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Fuck Politeness

This is a revolution, not a public relations movement

Zoo adventure-story time…

Took my son to the zoo again a while ago, and he got to be the kid who has the trained  owl sit on his arm.

A friend who went with us took the following photo and it got me to thinking about two other times I’d been to the zoo with my son.

 Time the first:

Volunteered to help out on a school excursion. Was given three kids to supervise, had a cracking migraine, and had had about an hours sleep the night before. Got myself a BUCKET of coke at lunchtime and sat with my kids. As we were chatting a peacock moseyed on over, and I *uncharacteristically* bent forward to say hi. When my face was about ten centimetres away it pulled back its head, opened its mouth and let out an unholy shriek, one of those inward-sounding-screams, like those creepy fucking dragon-things the Nazgul fly on in Lord of the Rings.

 Of course, I, with my characteristic aplomb and discretion screamed “Holy SHIT!!!” at an immoderate volume, whilst windmilling backwards, spilling my big bucket of coke in a spectacular arc, and almost falling backwards off the picnic bench. Needless to say this amused the small children in my care no end, and I’m sure they thought I was the best parent to do an excursion with EVER…”No SERIOUSLY!!! It’s like a Three Stooges movie!” (8 year olds all talk and think this way you know).

So, surprisingly after that one, I went back again. This time I was rather horrendously hung over – possibly even still drunk – and it was drizzling with a gentle but steady rain. I was concentrating on not dying, and wondering WHY we’d persisted in coming (I had no willpower and my sister in law was determined) when there were so many comfy couches in the world to nap on.

In a particularly spaced out segment of my hangover I found myself in front of the enclosure for the Himalayan Tahr. In my fug, I tried to imagine that time would in fact pass, and I would in fact at *some future point* be in a dry warm bed rather than in the cold and rain staring at captive animals and wanting to vomit.

I looked at the plastic mountain the Tahr stood on, looked at the Tahr, looked at the sign.

I looked at the “mountain” the Tahrs stood on, concerned that it looked like plastic and might be slippery when wet.

But, Ladies and gentlemen?

The sign for the Tahrs read:

   The Sign

                          
[Well that’s great, it appears you can’t actually read the sign, but essentially it craps on and on about the Tahr being agile and sure-footed, due to evolution, and a leather-y pad on the hoof, and blah, blah, surefooted, blah – I apologise for the technical ineptitude]

So, okay, they’re sure-footed, but still…a plastic mountain in the rain?

 While I’m standing there, pondering the safety of the Tahr up the mountain, with the words about how sure footed they are rattling around in what was left of my brain, a bloody Tahr slipped! All of a sudden there was a spectacular tangle of limbs and a slide. And bugger me if he didn’t right himself extremely quickly…but the timing did me in, and I in my hungover state of shock laughed setting a grand example to the children present, that animals hurting themselves is the stuff of comedy gold, much like Funniest Home Videos (I almost heard the comical noise they would have backed the footage with). 

Let me be clear, I don’t advocate animals falling down for my amusement, and I’m not even sure where I stand on zoos in the first place, but my poor brain didn’t stand a chance…it was like The Simpsons! So funny but so sad…and ok, there’s no redeeming it, I’m a terrible person for laughing. But the sign, the sign!

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