The report begins, rather breathlessly, ...
The audience burst into hearty laughter when Frenchman Serge Pouille said he loved the giant panda in Chinese with a strong Sichuan accent after being dubbed a Pambassador, in Chengdu, Sichuan province, on Saturday. Pouille had just been confirmed as one of three winners of the 2012 Global Pambassador program, a three-month long competition to find "panda ambassadors", to spread the word of the plight of the giant panda across the globe. Pouille's fellow Pambassadors are Chen Yinrong from China and Melissa Katz from the United States.
It appears that this circus is coming to the UK sometime soon. Let's hope it just goes to Scotland where credulousness about pandas seems at its UK highest, judging by the willingness to lavish tax-payers' hard-given money on them. I despair (and blame WWF), and ask myself why I feel nothing for these feckless animals that have backed themselves into an evolutionary cul-de-sac. Mind you, they do have excellent publicists and PR agents, so they can't be all that dim.
Update 4th December
For the latest update on the cynical economics around Edinburgh's visitors, see today's BBC report.