Inner Monologue of Bandit the Panda

Bandit, the rascally baby panda born to Mei Xiang and Tian Tian at the National Zoo in Washington, DC, gives interested readers the inside track on his world.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Halloween Pics

Since you waited for it so patiently...

That's right, folks, people dressed as me for Halloween. Now, they also dressed as my mother, but we can forgive them for that.

There is one thing dead-on in that picture, and two things very much off. Can you spot them?

Dead-on: Mom holding a can of beer.

1st Thing That's Off: Bandit holding frou-frou glass of wine. Forget that Mom won't let me within 25 feet of her stash without launching into an all-out bath--I would NEVER drink wine without doing it to placate a chick.

2nd Thing That's Off: That Bandit is a girl. I don't think I need to explain myself further.

Those details aside, IMHO the costumes rule and the idea is even better.

H and Hobbitbuddy have both noted my regular beat-downs of my mother. The edge I have over her grows stronger with each passing day...

For the record-- H, I was running after my mother because she had threatened to destroy my vintage collection of Zepplin LPs if I didn't come in for my bath right then. That woman is relentless. I see where you're going with the whole "world class mother" business, but really--I'm barely four months old--does anyone appreciate their mother at that age?

I'm sure you're all wondering what I went as for Halloween, and since no one at the Zoo deigned to release a picture of me in costume to the public, I'll have to use this private-party pic (Ally, you ROCK).

All hail Bandit the Magnificent, Sultan of America. H you are so right. This chick digs me. Look at her gazing at my Turban of Awe-Inspiring Magnificence.

Being me on a daily basis rules more than anything has ever ruled in the history of the world.



At 9:36 PM, Anonymous H said...

ROFLMAO!!! Oh God, it should be illegal to laugh this hard. Ally, great picture of "Bandit the Magnificent". I want to ask you where you got those 2 pics from but something tells me its an inside job so I'll just wonder and be jealous.

You know Bandit, you're lucky I'm in NY, because if I worked at the zoo you would be smothered with kisses on a daily basis. I could never resist, ever. (and I don't think they resist either when the camera is looking the other way!)


At 10:08 PM, Anonymous Ally said...

All in a day's work, my darlings, all in a day's work. It's easy to make someone as hot and badass as Bandit look good.

At 1:23 PM, Anonymous Wingy said...

I am the girl in the photo. While I will concede that I am a girl, and I know you are not, I wasn't drinking frou frou wine. It was actually vodka, but it as a special Halloween goblet with skulls and spiders on it. So, while I will never be as badass as you, I don't want you to think I would dare denigrate your image with such blatant girly girl behavior.

At 10:43 PM, Blogger hobbitbuddy said...

Your servants have observed you gnawing on the nasty bamboo your Mom pulls into your room to make up your bed. This greatly disturbs me. You shouldn't have to chew on your bed. Therefore, I am sending you my first culinary masterpiece,suitable for a four month old with brand new teeth (or toofs in baby talk): panda milk ice cream with softened FRESH bamboo bits. We humans have something similar called Panda Paws ice cream (we use teeny peanut butter cups instead of REAL panda paws). Hope you enjoy.

At 10:52 PM, Blogger hobbitbuddy said...

I forgot... to the other Bandit lovers: who wants to make a bet that at least one person who sees Bandit at the Panda House this weekend will burst into tears at the sight of such perfect adorableness? Or faint... or have a Holy Ghost moment?

At 12:05 PM, Anonymous H said...


My guess is scream and faint (a la Beatles fame).

Did you see yesterday he stood up on his hind legs and looked over the top of Mei's platform? He was so cute, he put his little paw up.

So Mr. Cuteness has visiting hours this weekend then? grrr I have to get myself down there before he's deported lol (which will seriously break my heart but I'm not going to think about it).


At 12:32 PM, Blogger hobbitbuddy said...

We HAVE to stop the zoo from deporting him when he's two. I suggest we organize a protest to express our extreme displeasure at Bandit, a native born citizen of the U.S. of A, being sent to a country full of communists. If the sign waving and shouts of "Hell no, he won't go" doesn't work, then I'm afraid we might have to resort to...gulp...extreme trying to buy Bandit from China. Hey, money talks!
Every time I watch Pandacam Bandit is sleeping. I NEVER get to see him acting cute (grump, grump).

At 7:13 PM, Anonymous H said...


He sleeps 95% of the day so don't feel bad. But I noticed they put a new video clip up today (just when I was thinking they were stingy with them - they must be reading my mind). He looks so cute in that new photo! I cannot believe how big he got. He's HUGE and totally adorable, especially in that first shot of him on that video.

I do feel bad about "deportation" but the Chinese absolutely love their Panda's and take such good care of them and a deal is a deal. I wouldn't want to be those keepers when he goes, their hearts will never recover. Hey, 2 years is a long time, he may stay! Who knows. Hope for the best. :)


At 9:39 PM, Blogger hobbitbuddy said...

I still think everyone in the US should contibute $1 toward buying Bandit from China. If we all did that, we could give the Chinese $275,000,000. That's a lot to spend for a bear, but he's worth it!

At 4:23 PM, Anonymous H said...


Who knows, it might end up that he stays! I would chip in.

Today he was wandering around the exhibit for quite awhile. Just meandering within a small area. Nothing spectacular, just sniffing away...until Mom came along lol

I saw him on Good Morning America too! It was a news brief about him getting another shot (and he barked) so cute.

I've seen the pictures of the San Diego panda, she's getting cuter, but no where near the looks of Bandit. Maybe he will forever be my "baseline" and from there nothing will ever measure up. Its remarkable that Pandas could look so different. I never thought that was possible.

I left a note for Bandit to put quotes on his pictures. I think we should know what he's thinking at those moments, don't you?

Anyway! Have fun Panda gazing. :)


At 10:58 PM, Blogger hobbitbuddy said...

From almost the moment he was born, Bandit has oozed charisma from every pore. There are human celebrities who don't have a fraction of the charm Bandit has. Plus, he plays to the cameras! He knows he's gorgeous! Su Lin, bless her heart, does not photograph well (or maybe it's the angles the photog gets when shooting pictures of her). She's much cuter live. I think once she gains more bulk her looks will improve. Right now, she sort of homely-cute if a panda CAN be homely. Bandit is definitely champ in the looks department. The newest pictures from Bandit's exam are so adorable I put the one of him sitting with his head tilted to the side up as my screensaver.
I didn't see the GMA story on Bandit (I watch Today), but I did see a story about him on FOX News a couple days ago. Even the man reading the news had a goofy grin on his face after watching the footage of Bandit walking.
I'd like to know what Bandit was thinking in every picture he's in. I hope he takes your suggestion.

At 8:47 AM, Anonymous H said...

I can't believe this, last night Mei took Bandit out of the den around 8:30 and didn't return! At least during the time I checked back. He still wasn't there an hour later at least. It's almost like she knows the keepers aren't around so she'll take him out there on her terms.

Right now he's having his debut but he's torturing the guests. He's hanging out between the two exhibits, right in the doorway so its hard to see him. (I mean RIGHT in the doorway lol). But he sticks his butt out now and then. He's sooooo cute. Well, now he's giving them a bit of fur so its getting better. No fainting as far as I can see yet!

I can't believe I'm addicted to a panda, I never gave them the time of day until Mei gave birth. I wonder where he slept last night. Is there a 12 step program for panda addiction? LOL

oh god...he's reaching up to some rocks and sniffing them. He's playing to the camera all right! Using all his moves lol. What a ham :)


At 12:10 AM, Blogger hobbitbuddy said...

I am a veteran panda watcher having oohed and ahhed over Hua Mei and Mei Sheng in San Diego and now Su Lin, but Bandit is just special. I am completely besotted with him. I think we East Coasters love him so much because he's our first "East Coast" panda cub, and we stand a better than average shot of seeing him in person than we do the "West Coast" panda babies. For example,I only live six hours away from DC, I have relatives who live in the DC area who'd put me up, so it'd be a pretty cheap trip for me to make to see Bandit at the zoo. I plan on making the pilgrimage before Bandit is deported. I'd LOVE to be there for his outside debut in December. That would be the thrill of my life. Unfortunately, my teaching schedule is just too hectic right now for that to happen. Oh well...

At 6:34 AM, Anonymous H said...


Then you're a long time expert on Panda's! I had been watching the Cheetahs for a while and would bounce back and forth sometimes between the Cheetah cubs and Mei Xiang (pre-bandit). I'm working on a project here at home and need something to break the boredom while working on the computer. One night I was watching her and thought, gosh, she's really acting weird, whats up with her. I had pretty much disregarded the pregnant bit as they said that was rare and hard to predict. The next morning when I woke up I found out she had given birth during the night. I was thrilled and addiction set in.

I have a million questions that I don't see answered on the web site, but I guess they can't get to everything. Mostly I wonder, does the baby choose to eat the bamboo based on instinct or just watching the mother. Also, sometimes I see him follow her out of the den and sometimes he stays behind. How does he know when to stay? If you know that I'd love to know lol

I've been watching the last few days and saw some funny things. Once Bandit was torturing Mei, biting her backside and being an all around annoying toddler. She turned and swatted him. I cracked up. Another time he came out and sat playing with the bamboo as she ate. I had another question but that's slipped my mind at the moment. Maybe you know the answer to those, who knows.

Anyway, I'm glad to find another addict to share this with lol

Take care!

At 11:14 AM, Anonymous H said...

Remembered the other questions! Did Mei switch to the new den by choice or did the Zoo close off the original den?

And Bandit, you better get your butt back in gear here or I'll find another place for my laughs. :)



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