Animals writing JavaScript

In 1886, French composer Camille Saint-Saëns premiered his orchestral suite The Carnival of The Animals. Although each of its 14 movements was ostensibly a musical representation of an animal, several movements were rumored to be veiled descriptions of Saint-Saëns’ human acquaintances (and perhaps even of himself). In the spirit of Carnival of The Animals, I recently embarked on a comprehensive survey of our furry friends and their approaches to JavaScript. Here’s what I discovered.

Donkey equus asinine

The donkey is a sad, ungainly creature. He really doesn’t want to be doing this. Forlornly, he logs in for yet another humdrum day of struggling with this silly, upstart language which doesn’t even have proper types. Oh the futility of it all.

Mule equus obstinatus

Mules are as doleful as donkeys but stubborn to boot. Mules don’t forget, and will doggedly persist with patterns learned from other languages. They’re nostalgic for the syntax of yesteryear (in particular new Object() and new Array()) and will beat their hooves in mulish frenzy at variables that refuse to be block-scoped. Sadly, mules frequently suffer from chronic classitus. Please help in any way you can.

Lemming lemmus suicidus

Spare a thought for this furry little bungler. Lemmings actually know some JavaScript idioms very well. Too well in fact, because once they’re hooked on a pattern they don’t know when to stop. Whether it’s interminably nested callbacks or cascading module patterns, the poor lemming will just keep on at it until the entire app disappears down a memory hole. Lemmings aren’t stupid. Just foolish.

Owl smartassus maximus

Owls are wise and they know everything. Peering disdainfully from their lofty perches, they know what’s good for you, and if you disagree, you must be an idiot. But let’s be grateful: if it weren’t for the owl’s benevolent wisdom we’d still be breaking the internet with those unfathomable ++ incrementors and putting var statements in our for loops. Thanks owls!

Mouse rodentia timidicus

The poor mouse is not really sure of its bearings and is too afraid to ask. Mice will never really learn, because they just do what the owl books tell them to. But that’s okay because owls know everything. And also because owls eat mice.

Parrot psittaciformes ad nauseus

Parrots read owl books too, and they’re happy to tell you about it. They’re expert mimics, and they like nothing better than to hop on Stack Overflow and repeat things the owl said. Parrots don’t really understand JavaScript either, but boy can they talk about it.

Anteater irritantus giganticus

The anteater has a massive snout, the better to meddle in other people’s projects. Anteaters can usually be found on GitHub fussing about some improbable edge case or other. Unfortunately their sensitivity doesn’t really extend beyond their humungous sniffers; you can’t just ask an anteater to go away, it will hunker down in your repo until you merge that accursed pull request.

Cat felix ex semicolonus

Cats are pretty smart. They know most of the stuff that owls do, but they’re not really into that discipline thing, in fact they’re mavericks, and that really annoys owls. Tell a cat what to do and they’ll look you in the eye and do something else. Cats are naturally curious. To them The Good Parts are the dull parts. Other animals think cats are playing with fire; cats know that they’re keeping the language alive.


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