Oh noes! Thanks to Neatorama reader Christophe, I've just found out that Minazo, Japan's largest Southern elephant seal and Internet superstar, actually died in 2005 (what can I say, Neatorama's always behind the time!). The Japan Times has the story:
Minazo, Japan's largest seal, died this week having charmed visitors for 10 1/2 years at Enoshima Aquarium in Fujisawa, Kanagawa Prefecture, aquarium officials said.
Minazo, Japan's largest seal, performs at Enoshima Aquarium in Fujisawa, Kanagawa Prefecture, in this undated file photo. The seal died Tuesday of unknown causes.
The 11-year-old male, 4.5-meters long and weighing about 2 tons, was the largest seal ever raised by a Japanese aquarium. The animal died Tuesday after its appetite began to rapidly weaken the day before, officials said. The cause of death was not immediately known.
Minazo was brought to Japan from Uruguay in 1995. The seal soon mastered a variety of comical feats, including a popular stunt in which he held a bucket with one flipper while sticking out his tongue.
Minazo quickly rose to stardom at the aquarium, where his three shows a day proved a hit with visitors.
If you're not familiar with LOLwalrus or LOLrus, here's the Complete Walrus Bucket Saga for you (many of the pics below came from this site, so go there for more bucket, folks!). And this was the photo that started it all for the big guy:
Well then, here's a belated tributute to Lolrus, who will live on in our hearts and on teh Interweb:
Mah own creashun, original photo at karlson.ru
Whut? Wheres mah bucket?
Maybe someone else has seen mah bukket!
Must go look for bucket!
Looking for bucket is hard work ... must ... get ... massage ... ooooooohhhh!!!!1!!
Desperate times call for desperate measures!
Maybe a legal persuasion is in order ... (From ICanHasCheezBurger)
Lolrus has seen the light: it must work for a new bucket. (From ICanHasCheezBurger.com)
And who actually stole LOLrus' bucket? The truth comes out at last:
RIP Minazo. (For more Lolrus-o-rama, check out the Complete Walrus Bucket Saga)