Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Octopus and Squirrel

There were two notable deaths this week that probably went unnoticed. 


First, there was Paul, the Octopus, who gained worldwide fame this year by correctly forecasting the outcome of eight World Cup soccer matches including the final in this year's championship. Paul died peacefully of natural causes a couple of days ago. He was about two years old. 


During the World Cup in South Africa in June and July, TV channels around the world provided live coverage of Paul's forecasts, made by picking a tasty mussel from one of two transparent boxes emblazoned with the national flags of the two opposing teams. 
Paul making a Prediction
There was a one in 256 chance that he would get all eight predictions right. Paul's success rate confounded mathematicians, angered bookmakers and spooked hundreds of millions of football fans around the world. Bon Voyage, Paul.





And then, there was the passing of Alex Anderson, the cartoonist who first drew Rocky the flying squirrel and his buddy, the bumbling moose Bullwinkle. Mr. Anderson died last Friday. He was 90.

As a kid, I loved the Rocky and Bullwinkle Show. I remember pretending to be Rocky. I would wear sunglasses (my crude goggles) and then run around the house as if flying like that amazing squirrel. Ah, those were the days. Mr. Anderson´s talent and creativity will be missed. 





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