2006_02_hailbutterstick.jpgIt's been too long since our last panda post, so we must congratulate our DC-based blog, DCist, for managing to give baby panda Tai Shan his American nickname, Butterstick. The National Zoo's announcement about their "Black and White Night" benefit included mention of "Butterstick" in case people didn't know who Tai Shan was and the tagline, "Everything goes better with Butter." It sure does, especially when it's a mound of fuzz leaving scent markings near city sewer lines (we're not making this up!). And the Washington Post confirmed the National Zoo's move, with a quote from zoo spokesman Peper Long:

"It's not an official acknowledgment. We still call him Tai Shan. But we realize people all over the world love this little guy and probably have a variety of nicknames for him -- and this is a very popular one."

This serves as inspiration to Gothamist: If DCist can get the National Zoo to "unofficially acknowledge" Butterstick, then surely Gothamist can get the Wildlife Conservation Society to unofficially take up the causes of bringing a panda or three to New York City? We're sure many New Yorkers would help underwrite that project. And nicknames that we like are "Bacon Bottom," "Lard Pocket," and "Fuzzy Monster."

Reuters has video of a panda kindergarten that opened in China. You are warned: You might go crazy trying to figure out how you can book a flight to Sichuan to see the pandakinder in action. [Thanks to our many friends who emailed us about this video!] And you can get Obey Butterstick gear here.