SHANGHAI - World Cup fever may be fading, but now there's a new fever rising over an eight-legged sea creature with a knack for football forecasting.
Paul, the oracle octopus that won worldwide attention by perfectly predicting the outcome of World Cup games, has boosted sales for some online vendors and has been the source of increased octopus consumption in restaurants.
By Tuesday, vendors had released more than 150 products on online retailer taobao.com with "Paul the octopus" in the description, and the items - including furniture, toys, snacks, computer gadgets and clothes - are selling fast.
"I added 'Paul the octopus' to a product description this morning, and all of a sudden I received more than 20 orders," said Li Xiang, a toy seller. "Before I edited the description, I was selling only two or three a day."
Some fans of losing teams said they were going to cook up an octopus to vent their anger. A spokesman with a Sichuan restaurant in Luwan district said he has observed increasing orders for spicy octopus over the past two days.
On douban.com, a lifestyle Web portal popular for young people, several netizens posted inquiries about keeping an octopus as a pet. Fish experts said that an octopus can only live in saltwater, and that to raise one people need a large tank, proper water and toys with holes, because an octopus loves passing through objects.