to visit again, I would definitely love to check out all the loos…hahah…afterall, they are entertaining as well as very educational…certainly a fun way to learn more about animals…and of course, their poo! 😀

Poo art plastered on the wall outside loo near entrance….wow! one piece of 
sh*t had gone missing!

Also see related posts:
> Gorilla in the Mist – Taipei, Taiwan Trip #7
It’s a Cat! No! It’s a Bear! – Taipei, Taiwan Trip #6
Wow Cow! Holy Cow! So Many Cows! – CowParade @ Taipei, Taiwan Trip #5
Gong Xi Fa Cai! – Taipei, Taiwan Trip #4
Holy Cow! – CowParade @ Taipei, Taiwan Trip #3
Wow Cow! – CowParade @ Taipei, Taiwan Trip #2
Buy One Get One Free! – Taipei, Taiwan Trip #1 
Holy Sh*t!

Gorilla in the Mist – Taipei, Taiwan Trip #7

February 19, 2009 at 12:30 pm | Posted in itchy backside | Leave a comment
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While we missed the Giant Pandas, our main purpose in visiting the Taipei Zoo was actually to see one of the animals that cannot be found in our zoo – the Gorilla. 

According to reports, in the 1983 our Singapore Zoo did have four gorillas, but they all died of infection by a relatively common Asian soil pathogen Pseudomonas psuedomallei. (More reports here) Since then, these great apes have not been seen there. Itchyfingers didn’t even know of their once presence in the zoo until we attended a talk. I think for most people, the closest they have ever seen a gorilla must have been in the movies….:p Well, the most famous of all has to be King Kong, with his classic pose climbing on top of the Empire State Building. But the gorilla in the movie King Kong had been portrayed almost like a monster…especially the old, cranky 1933 version, though it was groundbreaking at that era…Peter Jackson’s 2005 version, in my itchymouth‘s opinion, had some memorable scenes with super close-ups of King Kong’s emotional and sensitive side. King Kong was definitely given more human touch. 

It was the same feeling when Itchyfingers finally reached the Gorilla’s enclosure in the Taipei Zoo and saw it for the very first time…so near yet so far, the only obstacle between us being the thick glass panel that had seen its better days…

So human…

Sleeping under the late afternoon glaring sun….

I missed this moment when he was walking cos I was distracted by something
else and reached the enclosure later than Tisu boy…

I was touched…

The side profile of this Western Lowland Gorilla reminded me of some early 
indigenous people…and oh I love that punky hairstyle!

The deep-set eyes... 8) And those ears look just like ours!

Curious as a child as he checked out his human visitors behind the glass

A quick search – the Western Lowland Gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) is a subspecies of the Western Gorilla (Gorilla gorilla) that live in montane, primary, and secondary forests and lowland swamps in Angola, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea and Gabon. It is the gorilla usually found in zoos. According to this site, two-year-old ‘Bao-bao’ arrived at Taipei in 1987, and 23-year-old silverback gorilla ‘Hei-pei’ was donated to the zoo in July 1993. So by now, Pao-pao must be 24 years old and Hei Pei is at least 40! Wow! That’s grand old age for Gorillas, as they can survive around 40 years in captivity.

Why was I touched when I saw the Gorilla? At size up to 6 feet (1.8 m) tall and weighing almost 450 pounds (200 kg), you would expect the giant primate to be quite intimidating. But what I saw was a peaceful gentle giant content with munching his snack of sugar cane…a far cry from the monstrous beast baring sharp teeth and beating chest in the movie. One could argue that maybe it was because he was a zoo animal without freedom. But if you were to read and watch documentaries of the gorillas, you would learn that they are really shy and secretive inhabitants of dense tropical forests, with diet consisting of mostly plants and some insects. Amazing how such diets allow them to grow into big and muscular primates…heee…:p

Try shift your angle of view and see this cute sign showing the weight of a gorilla…

…can be over the top! 😀

A penny for your thoughts? :p

Sitting upright scratching forehand deep in thoughts….so human!

And finally decided to continue munching his sugar cane snack…

Gorillas in the wild are threatened by habitat loss and poaching (warning: disturbing pictures…) I couldn’t believe that there are actually people who poach these so human-looking animals for bushmeat! How can they ever do that? Considering they look and share similar genes to us, wouldn’t it be like eating your own kind? :O Itchyfingers salute the work of Dian Fossey for her work in gorilla conservation and campaigning against the poaching of wild gorillas. While it is not up to Itchyfingers to comment if we should have animals in zoos, since zoos certainly do serve their purposes in education and conservation, we would definitely prefer to have them in the wild! Really love to have the chance to see wild gorillas (or any other wildlife) in their graceful moves living in their natural habitats one day…

Shooting the gorilla under the glaring afternoon sun and behind the dunnu-when-was-the-last-time-they-cleaned-it glass panel, it was like shooting them in a mist…you tend to get this blue and green tint on your picture….nevertheless, it was still an amazing feeling seeing the gorilla…

(note: some technical hiccup may show this video is no longer available and brings you to youtube…do remember to come back to Itchyfingers!)

Also see related posts:
> It’s a Cat! No! It’s a Bear! –Taipei, Taiwan Trip #6
Wow Cow! Holy Cow! So Many Cows! – CowParade @ Taipei, Taiwan Trip #5
Gong Xi Fa Cai! – Taipei, Taiwan Trip #4
Holy Cow! – CowParade @ Taipei, Taiwan Trip #3
Wow Cow! – CowParade @ Taipei, Taiwan Trip #2
Buy One Get One Free! – Taipei, Taiwan Trip #1

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