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The Bear Nesesames

April 5, 2010

A nice collection of Spring photos over on The Big Picture, including this very cute one of two bear cubs

bear

Medieval ideas about Bears #1:

The bear cub is born as a shapeless and eyeless lump of flesh, which the mother bear shapes into its proper form by licking it (the origin of the expression “to lick into shape”) (link)

Yōkainatomy

October 25, 2009

Yōkai Daizukai, an illustrated guide to yōkai authored by manga artist Shigeru Mizuki, features a collection of cutaway diagrams showing the anatomy of 85 traditional monsters from Japanese folklore.

mannendake

The Mannen-dake (”10,000-year bamboo”) is a bamboo-like monster that feeds on the souls of lost travelers camping in the woods.

Read on to find out more about the Mannen-dake, as well as:

  • the Kuro-kamikiri (Black Hair Cutter – it has the black hair, I don’t believe it has a preference as to the colour it cuts)
  • the Makura-gaeshi (Pillow Mover – rather worryingly the fact that it steals souls seems to be glossed over with greater focus put on its pranksome pillow-moving)
  • the Doro-ta-bō (Muddy Rice Field Man)
  • the Hyōsube
  • the Yanagi-baba (Willow Witch – fairly easy going compared to the rest)
  • the Fukuro-sage (a type of Tanuki, complete with prominent scrotum – something they failed to include in Super Mario)
  • Kasha (possible the rock-hardest of the bunch)
  • Bisha-ga-tsuku (named for it’s slusky snow sound – snow bunnies watch out)
  • and finally the would-be-cute-were-it-not-for-its-big-sharp-teeth, octopus-fearing Kijimunaa – hard wired for pranks

(via rocketboom)