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Monday, October 24, 2011
I want a monkey.
My fear of wild animals is well-documented. I have an irrational fear of many things - among them, in no particular order are: Circus clowns, wild animals in general, wolverines in particular, the sea and all creatures that inhabit its untrustworthy waters, children with two different colored eyes and certain types of wood. That all said, it is my theory that the animal kingdom is gearing up for a big takeover - all the news stories of bear-mauling, rogue schools of giant jellyfish, reptiles, big cats, kangaroos and fire ants all gone completely man-hungry simply serve to illustrate my point.
But that's not why I'm writing today. I watched a show on television this weekend called "Fatal Attractions". It was not the sassy Michael Douglas/Glenn Close suspense thriller I was hoping to watch - the fact that it was on a channel labeled "Animal Planet" should have clued me in. It was actually a show that offered up stories of "animal-hoarders", who stockpiled flocks, pits and packs of dangerous pets, often to the point of depriving themselves of living space, food, health and, as the title suggests, sometimes their lives. The show I saw featured a man who was eaten by his brace of giant lizards. I don't know that a group of lizards is called a "brace", but it sounded better than a "lounge" of lizards, which was my first instinct. The second show - yes, I watched two of them - detailed the last hours of a woman bitten by one of her great menagerie of venomous vipers. "What the hell?" I asked the television. What kind of dumbass keeps a bed of poisonous snakes roaming free in their shitty apartment? A DEAD dumbass, I answered myself, also aloud. I was shaken and disturbed and had to turn to a 1959's sci-fi movie whose plot had more holes in it than the carcass of the dumbass who had been eaten by his lizards. The fact that the movie had special effects by Ray Harryhausen made it easier to recover from the animal-hoarder show, regardless of the shoddy plotline.
I guess my point is this: Let's not bring wild animals into our homes. No lion cubs, no cute little monitor lizards, no wolf pups and sadly, no monkeys. These animals belong in the wild, where they can join their carnivorous friends in planning their takeover of the world. The weak and slow end up in a zoo - their peers appreciate them being removed from their ranks, it only serves to make them faster and stronger. The weakest of all are trained and used in the movies. I find it hard to believe, however, that they don't snap and chew somebody's face off now and again.
And a final note to those who make this "Fatal Attraction" television show: Knock it off, will you? You've already ruined my dream of owning a monkey I could dress up like a 19th century Italian immigrant and teach to smoke cigars. Haven't you done enough?