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random saturday snippets

1. So for fans of Buffy the Vampire Slayer who are also into Tarot cards, there's something new that's just for you! A Buffy-themed Tarot deck. Heh.

2. Elephant painters

I got this vid in the mail recently, and was amazed that an elephant would paint itself, a self-portrait, if you will. Of course, when watching it on the YouTube website itself, very quickly killed that amazement, because you know how they have a list of related vids in the sidebar? Yeah, there were loads of similar vids: obviously this was a show put on for tourists, so these painting sessions probably happen daily, perhaps even a few times in a day.

So I started wondering if the elephants were truly being creative, or if they'd been trained (read: forced) to make such paintings. Would the same elephant churn out the same painting every day, every time, or do they have a little bit of artistic leeway every time they are placed in front of the canvas?

And even better - how much do they sell these painting for, because I'm sure many people would like to display "the masterpiece I saw being created while in Chiang Mai". Just how profitable is this venture?

All questions I will just leave hanging ... but here's another vid of (the same? different? I certainly wouldn't know how to tell...) an elephant, obviously a different time/day as the first vid, what with different colored paper and all.. and guess what? It's essentially the same image being drawn. So that flower held aloft by the trunk kinda loses its charm the second time around, knowing it's not a spontaneous thing.

And leaves me with a sour taste in the mouth.

Oh wait, have I brushed my teeth yet today?

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