In most ways, the human race has progressed greatly over the past 50-100 years. The pace at which we are inventing new ways of doing things, new ways of treating the sick, and new ways to communicate with others is nearly unparalleled to any other time in history (including the industrial revolution). It’s good to know we’re getting better and better all the time. Of course there are problems in our world, more than I can count. But we’re on our way.
That is, until just recently, when ABC News decided to post a story that sets the entire human race back farther than we can possibly comprehend. You all remember Paul from the World Cup: Paul was a visionary, psychic Octopus who correctly guessed the results of every single world cup soccer match in 2006.
Paul made us believe again… not in ourselves, because we were all too stupid to guess the results perfectly, but in the animal kingdom. Paul changed the world, and we as a media-ingesting society got as much of him as we could in his too-short 4-years on this earth. He died before the world cup this year, and no one was there to take his place. And it ended there… a perfect story, frozen in the history books (or history web pages I guess). The world was good.
And then, the 2011 NFL playoffs came. And some schmuck in Chicago decided to try to get the kind of attention Paul the Octopus got. Enter Ty the Sea Lion. Now, I’m sure you see the problem right from the get go here: Octopi are considered one of the smartest animals on earth. They can learn to open a jar or unlock at a door at a very early age, an age in which we humans are still drooling helplessly all over ourselves in a high chair we’re not remotely capable of escaping from.
Sea Lions, on the other hand, are generally considered one of the slower animals in “the kingdom.” Their intellectual limits seem to be their ability to hit a ball with their noses and smile sometimes… if you’re lucky, they’ll stick out their tongue; things any living thing on earth could do, plants and fungi included. And they’re like that their whole lives. No progression. Anyway, some dude in Chicago decided to try to steal Paul’s thunder and have his stupid sea lion pick the winner of the Chicago/Green Bay game. Note one more time that this sea lion is from Chicago. And so is its trainer.
Surprisingly, the sea lion stuck out its tongue at the Packers and smiled at the Bears, clearly indicating a Bears victory. Obvious bias from the trainer aside, this is unbelievable. Forget the picks of well-educated, knowledgeable football analysts who are picking the Packers to win almost resoundingly. We place our trust in a sea lion, and ABC News puts it on their front page. Paul’s different. Paul would have picked every single outcome of every single game in the regular season and playoffs, nearly impossible odds. Ty the sea lion gets to pick one game, 50/50 odds, after being well trained to hate the Packers with every ounce of his being. Yup… sounds unbiased to me.
Well, since we’ve got all our ears to the ground, hanging on every word a sea lion is saying, I’m going to let my dirty H&M work pants pick the outcome, and see what they think (we’re just moments away from kickoff). They’re about on the same intellectual level as this sea lion, so why not? I’ll throw them on the floor, let them settle and see what I get. Here we go:
A “G,” without a doubt. Luke’s pants pick Green Bay to win. Bring it on, Ty. The game’s just starting now, and if my and Ty’s predictions are any indication, I think it’ll be a good one. Just hope I don’t eat my words and lose to a sea lion of all creatures. You’ll never hear from me again if I do.
UPDATE: Ty’s career ended before it even started (a lot like the Eagles’ Kevin Kolb), failing to predict the outcome of the Bears/Packers game, an outcome my work pants could predict. My pants will try to predict the outcome of the Superbowl in one week’s time. Be there to see history made! Any news reporters interested in running the story can give me a shout. Young, aspiring journalists: this could launch your career.