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Gorging Tiger Gorge


Totally Awesome Picture of the Week 31


Well, we know why the tiger leaped.

If you saw a tree hanging over the Long River, stained sanguine with the sauce of your favorite meal, you might leap too. Especially if you were a folklore tiger hungry with the promise of having a relatively well-known landmark named after you.

But, perhaps the story is more complicated than a big cat jumping from a big cliff. Perhaps the feline didn’t leap at all but in the intoxicating aftermath of consuming dead-treed-animal after dead-treed-animal, the tiger forgot itself, loosened its claws and fell. What implications would arise from new evidence of a gluttonous blunder of this proportion? Is a majestic carnivore any less majestic when surprised by the pull of gravity? At some point during the approach of earth, do a suicidal leap and a fall not become the same thing?

OR, maybe that poor tiger never even made it over the edge. Lured close by the carcass tree, the tiger was captured by those clever barbarians. It didn’t take long before it was as docile as a domestic kitten. Later, fearing damage to the image of both involved parties, the Ba minority (then majority) invented the tiger leaping story so as to hide the fact that such a ferocious animal was so easily tamed and such a ferocious tribe had a soft spot for what should have been clothing.

Regardless of what the real story is (leaping over, leaping into, falling into, being domesticated, etc.), it is clear that this Tim Burton style Christmas tree is somehow related. Even if that isn’t really Tiger Leaping Gorge in the background and the tree is suffocating within many layers of inexpensive modern lead-based paint, not animal blood, and the bones are attached to the branches with plastic fishing line and that breed of cattle was only introduced to the region a few years ago and there are no cliffs below, just a gentle slope, it can logically be assumed that some responsibility for the tiger leaping incident belongs to this tree. Why else would there be a cheap imitation death tree standing in such an otherwise scenically beautiful location (in the general vicinity of said Tiger Leaping Gorge)? There is no logic but ours. Unless they just thought it would make a good ridiculous picture. Or we’re in China.

One Response to “Gorging Tiger Gorge”

  1. […] for the famous leaping tiger of Yunnan, his questionable fate is surely to be decided by the string of dams planned in his […]

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