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Prague Zoo Prague Zoo
by Alexander Mikhaylov
2008-12-30 08:29:57
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It is yet another hot and dusty afternoon, full of laziness and dog shit, drying on pavement. Valerie and I are resting on a bench in the Prague Zoo’s picnic area, holding half empty beer cups, smoking and admiring the view. It is surprising, really - I never liked zoos before, never saw the point. It seemed an essentially kiddies’ stuff to me. Now I am hooked. I have noticed it one day. It was the biggest revelation in my life. It is quite simple. You see, animals are sane. Unlike us humans, they are perfectly normal creatures. While we, smart, creative and intellectually gifted species wallow in our madness, animals remain undisturbed. Even confined to the zoo they are able to handle it admirably.  I know I would not.  Just look at them! While I stand there, leaning on a fence with a demented smile glued to my bloated face, they simply chew on whatever they always chew and shit right on the ground, oblivious both to my curiosity and to my admiration. They are just what they are while I am not what I am. Who is the ‘animal’ then? For instance, there is this thoughtful fellow elk. Unlike any of us who will turn frantic, annoyed or turned on if somebody aims the camera on his or her bare ass, the elk remains perfectly calm. He knows it is all nonsense. Indecent exposure, family values, inflation, unemployment, politics…He does not give a damn. He is not plagued by narcissism nor does he try ‘Get the message across’, ‘Self actualize’, or ‘Strive to become someone ’. In fact, animals do not try to get screwed more than they already are. When I stand there, leaning on that fence I feel like a perfect ass. And an ugly bellow rises from my parched throat:
‘Hey there, my little furry brothers! I’d love to set you free. I’d love to smash these damned fences. Come! Come! I’d even buy you all a drink!’

‘Go to Hell man!’

‘Right…’


  
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Sand2008-12-30 09:42:54
Anyone who has seen a lion or tiger pacing back and forth, lifting its head at each turn in its sterile concrete cell can have no doubts at its insanity and hatred for being punished for no reason whatsoever except the entertainment of the idiotic naked apes that toss garbage in its face.


Emanuel Paparella2008-12-30 15:02:21
The Stoic Roman admiral in the movie Ben Hur, after lashing out at Ben Hur and receiving in response a look of hatred, says to Ben Hur: hatred is good, it keeps a man alive. It would never have occurred to the admiral who was quite sane that a tiger would be capable of hatred and would go mad from indulging in it or that it was good for the tiger whether it was free or in the Colosseum. Both Romans and Greeks had no conception of inalienable rights for humans and animals but they understood quite well that hatred and its outcome remains the prerogative of man whose freedom and the choices he makes within it determine his destiny.


Sand2008-12-30 15:11:45
Of course, Ben Hur, The movie, is fiction.


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