working at the zoo

Today at the zoo

Today while working my volunteer shift at tigers, I had a mom and her daughter(probably my age) come up and were looking up at the tigers. The mom pointedly asked if the tiger was unhappy, because he had been pretty focused on the back gate, where the keepers work. I explained to her that because the keepers were nearby that he, like some of our other animals, would become fixated on them and it doesn’t necessarily indicate a distressed or unhappy animal. The mom then says to the daughter “see, do you feel better?” And she must have seen the curiosity on my face because the mom says “she hasn’t been to a zoo in who knows how long, i had to drag her to come.” Indicating that she wasn’t a fan of zoos.

Now up until now the daughter hadn’t made eye contact at all and just looked unhappy to be there. Because her obvious perception was that the animals were bored and unhappy, I started explaining the different enrichment we use, the fact we use perfumes and spices like cinnamon to keep them stimulated. And she laughed in surprise for the first time and looked at me: “wait really?” And I went on to explain training and even our ultrasound trained polar bear, our conservation efforts, our nonprofit status, and finally that she was contributing to us helping save species just by coming. She was helping us save the very tiger that she was concerned for at the beginning, and I thanked her for helping us save tigers and so so many other animals from extinction. By the end of it, she was moved to tears and hugged me, thanking me for changing her view on zoos, and that she’d had no idea we were making such an impact.

This is exactly why I do this. This is why good zoos matter. And this is what keeps me working towards my zoo career.


Throwing it back to 2012 and 2 bundles of jaguar joy. 😻😻 As jaguar numbers decline, each birth in the Species Survival Plan (SSP) helps to establish an assurance population for animals in danger of becoming extinct. Wild jaguars are in serious trouble. Over 30% of the rain forests they call home have been destroyed—and when the rain forests disappear, jaguars disappear. Even though we’re hard at work at the San Diego Zoo, we’re also busy on the front lines of jaguar conservation. Be a hero for wildlife and support our efforts:

Today I walk into work and there are a ton of people in my building and it’s kind of a mess and everyone is talking and I sort of just blurt out:

“Man, it’s a zoo in here!”

Everyone stopped and looked at me as though I had 2 heads.

Then I realized.

I work at a zoo.

yes, i think the zoo logic works as a metaphor for homeworld. steven is kind of the “rose” of the episode - the first one to question “but what if i don’t want to listen to the voices?”.

Originally posted by centipeetle-dee

of course, nobody gets him. the voices provide for us! they do everything to make us happy, as long as we listen! you should want to listen to the voices!

but that doesn’t work when what you want isn’t what the voices want. the voices are trying, yes, but people are not the same. not every gem wants to fulfill their purpose, unlike what the diamonds might think.

and that’s good! that ties into a huge theme of the whole show: safety and consistency vs change and freedom. 

having one, defined purpose can be reassuring for some - as long as you do that, you’re gonna be safe. nothing will ever change, others will provide for you and you’ll always know what you’re supposed to do. nothing will ever hurt or be scary. everything is safe and predictable.

Originally posted by doafhat

others don’t want that. they want to take risks and see what else life has to offer. abandoning your “purpose” means cutting ties with that safety net, and in the crystal gems’ case, you might even have to fight for freedom. 

this will scare the old society - what if others follow suit, and the whole system falls apart because nobody will follow orders or do their job? 

suddenly, you have a gem war on your hands. 

ATTENTION WORLD: Tapping on the window will NOT make the sea turtle come over to you

Pro tip: It also doesn’t work for sharks, fish, stingrays, or any other animal at a zoo or aquarium. Please stop pestering my animals.

that episode was unsettling. the gems probably didn’t had bad intentions with the humans… but they only have a bare-bones understanding of what they need. they have no concept of the difference between “happy” and “healthy” - my dogs will be happy if i feed them chocolate, but that doesn’t mean it’s good for them. 

humans need to experience pain and consequences. they need to be in more than one place. they need choices. gems don’t… get that. because it doesn’t apply to them, and hey, they seem happy enough! just tell them to obey the little voices!

except they have no understanding of their own emotions. greg rejects them? they lunge for him and bawl their eyes out. they become creatures of pure emotion, who haven’t been taught to logically work through those feelings, or empathize with the person saying no. 

basically, the zoo is… a zoo. their current environment might be “safe”, but it’s put them in a state where they don’t know how to survive without it. 


So, I’ve got this idea that quartz’s aren’t quite as special as Jasper made them out to be. The majority of that idea comes from Holly Blue Agates whip.

First of all, take that first scene we see the other Amethysts in. The one where it’s only two of them guarding the door. Despite them clearly being aware that there’s a Sapphire in their presence, a gem which holds a position much higher up than theirs, they still decide to act up. It’s only when Holly returns then they act as they should.

Secondly, look at their faces after Holly had yelled at them. They looked scared, they wouldn’t even look her in the eyes.

If that isn’t enough, throughout the episode we saw Holly kick, shove, and be overly physical with the gems when they made small mistakes.

It’s quite apparent that the quartz working at the zoo are afraid of Holly. That’s because Holly beats them. And not just kicking or shoving, either. With her whip.

Much like slave owners did.

Jasper made it out to seem like quartz’s were supposed to be a prestigious gem. One many people looked up to. But I’m not sure that’s true. I honestly think quartz are in the same positions slaves once were for us. They’re used to do the heavy lifting higher level gems either can’t or don’t want to do. And since they’re from Earth they’re looked at as different from the eyes of many. Since they’re different, Holly has no problem beating them to get them to do as she asks.

Even Holly herself (which is a type of quartz) isn’t anything more than the overseer.

Quartz aren’t widely important gems like Jasper seemed to think they were. They’re just the work.

Watch on

Vine is working fine then Twitter buys it and does THIS


max domi: lion whisperer 

  • Me, A Keeper working at a Zoo, Watching Newt go through his collection routine in Fantastic Beasts: *furious whispering* where is he getting his supplies for this. what kind of meat is he feeding??? how does he get the meat??? magic doesn't just make meat from thin air things still have to be slaughtered what is his meat supplier??? the fuck kind of pellets were those??? does he make them himself??? how does he have time for anything??!? does time slow down in the suitcase so he can spend all this time working on the food prep and daily checks for all these things how-
i smell like fish and cucumbers.

i had an otter feeding presentation and got all fishy then i washed my hands and our office has cucumber soap.

so now i just smell like fishy cucumber which, coincidentally, happens to be our otters two favorite foods. Now if i smelled like crickets id be an otter smorgasbord.

In my low periods, I wondered what was the point of creating art. For whom? Are we animating God? Are we talking to ourselves? And what was the ultimate goal? To have one’s work caged in art’s great zoos- the Modern, the Met, the Louvre?
I craved honesty, yet found dishonesty in myself. Why commit to art? For self-realization, or for itself? It seemed indulgent to add to the glut unless one offered illumination.
Often I’d sit and try to write or draw, but all of the manic activity in the streets, coupled with the Vietnam War, made my efforts seem meaningless. I could not identify with political movements. In trying to join them I felt overwhelmed by yet another form of bureaucracy. I wondered if anything I did mattered.
Robert had little patience with these introspective bouts of mine. He never seemed to question his artistic drives, and by his example, I understood that what matters is the work: the string of words propelled by God becoming a poem, a weave of colour and graphite scrawled upon the sheet that magnifies His motion. To achieve within the work a perfect balance of faith and execution. From this state of mind comes a light, life-charged.
—  Patti Smith, Just Kids
So I had a dream...

It involved the ship Sabriel from Supernatural and was a zoo AU. Here’s what I typed down when I woke up.

Sam was a zoologist working in a zoo and Gabe was a regular visitor that was obsessed with the penguins and came to see them every Friday and was some kind of penguin expert. Sam always kinda stared at Gabe for weeks until Gabe noticed and invited Sam out to his coffee shop for a date. During their little date Gabe made lots of “Don’t worry I know the owner” jokes and Sam went along with them. After that they started dating and became boyfriends and Gabe still visited the penguins every Friday only instead of Sam staring, he went up and talked with Gabe until Sam had to go back to work or Gabe had to go home. After about a year or so Fridays of this, Sam’s boss was kinda homophobic so he threatened to fire Sam if he didn’t stop kissing and flirting with Gabe while at work. Gabe didn’t know Sam’s boss told him that. Sam said nothing after his boss told him that, just walked right out of the boss’ office. On Friday, Sam kept it up and didn’t listen to his boss was indeed fired on Saturday. When Sam was fired, he again just said nothing and walked out to plan the biggest “Fuck you” for his boss. The next Friday, Gabe had went to the zoo and straight to the Penguins to see the little birds and Sam, however he didn’t see Sam feeding the penguins like he usually was when Gabe showed up. Nope. He was confused and was wondering where Sam went until Sam, dressed in street clothes, tapped his shoulder. They hugged and Gabe asked why Sam wasn’t working and Sam said he was fired but didn’t say why when Gabe asked. Instead. Sam’s old boss was about to walk by them so he stops her and says to her, “Hey, Janet! I want you to see this.” Janet hesitates cause she sees Gabe with Sam but stays to watch what happens. So what does Sam do? Sam turns to Gabe and gets one knee, giving Gabe a mini speech about how much he loves him while Gabe looks like he’s going to cry and Janet looks pissed. Sam holds up a ring box to Gabe but doesn’t open it until the speech is over. When Sam opens it, inside is a little pebble and that’s what makes the tears of joy flow from Gabe’s eyes and he says yes more times than I can remember. Sam stands up and they kiss while a small crowd of people clap and by now Janet is fuming. Sam pulls the real ring out of his back pocket and slips it onto Gabe’s finger. Sam had proposed with a pebble because that’s how Penguins win over a mate, by giving them the best pebble they can find.

Alistair: He tries to help taking care of the little thing, though he’s really not sure what to do. He might proffer it some water and put it in his lap to keep it warm. He gasps gently whenever he sees the dog with the little thing.

Sten: Thinks this is a waste of time and resources, but when the little critter gets better, he changes his tune. “It is a strong warrior,” he decides, “worthy of respect and life.”

Oghren: “Are ye just keeping it for the cooking pot later? No? Hmph. Hope you’re not expecting me to go sharing any of the liquor with it.” In spite of his words, he’s later caught trying to offer the little thing some booze. Wynne stops him.

Shale: Does not approve. She thinks it’s a waste of time.

Loghain: Also does not approve, he thinks they have more important things to do than tend to a helpless creature.

Dog: He’s so, so gentle with the little creature, and he takes to guarding it when the Warden is busy. He likes to lick it over every now and again, especially on wounded areas. Often, the dog could be seen by the campfire, with the creature in question snoozing away behind his paws.

Leliana: Is a hundred percent on-board for trying to save the little injured animal (probably a nug). She helps by wrapping up its wounds and coddling it, sometimes telling it stories to “raise their spirits.”

Wynne: Does her best with her magic to close and heal any wounds. She thinks it’s rather sweet, and she’s happy to help. Her magic is what ends up ultimately saving the life of the animal.

Morrigan: Like Sten, she thinks it’s a waste of time and a dumb idea, but as the little critter gets healthier, she starts to grow on it. When no one’s looking, she gives it some elfroot to heal the wounds. Not that she’d ever admit it.

Zevran: Gets a kick out of the Warden’s efforts, but doesn’t really know what to do with it. He just settles for telling it stories, as if it could understand. He also suggests giving the creature some brandy, but Wynne, again, stops this from happening.