Polar Bears and Penguins
I developed a somewhat odd pet peeve while writing Ice: I can't handle cute illustrations of polar bears frolicking with penguins. It causes me to start ranting.
Polar bears = Arctic = top of the world. Penguins = Antarctica = bottom of the world. Even if those cute little flightless birds wander up to South America, we're still talking opposite hemispheres. Seriously, these creatures could not live farther apart without leaving the planet. Seeing a polar bear with a penguin would be like walking into your backyard and seeing a chipmunk frolicking with an elephant. It doesn't happen. They don't live together!
Also, polar bears don't catch fish. Oh, they'll happily eat a fish if they find one laying around, but they don't sit by a hole in the ice and scoop fish out of the ocean with their fuzzy paws. That's grizzlies, and they're scooping out of streams where the fish don't have a whole lot of room to escape. Polar bears live on the sea ice, above the Arctic Ocean, which as the name suggests, is an OCEAN, where the fish have plenty of room to swim and little reason to hang out at the surface next to holes in the ice. Scooping one out with a fuzzy paw would be much like catching a fly with chopsticks a la Mr. Miyagi in The Karate Kid -- a fun trick for parties but by no means a viable way to feed a species. No, polar bears eat seals. Cute, adorable, fuzzy-whiskered seals. Unlike fish, seals are mammals and have to swim up to holes in the ice to breathe. And when they do..... Dinnertime.
I will forgive an illustration of a polar bear holding a fish though, because a bear holding a bloody seal is not nearly as cute and charming.
But polar bears and penguins frolicking together..... No. Just no.
Okay, I'm done with my rant now. Off to drink a Coke.