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“Do. Or Do Not. There Is No Try.”

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“Do. Or Do Not. There Is No Try.”

A Philippine Tarsier sits on branch of tree at Department of Environment and Natural Resources' conservation area along Loboc riverbanks in Bohol

 

Sound familiar ? Here are some more.

 

“Judge Me By My Size, Do You ?”

 

“Fear Is The Path To The Dark Side…Fear Leads To Anger…Anger Leads To Hate…Hate Leads To Suffering”

 

And finally,

 

“Truly Wonderful The Mind Of A Child Is”

 

If you haven’t figured it already these are all popular quotes from Yoda, the iconic Jedi master in the Star Wars movie series.

 

But the big question that has plagued Star Wars groupies and science fiction freaks alike has been; who or what was Yoda inspired by?

 

After decades of debate & thought, apparently there is an answer. According to Matt Simon writing in this report for the Wired magazine, Yoda is inspired by a tarsier, a “tiny, wide-eyed, positively adorable primate” found, not in the deep recesses of interstellar space, but around the forests of Indonesia, Phillipines and Borneo.

 

Simon says he has it on good authority because Myron Shekelle, an authority on tarsiers told him so. Shekelle in turn works “Closely with a guy who knows Harrison Ford, and Harrison Ford of course knows Lucas, so we’ve been trying to get the actual answer for a while!”

 

Yoda inspiration or not, the tarsier is intriguing. It can rotate its head like an owl – that’s 360 degrees –  speaks only in ultrasound and is the only primate to feed exclusively on meat. Tarsiers also have large eyeballs (distinctive Yoda) and are nocturnal hunters.

 

Tarsiers can also do a Yoda-like wiggle of their ears, though apparently 20% of humans can do that too, points out the Wired story. And it can leap 15 feet thanks to rather long legs relative to body size.

 

The only thing the tarsiers don’t do, seemingly, is to carry light sabres.

 

At least none reported yet.

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