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Joe Johnson will be traded to the Nets.

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The Brooklyn Nets and Atlanta Hawks have agreed to terms on a deal that will bring Joe Johnson to New York, sources told ESPN.com. The deal is contingent on Deron Williams agreeing to stay with the Nets. The Hawks, according to sources, would get Anthony Morrow; Jordan Farmar, Jordan Williams, Johan Petro, DeShawn Stevenson (via sign-and-trade) and the Rockets' 2013 lottery protected first round pick. The Nets, in addition to Johnson, retain full $5 million mid-level exception (to sign Bosnian forward Mirza Teletovic) and $1.95 million bi-annual exception to keep adding to their roster. Brooklyn would also keep MarShon Brooks and free agent Gerald Green, while convincing Atlanta to take a first-round pick (via Houston), in this deal, sources said. http://espn.go.com/new-york/nba/story/_/id/8124182/brooklyn-nets-land-joe-johnson-trade-atlanta-hawks-sources-say ALSO: HA HA HA Dwight Howard HA HA HA.

A close encounter with red pandas at Wellington Zoo

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A slice of pear between my index finger and thumb, I gingerly held out my hand and held my breath. Little claws hooked into my stockings and an enormous grin spread across my face as a red panda took a bite. Reka is one of Wellington Zoo's five red pandas. She's rather on the tubby side, so it wasn't difficult to lure her in for pats with fruity treats. While all 'Close Encounter' participants are allowed into the enclosure, getting within touching distance is entirely up to how obliging/hungry the animals are feeling. http://www.3news.co.nz/A-close-encounter-with-red-pandas-at-Wellington-Zoo/tabid/1160/articleID/244906/Default.aspx

Red panda becomes surprise house guest in China

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The red panda turned up at the home of a Chinese family in the suburbs of Leshan, a city located in southwest China's Sichuan Province, last week. "We were having a meal outside our home and saw it climbing down the slope toward us. We approached it slowly, leaving the door of our house open, and then the red panda suddenly rushed inside," said the homeowner. VIDEO: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/wildlife/8978071/Red-panda-becomes-surprise-house-guest-in-China.html

NYT: Stephon Marbury Finding Success and Serenity in China

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Marbury is in a great space: his own driver, an apartment in Beijing in the equivalent of the Wall Street district and a team that could help him win his first pro basketball championship. "I never thought in my life that I’d end up going to China and wanting to spend the rest of my life here," he said. Marbury also writes a weekly newspaper column in China Daily. Given his often contentious relations with the news media in the United States, this gig is one of the greatest punch lines of the new chapter of his life. "It’s beautiful when you can tell your own story," he said. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/05/sports/basketball/stephon-marbury-finding-success-and-serenity-in-china.html?pagewanted=print

Celtics looking to deal point guard Rondo for Hornets star Paul

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When ESPN.com reported on Tuesday that the Celtics would be willing to trade point guard Rajon Rondo for the right player, it surprised anyone who had seen the sixth-year player's mastery of the team's system in recent years. But according to numerous sources with knowledge of the situation, Boston general manager Danny Ainge is highly motivated to land an even better point guard than the one who led the Celtics to a championship in 2008 and an average of 58.5 wins in the last four seasons: New Orleans' Chris Paul. Ainge, the sources say, has recently discussed trading Rondo in a deal that nets Paul, but the Hornets don't appear interested in a two-team deal in which Rondo -- who has four years worth approximately $46 million left on his contract -- and Paul would switch places. So Ainge has been on the prowl for a third team that could provide the sort of young pieces Hornets general manager Dell Demps would covet as part of his possible rebuilding plan. The more pressing question, of course, is whether Paul, who can become a free agent after this season, would consider signing an extension with Boston. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers/sam_amick/11/29/chris.paul.celtics/index.html

FT: You Are What You Meme

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If you have an email inbox, you will, even if the term is unfamiliar, have come across what it denotes: the viral ephemera that washes across the Internet, proliferates on Facebook walls and trends on Twitter. The Internet is the most potent medium of mass communication in human history, but we use it to exchange videos of cats jumping through cardboard boxes, old Rick Astley songs, and pictures of a rabbit with a pancake balanced on its head. The success of these memes prompts certain questions. Not least, what’s wrong with us? But also, what do they tell us about our relationships with each other? And what is it that makes certain memes catch fire? .... One of the most enduring and easily remixed meme genres is what users on Internet forums call the "image macro"—that is, a picture with lettering across it—of which the best known is probably the LOLcat. There are now millions of these in circulation. The archetypal LOLcat—back in the dawn of time, i.e. 2007, was a fat-looking gray mog asking: "I can has cheezburger?" Subgenres sprang up, multiplied, divided, and adapted. The Bible has been translated into LOLspeak, and LOLwalruses are already old, old news. Image macros may use a specific image and an associated running joke, or a phrasal template of the sort known as "snowclones": for example, "to X, or not to X"; "X is the new Y." Snowclones are catnip to the Internet. A catchphrase from online war games, "I’m in your base, killing your men" (and numerous misspelled alternatives), has spawned the snowclone, "I’m in ur X, Ying ur Z." You’ll find it on LOLcats: "I’m in ur fridge, eating ur noms." Kanye West’s famous interruption—"I’ma let you finish"—was another instant snowclone; "Yo Jesus, I’m real happy for you, and I’mma let you finish, but Allah had one of the best ideas of all time. Of all time!" And so forth. http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/ft/2011/10/what_memes_like_maru_the_cat_and_star_wars_kid_say_about_us.single.html

Das "schönste Säugetier der Erde": Newborn red panda twins at Berlin's Tierpark Zoo

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Als Frederic Cuvier 1825 erstmalig den Kleinen Panda (Ailurus fulgens) wissenschaftlich beschrieb, bezeichnete er ihn als das "schönste Säugetier der Erde". Noch heute teilen viele Berliner seine Meinung und so zählt das Panda-Pärchen "Isabell" und "Quincy" zu den Besucherlieblingen im Tierpark Berlin. Dort erblickten am 22. Juni 2011 die beiden Jungtiere "Kit" und "Kitty" das Licht der Welt. Während sie die ersten 80 Tage zurückgezogen in ihrer Wurfhöhle verbrachten, beginnen die Zwillinge nun allmählich ihre Umwelt zu erkunden und wagen bereits erste Ausflüge auf die Bäume ihres natürlich gestalteten Geheges. Der Kleine Panda oder Katzenbär wird wegen seines fuchsroten Pelzes auch Roter Panda oder Feuerfuchs genannt. Er lebt im Rhododendron- und Bambusdickicht an den Südhängen des Himalayas sowie in den Bergwäldern im Südwesten Chinas. Dort ernährt er sich fast ausschließlich von Pflanzen, am liebsten von jungen Bambussprossen. Da sein natürlicher Lebensraum immer kleiner wird, gilt sein Bestand inzwischen als gefährdet. Der Tierpark Berlin unterstützt daher das WWF-Projekt zum Schutze des Kleinen Pandas im östlichen Himalaya und beteiligt sich mit seiner erfolgreichen Zucht am Europäischen Erhaltungszuchtprogramm, das vom Zoo Rotterdam koordiniert wird. Tierpark-Besucher, die "Kit" und "Kitty" bei ihren ersten Kletterversuchen beobachten möchten, sollten jedoch ein wenig Glück und Geduld mitbringen, da die Jungtiere zunächst nur zeitweise die sichere Höhle verlassen. http://www.tierpark-berlin.de/tierpark/veranstaltungen/veranstaltungs-news/news/article/zwillingsgeburt-beim-schoensten-saeugetier-der-erde-im-tierpark-berlin.html

Tae-bo, the male red panda at the Green Bay (Wisc.) zoo, gets a much-needed dental...

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Tae-bo, the male red panda at the Green Bay (Wisc.) zoo, gets a much-needed dental exam. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jfNb7Xsqxjs

Rust-colored yarn-knit red panda mittens with a tan face and eye mask, and white fur-fringed ears....

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Rust-colored yarn-knit red panda mittens with a tan face and eye mask, and white fur-fringed ears. Knitwits by deLux are made of natural New Zealand wool containing water-resistant lanolin. http://www.punk.com/1460887.html

They only look like baby pandas.

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These little bundles of joy are actually chow chow dogs that have been dyed black-and-white to look like pandas. Dyeing pets has been a trend in pet pampering for quite some time. At last summer's Pets Show Taipei, there was a fierce dog-dyeing competition. But dyeing your pets to look like other wild animals is a more recent development. http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/the-rice-bowl/china-panda-pet-culture-dog-tiger-economy
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