After a torrid absence from panda presence for nigh on a year, founder Phil Reeks has recently twice found himself deep in the throes of field research. Asked to comment, the RPC’s spiritual leader and budding scam artist had the following to say:
”It can be tough sometimes. At Bristol Zoo I’m not exaggerating when I say one panda didn’t move for eleven hours, whilst the other merely lulled about for maybe half hour. This led me to believe that they were definitely of the sleepy subspecies.”
”Paradise Wildlife Park proved more fruitful. Entering the area, I could barely contain my excitement as one was holding bamboo and eating it like a red panda. High in the tree above it rested another sleepy panda.”
”Viewing peaked around feeding time, whereby one ‘expert’ gave a talk to the public. Although tempted to interject, there are those who believe my views and theories to be nonsense, the ramblings of an idiot whose only source of information remains Youtube. A valid point, actually."
”However, my time not totally wasted. I discovered the existence of panda cakes, whilst I have found myself to have more in common with our little red amigos than previously thought. For example, playing dead in the wild works similarly in captivity but is due to hordes of screaming, irritating kids. That disdain we definitely share.”
”In addition, it does appear that the cult has potential. For instance, in my many hours tracking the two sleepy pandas in Bristol, I heard at least eight cries of 'awwww', as well as a few fits of surprised laughter. Admittedly most of these were at the display picture."
"Minor setbacks though, are mere fuel for a panda enthusiast such as myself. In a month's time, the RPC will be going international and taking over Copenhagen Zoo. The rumours of business cards I neither confirm nor deny currently."
What is a worry, is the news that a good friend of the red panda has been named as the planet's most endangered mammal, and indeed vertebrate: the lemur. What is a cult here, may have to be a crusade there.
For information on another friend, the slow loris, kindly divert your attention here.