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Dear Ask Boz,

Are zebras white with black stripes or black with white stripes?


Dear Kaitlyn,

This question is, of course, one of the three great questions of Zebra philosophy, along with "Why do lions hate us?" and "Are albino zebras gray?"

To find out your answer, I first talked to Alan Smith, the first Zebra-American ever to teach at a college. He invited me to meet him at his favorite field of grass. Being polite, I agreed. He was no liar; that was some of the best grazing I ever experienced.

He was quite a talker, so I let him go on about how "America should accept people of all stripes," and his struggles with the zebra theory that rainbows are racist. Eventually, I was able to ask him your question.

Although he admitted that he did not have an answer, he told me who did: Zeb-Ra, ancient god of the Zebra people. Zeb-Ra lives on top of the mountain called Ras Dashen in Ethiopia. Alan told me that before I even approached him, I needed to collect three items to give as a gift offering. These three gifts would guarantee an answer.

First, Zeb-Ra wanted the Pelt of the Nemean Lion. In the myth, Hercules slayed the lion and used the pelt as armor because it was nearly impenetrable. Zeb-Ra wanted it to protect him from future attacks by Simba, the lion god. That, and he loved the irony of using a lion pelt to protect him from lions. Gotta respect that.

I thought this would be pretty tough to find, but on a lark I typed "Nemean Lion Pelt" into EBay. There were five available! The bid was over a million dollars, but as a fictional character I have access to unlimited funds, so I was easily able to purchase it. One down!!

Next I was tasked with recovering Joe Namath's pride. He lost it at Giant's Stadium when he drunkenly propositioned a sideline reporter. Zeb-Ra is a big fan of Broadway Joe, and wanted to help him get his pride back.

My intuition told me that I would find Joe's pride right where he lost it. Unfortunately, Giant's Stadium has been demolished, and the site of Joe's shame is buried under a parking lot. Undaunted, I got out my pick axe and started digging. Sure enough, under the asphalt and gravel, there was Joe's pride. After I cleaned it off, I noted it looked a bit like dying Voldemort. Score two for Boz!

My final task was to bring Zeb-Ra the rare 15 dollar foot long from Subway. A hybrid of Tuna, Meatball Marinara, Egg & Cheese, BMT and Veggie Delite, this sandwich is extremely rare. What makes it $15 dollars is the layer of gold-schlaglami. That's right, it's a mixture of hard salami and Gold-schlager. It is only available at the Subway in Vatican City. I had to go in disguise, having been kicked out of Vatican City following a three day bender with three bishops and a cardinal in 1869. I disguised myself as an alter boy, and was able to enter the city unmolested. I got to Subway, and ordered the sandwich. Wouldn't you know it, it was served to me by Pope Francis! He really is a man of the people.

So, having found the three gifts, I headed to Ethiopia. At the base of the mountain, I spun around three times, transforming into Mountain Boz with Action Crampons. The climb was easy, and soon I stood on a marble floor facing Zeb-Ra on his throne. He looked really uncomfortable, honestly. Zebra bodies just aren't made for thrones.

He was pleased with my gifts, though he had hoped that Namath's pride would look a bit more "robust." Still, he gladly granted me an answer to any question I would ask.

"Great Zeb-Ra," said I, "Are zebras white with black stripes, or black with white stripes?"

To which the god replied:"Yes."

So there's your answer! Gotta go: Alan Smith is bringing hate crime charges against rainbows and I promised I'd go to court with him as moral support.


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