Saturday, January 20, 2007

Save the Weird!

First, let me say, thank goodness for YouTube or I might never get to watch Craig Ferguson. (Clip is 2:42 minutes.)

This isn't just comedy.

The Zoological Society of London really has started a program called EDGE of Existence that is focusing on research and conservation efforts revolving around the world’s most Evolutionarily Distinct and Globally Endangered.


There really is a Human Zoo @ Adelaide Zoo operating in January 2007. Description from their Web site: Every week 6 humans will live in the Adelaide Zoo with scientist Dr Carla Litchfield. The human with the most sms votes at the end of the week has a chance to become the SUPER HUMAN (you can vote for your favourite human any time during January). Most voted human at the end of the month will win the title of SUPER HUMAN and win an amazing overseas holiday to Honolulu. Money raised from the Human Zoo concept will go to conservation projects.

And now for why finding these two subjects discussed on this video on YouTube caught my eye...

Strange coincidence alert!

Last night I had a dream I was "on exhibit". Not in a zoo! I'd agreed to be part of an Internet-based reality show where I was surviving on a deserted island for an entire year. It was all very The Blue Lagoon complete with a very handsome Christopher Atkins blond (ooh-la-la) and me looking like Brooke. Every week the contestants blogged about their experiences (via satellite), and there was video posted too. It was a fun dream, and I thought it was eerie that I woke up, turned on the Internet, and found this video that talks about human beings putting themselves on exhibit in an effort to win a vacation on a tropical island.

And as for as saving weird animals...

My interest in zoology and conservation shows up in my writing. I've been working on a freebie short story for my Web site where the hero and heroine are wildlife biologists. They meet on a planet called the IGZ (Intra-Galactic Zoo), which is set up for conservation of all animals (but I write mostly about the weird ones). In my futuristic worlds, the IGZ is dedicated to the idea that human beings will always be interested in ensuring other species survive.

The IGA first shows up in Starlit Destiny, in this scene:
Dena knew she had no right to stop him from finishing the ivaraa he had been sent on, even if he didn’t believe. According to the traditions of her people, the zhel he found would be his--theirs. “You were called to this place,” Dena said, knowing Darian had no idea of the significance of the act. “There is zhel nearby that is...” Ours? Or was it? He said that Krys was dead. If he wasn’t Krys...

It seemed impossible that she was about to find her alykzhel with this man. Darian didn’t understand her people’s traditions. The same emotional tug that grew within her as she reached their destination was obviously not touching him in the slightest. He displayed only lust. “You have as much right to it as I, or it would not have been revealed to you.”

“Now, that I can deal with.” Darian pushed a button. “Lyn, you might want to take a look at this.”

When Lyn walked into the cabin and was speechless for a good minute as he surveyed the sunken city before them. Then he uttered two words. “Jurate’s palace.”

“We don’t have time to sit and admire the view,” Darian said, turning to her. “It’ll only take a few minutes.”


“We’ve got to get our gem.”

Dena realized he planned to go without her. “Lyn cannot. I have to go with you.”

“We don’t have a wetsuit that will fit you.”

“I have to go. The zhel will not reveal itself to Lyn.”

“It’s everywhere.”

“Will you two stop?” Lyn’s eyes moved quickly from Darian to the view before them and then to Dena. “Dena you aren’t getting into the water without scuba gear.”


“I’m on your side,” Lyn insisted. “Considering our situation, I should stay onboard in case we have to leave in a hurry. We’ll have to make my suit fit you.”

Dena soon found herself pushed and prodded by both men as they bound her into Lyn’s black wetsuit. The suit sagged on her frame horribly. “You look like an anorexic hippopotamus,” Lyn said.

Darian stripped down to his shorts, right in the middle of the room. Dena’s heart started pounding so loudly she was sure the men could hear. She watched as he pulled on the wetsuit. “Is that what a hippopotamus looks like all fleshed out?”

Darian snarled at her.

“What did I say?”

The corners of Lyn’s mouth turned up in amusement. “You gave him quite a compliment.”

“I did not.” That was obvious.

“You’re right. You didn’t. I saw a live hippo once at the IGZ.” Lyn described what the huge aquatic beasts from Old Earth looked like she giggled.

“What is high cheesy?”

“Huh? Oh, no!” Lyn explained the acronym for Intra-Galactic Zoo, and how the entire planet had been terraformed from a barren world to preserve life from across the known galaxy. “The Tomerian Federation holds dear the ideal of preservation. Without the IGZ, many life forms would now be extinct.”

“Why not preserve the original planets?”

“That isn’t always possible,” Darian said.

“It would be if star pirates would stay where they belong.”

“Lyask was peopled by colonists.”


Lyn held up his hand to stop her from speaking. “Through all human history there have been wars fought over land ownership, and there always will be. The fact remains that the Old Earth is incapable of sustaining all the human life that now exists in the galaxy. We should be thankful that some valued freedom or we wouldn’t be having this conversation now.”

The man’s words gave Dena a lot to think about. It was true her people weren’t originally from Lyask. She also realized that Lyn and Darian weren’t defending the soldiers who wanted to harm her planet. “I don’t know why I’m arguing with you. We can’t change the past.”

“She’s right, so if you two are done making zookaburras of yourselves--”

“We’re just talking,” Lyn said.

“And it’s taking so long the three of us will end up extinct life forms.”
~ Annalee Blysse

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