Thursday, June 30, 2016

For victory and for the Mara!

If it wasn’t already apparent, we RAs spend an awful lot of time together in the car (and everywhere else). That means we exhaust all your typical conversation topics pretty quickly, and move right along into the truly bizarre. One of my favorites is a topic we’ve debated many times: if you had to ride a Mara animal into battle (a la the Riders of Rohan galloping into Helms Deep), which would you choose? Obviously this is a very deep scientific question that contains a lot of nuance, so I’ve broken down some of the top contenders for your convenience.

Eland (Erin’s choice)
Intimidatingly large
Able to jump 8-10 feet in the air from a standstill. Arguably not useful for a battle scenario, but really awesome anyway
Impressive horns
Pre-equipped with tassels for that “parade armor” look
Horns are pointed directly at the rider’s face, instead of at the enemy. Could possibly be remedied by strategic placement of tennis balls at the end of the horns.
Very shy. Much more likely to flee the battle than charge into the middle of it

Giraffe (Robyn’s choice)
Excellent view of battlefield
Enemy can’t reach you
Built-in slow motion run for maximum cool factor
Enemy can’t reach you, but you can’t reach the enemy either. Long range weaponry recommended
Weirdly-shaped back. Where do you put a saddle?
If you fall, it’s a loooong way down

Waterbuck (Emily’s choice)
Super majestic
Harder to be intimidating when your steed has a heart for a nose

Baby zebra not included in battle scenario
Basically a horse. Wouldn’t even have to design a new type of saddle.
Aggressive in defense of their herd. Hopefully this would carry over to the battlefield
Notoriously difficult to tame.

Can run forever without getting tired
Built-in weaponry
Too short to comfortably ride. Enemy would probably laugh at you and your dragging toes. Actually, that might make this cycle back around to a pro again, if enemy is too busy laughing at you to properly defend themselves.

Don't let the calm demeanors fool you. They're trying to lure you into a false sense of security.

The verdict? Maybe we should stick to horses and Land Cruisers. But it’s fun to think about, isn’t it?

1 comment:

Jack Grady said...

I think a critical pro for riding a hyena would that you would look like a warg rider from lord of the rings.

Michigan State University | College of Natural Science