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It's a Good Day to Be a Wombat
October 21, 2009 4:29 AM   Subscribe

If you're looking for something to celebrate on October 22nd that is NOT CAPS LOCK DAY or the release of Windows7, may I suggest Wombat Day? Wombats* are fascinating creatures (scroll down to "Wildlife"), with marsupial pouches, sharp digging claws, unique cube-shaped feces** and a preferred self-defense method of crushing attackers with their butts.

There are three species of Wombat, one of which is critically endangered (the others not so much) but a corporate sponsor is stepping in to help.

The Wombat name has been adopted by a rock band from Liverpool (who dance to Joy Division), 'the original Australian search engine', the "Women's Mountain Bike & Tea Society" AND "Women of Beauty and Temptation", a custom car kit (formerly called the Hummbug), an eco-blogger for Fortune and both a dwarf galaxy and a team looking for things like that. And the baby wombat's resemblence to a former Chairman of the Federal Reserve was briefly a web meme. And don't forget the oddly-rendered wombats of the Wombania comic by the originator of Wombat Day.

And then there are the various incarnations of the superhero Wombatman, from a very minor character in the '80s cartoon "Captain N: the Game Master" (short clip) (psychedelic remix), to a pivotal player in the superhero webcomic "Magellan" to the short film "Wombatman Begins". Plus the similarly heroic "Combat Wombat". So let us dedicate October 22nd to letting the wombat cross the road... but not in all caps, please.

*NOT to be confused with Wombles
**Which is why nobody is ever called Wombatshit Crazy
posted by wendell (52 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
You forgot about Digger, written by Ursula Vernon, a webcomic about a wombat who gets unwillingly dragged into a mystical adventure complete with a youthful hag, vampire squash, hyena matriarchies, the great god Ganesh (or at least a manifestation of him) and the ShadowChild. New pages go up on Tuesday/Thursday.
posted by TrishaLynn at 4:37 AM on October 21, 2009 [5 favorites]


a preferred self-defense method of crushing attackers with their butts.

no pictures?
posted by jammy at 4:51 AM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]


Don't forget that the wombat was Australia's preferred Olympic mascot.
posted by Serial Killer Slumber Party at 5:11 AM on October 21, 2009


*NOT to be confused with Wombles
Indeed.
posted by a womble is an active kind of sloth at 5:33 AM on October 21, 2009 [3 favorites]


Windows 7 release date is also CAPS LOCK day? That is awesome!
posted by PenDevil at 5:40 AM on October 21, 2009


Well I already love my Windows 7 install. Time to pump some Wombats!
posted by theButterFly at 5:48 AM on October 21, 2009


When startled, a wombat will literally shit bricks.
posted by Ritchie at 5:48 AM on October 21, 2009 [11 favorites]


Thank you, TritiaLynn for Digger. I do appreciate other MeFites bringing up good stuff I didn't fit into a wide-topic post like this, but I must admit I am embarrassed that I had never discovered this gem in my last 3 years of webcomic surfing. I'll be celebrating Wombat Day by digging into Digger's archives.

And if anybody brings a wombat to a Windows7 Party... I want pictures!
posted by wendell at 5:52 AM on October 21, 2009


Ahh wikipedia, not only do you provide me with photographs of certified wombat feces, but you also give me the GPS coordinates just in case I want to go see it for myself. Excellent. The 21st century really is everything I ever wanted except for the jetpacks and flying cars....
posted by 1f2frfbf at 5:54 AM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]




Wombats. I Like Wombats. Wombase Are Keen.

And I'm WarminG UP FoR CapS LocK DaY.
posted by eriko at 6:01 AM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]


I went to a Wombats concert last summer and they were pretty good.

I would have been way more impressed if I had known they produced square feces.
posted by mmmbacon at 6:01 AM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]


This may be the first time this has ever happened, but I sort of actually want to see an animal take a shit now. Just so I can see how it does that. Like, does it have some kind of trash-compactor thing back there? A little door-flap that opens? I feel like there should be some kind of square-peg-round-hole joke here. THAT'S SOME CRAZY SHIT.*

*In honor of ALL CAPS DAY/Windows 7
posted by This Guy at 6:02 AM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]


WENDELL I THINK PERHAPS YOU ARE CONFUSED FOR YOU ARE SUGGESTING PEOPLE SHOULD NOT CELEBRATE INTERNATIONAL CAPS LOCK DAY TOMORROW AND INSTEAD CELEBRATE SOMETHING ABOUT WOMBATS OR WINDOWS.

CAPS LOCK DAY IS CAPS LOCK DAY!!

THERE IS NO OTHER CELEBRATION.

EVERYONE GET TOGETHER AND WELCOME OUR UPCOMING CAPS LOCK DAY.

GOD DAMN MY THROAT HURTS.

ALSO YOU HAVE BEEN TAUGHT WRONG -- TIME CUBE = WIN, 4 SIDES BABY.
posted by cavalier at 6:02 AM on October 21, 2009


I may sound old and cranky (perhaps because I am) but people are going to celebrate the launch of Windows 7? Really?

Oh, and wombats are awesome! So is Digger.
posted by tommasz at 6:12 AM on October 21, 2009


no. just no. no caps lock. not in this thread. don't make me go all quonsar on your ass.
posted by wendell at 6:16 AM on October 21, 2009


The greatest part of this post is easily this...title.

CERTIFIED.

I will never think of "Certification Authority" in quite the same way again.
posted by effugas at 6:27 AM on October 21, 2009


ALSO YOU HAVE BEEN TAUGHT WRONG -- TIME CUBE = WIN, 4 SIDES BABY.

Time cube...cube poop...so what you're saying is that time is poop and long-form sausage-shaped poop is educated-stupid? 4-sided cube-time-poop is the truth?

It all makes sense! WINDOWS 7 IS ANTI-4-SIDED TIME POOP PROPAGANDA!*

*Wake up, sheeple!

fnord

posted by explosion at 6:45 AM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]


Demanded carrots. No response.
posted by hawthorne at 6:50 AM on October 21, 2009 [2 favorites]


This Digger thing is wonderful. How has there never been an AskMeFi on webcomics with marsupials and wry spiritual explorations before? I mean, this makes LolCats and Cru the Dwarf seem ... not very sophisticated.
posted by macross city flaneur at 7:31 AM on October 21, 2009


... by which I meant to say, "makes LolCats and Cru the Dwarf seem like a certified brick of square faeces."
posted by macross city flaneur at 7:33 AM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]


Is certifying feces a job? SIGN ME UP!

John Darnielle stroking a wombat.
posted by mrgrimm at 7:54 AM on October 21, 2009


The number one killer of Wombats? Terrible, terrible hemorrhoids.

windows SEVEN has FOUR SIDES
posted by zippy at 8:14 AM on October 21, 2009


The only difference* I can see between wombat feces and NutraLoaf is that the feces is on the open ground.


Aside from the certification, of course. Who would certify NutraLoaf?
posted by notashroom at 8:40 AM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]


Let's celebrate by getting drunk on the docks!
posted by grouse at 8:49 AM on October 21, 2009


Could someone please what evolutionary advantage wombats who shit cubical feces had over ur-wombats who back in the day took nice normal shits?
posted by rdr at 9:27 AM on October 21, 2009


You had me at cube shaped feces.
posted by vapidave at 9:28 AM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]


wombat - waste of money, brains and time
posted by pyramid termite at 9:28 AM on October 21, 2009


Wombat-fu (jpg, NSFWombats)
posted by zippy at 9:48 AM on October 21, 2009


Stroked the Wombat.
He just Stroked the Wombat.
Oh no! She just can't stop Stroking the Wombat.
Oh yeah last night I was Stroking the Wombat.
Stroke the Wombat, Stroke the Wombat, Stroke the Wombat.
posted by pianomover at 9:53 AM on October 21, 2009


I just like the 'tude displayed by the silhouette guy in the comparison size photo.

"Yeah, I'm chilling with a wombat. What of it?"
posted by clerestory at 9:57 AM on October 21, 2009 [2 favorites]


Has it struck anyone else that The Wombles might just be a kind of furry, imperial analogue to The Monkees?
posted by bicyclefish at 9:59 AM on October 21, 2009


Best post ever.
posted by w0mbat at 10:22 AM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]


The arse-based self-defense is true.
If a dingo chases a wombat into the tunnel where the wombat lives, the wombat will crush the dingo's head against the roof of the tunnel with his bum. The wombat's rear end is armored with a big plate of bone under the skin. I've knocked on a wombat's bum and it's like knocking on a door.
posted by w0mbat at 10:27 AM on October 21, 2009 [1 favorite]


Also they can run up to 30km/h in rare situations and koala bears can swim from tree to tree in floods.
posted by Submiqent at 10:42 AM on October 21, 2009


John Darnielle stroking a wombat.

I was wondering if that would get posted. I took that photo, at an animal park near Perth. The internet seems to love it; I should dig up the others from that wombat encounter.
posted by statolith at 10:48 AM on October 21, 2009 [2 favorites]


This is an awesome post.

When the wombat comes he will find me gone.

Derail about marmots!
posted by marxchivist at 11:12 AM on October 21, 2009


I was really hoping the Combat Wombat link was going to have video of cool old dirt bikes.

I am apparently far too old and have too much of a one track mind...
posted by 1f2frfbf at 11:38 AM on October 21, 2009




Which is why nobody is ever called Wombatshit Crazy

What about Timecube?
posted by UbuRoivas at 12:57 PM on October 21, 2009


Don't forget that the wombat was Australia's preferred Olympic mascot.

In case anybody didn't follow the link, Serial Killer Slumber Party was referring to Fatso the Fat-Arsed Wombat, created by a satirical sportscasting duo, in opposition to the poxy official mascots: Syd, Ollie, and Dickhead.

Not unlike Aussies' preference for Waltzing Matilda as the unofficial national anthem, Fatso was far more popular than the official mascots, and has been immortalised in a sculpture at Sydney's Olympic Park.

And yes, he always appeared on Roy & HG's Olympic show with his arse to the camera, cheekily mooning the audience.
posted by UbuRoivas at 1:08 PM on October 21, 2009


Also they can run up to 30km/h in rare situations and koala bears can swim from tree to tree in floods.

FTFY. It's one of my pet peeves.
posted by nml at 1:31 PM on October 21, 2009


WANT! Any Aussie MeFites able to ship me one?
posted by infinitywaltz at 1:42 PM on October 21, 2009


this reminds me of the time I was in a short-lived punk rock band called Combat Wombat. We were terrible.
posted by Jon_Evil at 2:14 PM on October 21, 2009


short-lived punk rock band?

there's a Combat Wombat group that shows up at community festivals etc in Australia, doing songs about environmental issues, aboriginal rights and so on. as far as i can tell, they travel the country in a Kombi van, most likely fuelled by recycled cooking oil, but only if the restaurant was vegan.

only, they're more hiphop than punk, and you seem to be american, so i'm guessing that wasn't your band.
posted by UbuRoivas at 4:04 PM on October 21, 2009


Wombats look surprisingly like furry Moomintrolls.
posted by jrochest at 4:11 PM on October 21, 2009


obligatory Metafilter: Stroking the wombat.
or maybe
Metafilter: You had me at cubed feces.
or perhaps
Metafilter: Stroking the wombat waiting for the cubed feces. ?
I dunno, this is just too much.
posted by Nauip at 4:12 PM on October 21, 2009


Ken Henry, Secretary of the Treasury, one of Australia's most senior bureaucrats, has a thing for wombats. There was a minor political flap a few months back because he took five weeks of leave from work to do conservation work with endangered hairy-nosed wombats.
posted by the duck by the oboe at 4:17 PM on October 21, 2009


I'd just stepped out the patio door when I saw a squarish brown thing race down the long lawn. Then I heard a thump! pause, grunt, thump thump!! I peaked around the corner and spied two wombats going head-to-head in a wombat jousting match. After a couple of more whumps! the smaller of the two turned tail and ran back up the lawn, past me, and around the high side of the patio wall, the larger one hot on its heels. Man could they move!

The chase went on, down the steps to the path alongside the house then round the back of the clothesline before ending up on the long lawn again. Bigger wombat stopped in the middle and huffed and puffed, smaller wombat backed up a few metres and then ran head first again at the larger. THUMP!! Smaller wombat bounced off and was floored. I could almost see a ring of stars around his head. But within moments he was back up and racing away, closely followed by the big guy. He chased him up the lawn and down the dirt track to the river making with loud bellowing grunts. Never seen anything like it.

A few wombat data points.
You'll find their faeces on flat topped rocks. Wombats like to shit on a small pedestal, not straight on to the ground.
If you find a large (1/2 metre) tunnelled hole in the ground and roll a small rock down it, you may be scared by the amplified bellowing growl that will emanate in return. I know I have been.
If you befriend a baby wombat and raise it, then let it return to the wild near your house, it will do its darnedest to get back 'home' including digging under your (non-slab) house and breaking through your floorboards, breaking straight through your weatherboards or timber door, or crashing straight through your glass slider.

They be determined buggers.
posted by Kerasia at 5:21 PM on October 21, 2009 [5 favorites]


Thanks for the True Tales of Wombats, Kerasia, a nice return to reality after a couple hours going through the epic tale of Digger, who is more of a cynical engineer-type... kind of like Alice in the Dilbert comics but with better hair.

And I am so NOT surprised that there have been more than one band called Combat Wombat; when I researched the post, I googled Combat Wombat and found the motorcycles (but I already had the wombat car and mountain bike club) and enough other stuff for another post, but I'll save that for next year.

Wombat IS a cool name (is there ANYTHING on the Web Lore Sjöberg didn't do first?) and the fact that the name rhymes with Combat is just one reason.

Now, how many environmental laws would I break if I tried to introduce wombats into the wilds of California?
posted by wendell at 7:04 PM on October 21, 2009


Then there were the Scarlet Wombats. Obscure. Not likely you'd have ever heard of them. They weren't a band, not really a gang. Just these guys, you know? But when Zelda came out, you were assured of a good time.
posted by Goofyy at 3:35 AM on October 22, 2009


Now, how many environmental laws would I break if I tried to introduce wombats into the wilds of California?

I DO NOT KNOW BUT I WILL BE HAPPY TO HELP YOU! E-MAIL IS IN THE PROFILE!
posted by infinitywaltz at 2:50 PM on October 22, 2009


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