I Don't Know if This Makes Me Feel Better or Worse (Panda Dept - UPDATED)

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[See surprising UPDATE below!!] Chinese panda-caretakers at the reserve in Wolong (which I wrote about, just before it was heavily damaged in the Sichuan earthquake of 2008) are wearing panda suits to handle baby pandas without getting them too accustomed to the human form.

PandaHunt.jpg

So says GoChengdoo.com.  I am not sure I really believe this. Actually, I am pretty sure I don't. Have I ever seen a real panda walking around like that? But the picture is too weird to resist. Another slightly more plausible pic at GoChengdoo. This is in the tradition of "the kind of thing I miss about China."

UPDATE: Hmmm. It appears that this could be true. GoChengdoo links to the Chinese site QQ, which was down when I tried it earlier. Right at the moment it is up, with some semi-plausible shots of Chinese people in panda suits. One thing I learned, with admiration, while in China: anything is possible. Perhaps even this.  QQ shot of researcher:

QqPanda.jpg

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James Fallows is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and has written for the magazine since the late 1970s. He has reported extensively from outside the United States and once worked as President Carter's chief speechwriter. His latest book is China Airborne. More

James Fallows is based in Washington as a national correspondent for The Atlantic. He has worked for the magazine for nearly 30 years and in that time has also lived in Seattle, Berkeley, Austin, Tokyo, Kuala Lumpur, Shanghai, and Beijing. He was raised in Redlands, California, received his undergraduate degree in American history and literature from Harvard, and received a graduate degree in economics from Oxford as a Rhodes scholar. In addition to working for The Atlantic, he has spent two years as chief White House speechwriter for Jimmy Carter, two years as the editor of US News & World Report, and six months as a program designer at Microsoft. He is an instrument-rated private pilot. He is also now the chair in U.S. media at the U.S. Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, in Australia.

Fallows has been a finalist for the National Magazine Award five times and has won once; he has also won the American Book Award for nonfiction and a N.Y. Emmy award for the documentary series Doing Business in China. He was the founding chairman of the New America Foundation. His recent books Blind Into Baghdad (2006) and Postcards From Tomorrow Square (2009) are based on his writings for The Atlantic. His latest book is China Airborne. He is married to Deborah Fallows, author of the recent book Dreaming in Chinese. They have two married sons.

Fallows welcomes and frequently quotes from reader mail sent via the "Email" button below. Unless you specify otherwise, we consider any incoming mail available for possible quotation -- but not with the sender's real name unless you explicitly state that it may be used. If you are wondering why Fallows does not use a "Comments" field below his posts, please see previous explanations here and here.
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