A Giant Panda named Erxi received a car and a fruitcake on his ninth birthday but the joke's on him: the car's made of inedible bamboo logs.
Life's treated Erxi pretty good, all things considered. He's lived most of his life – and about a third of his expected lifespan – at a zoo in Jinan, a city in China's northeastern Shandong Province.
Giant Pandas live up to 20 years in the wild and 30 years – more or less – in captivity, so Erxi's got plenty of birthdays to look forward to. Yes, he (OK, the zoo keepers) celebrates birthdays... and his 9th took place last July 26th. Also yes, he has birthday parties, complete with gifts and a cake!
Sounds pretty good so far, huh? It does indeed, but ONLY so far. His “cake” was made of fruit, for one thing, and you know how folks feel about fruitcake. We'll let it slide 'cuz Giant Pandas are already kinda huge and feeding them human-style birthday cakes would make them obese. Unhealthy AND redundant is no way to go through life, Erxi. Anyway, at least Erxi can have his cake and eat it too.
His gift, on the other hand... looks awesome but beauty is only skin deep. Kudos to the zoo keepers from building a Jeep out of bamboo logs. Condolences to poor Erxi, who does NOT eat bamboo logs. Nope, Giant Pandas only eat shoots and leaves, sorta like disgruntled customers at Panda Express. Unlike Erxi, said customers can make their getaway via car. Sorry, Erxi... better luck next year. (via China Plus, Images via VCG)