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Animals and social distancing

Laugh Tracks in the Dust
Milo Yield
Damphewmore Acres, Kan.

We folks with steel trap minds know that “anthropomorphism” is the proper term for humans attributing “human-like behavior” to animals or objects.

It the crux of the origin — or crutch for their tear-jerking funding appeals — for such high-minded groups as People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, the Humane Society of the United States, the Disney creators of animated films, such as Bambi and Dumbo, and bleeding hearts the world over.

So, during this Covid-19 pandemic, in the interest of equality between humans and animals — and because some animals have been diagnosed with CV — I suggest that the “anthropomorphismists” (APs) in our midst make the same diligent and stringent effort to enforce “social distancing” and “self-isolation” and “quarantine” in animals as the medical experts have made for us lowly humans.

So, no more “herds” of cows or horses allowed. They are only allowed to move or graze in line with at least 6 feet of distance between them. If the cows or horses are eating out of a common bunk, they must have a protective plexiglass shield.

So, no more “flocks” of sheep or goats allowed. They’ve got to “string out” 6 feet apart and the sheep dogs guarding them must keep a 6-foot distance or be wearing a protective mask.

And, no more flocks of chickens or turkeys. Can you imagine the size of the industrialized barns needed for poultry to maintain a proper social distancing, and who’s gonna make those tiny chicken feeders with tiny plexiglass divider shields?

And, the same with industrialized swine farms. Why to maintain proper social distancing and protection the humongous barns will have to cover 80 acres.

And, what about wild animals. In the interest of their collective safety, the annual migrations of wildebeests, zebra and antelopes in Africa and elk in the U.S. will have to be cancelled.

And, the APs will have to strictly monitor that “gaggles” of migrating geese leave 6-feet between each goose in the Vee. I’ll bet that the increased wind drag on the geese will leave them emaciated and exhausted by the end of their migration.

Monitoring migrating ducks and blackbirds will be prove even more problematic for the APs. Ever watch the ever-changing formations of those feathered migrators? I dare any AP to come up with a way to social-distance migrating blue-winged teal or red-winged blackbirds.

And, no more “schools” of fish, eh Elmo? All schools of fish must be broken down into their respective families for home-schooling.

Say goodbye to “packs” or “litters” of dogs and wolves. Dogs and wolves will have to learn to kill on their own. And, only single pups. No litters. Too dangerous.

No more swarms of bees, wasps or hornets will be legal. Well, at least we humans will stand a better chance of fighting off a single, self-isolated “murdering hornet” than a swarm of them.

Other groups of animals we can say goodbye to are: colonies of bats (harder to create Covid-19); caravans of camels; kindles of cats; murders of crows; convocations of eagles; parades of elephants; armies of frogs; towers of giraffes; bands of gorillas; bloats of hippos; cackles of hyenas (why not hens?); a barrel of monkeys; a parliament of owls; prickles of porcupines; stenches of skunks; nests of snakes; scurries of squirrels; coveys of quail (sad); pods of whales, and zeals of zebras.

The collective name of animals that I love most is a “congress” of baboons. I can think of one such “congress” of baboons that should go into extinction, rather than “quarantine” or “self-isolation.”

•••

My old friend, A. C. Doocey, from Asbury, Mo., got himself into a bind during the CV crisis. You’ll recall that A.C. likes to drink and gamble in excess. Well, during his “quarantine,” A.C. had a hard time finding a tavern that wuzn’t closed. But, he finally found a Joplin tavern that allowed a few customers in the back door.

Well, the first time A.C. got inside, he commenced to make a drunken nuisance of himself and the barkeep told him he’d have to leave. Drunken A.C. slurred, “I ain’t a’gonna leave unless you give me a going-away gift.”

The barkeep told A.C. they’d throw darts to see if he got a gift to leave. If A.C. could throw a dart into the bullseye before the barkeep, A.C. could have a gift.

Naturally, the barkeep didn’t think A.C. could possibly hit the bullseye, but the impossible happened and A.C. hit the bullseye with his first dart. The barkeep had to think quick about a gift, so he told A.C. he’d bring something from the kitchen. So, he went back to the kitchen, got a brown paper sack, and grabbed a flat water turtle out of the aquarium, put it into the sack and handed the sack to A.C. as he escorted him out the back door.

The very next day, A.C. showed up at the tavern again, but the owner wuzn’t there and the lady tending bar let him in. Again, predictably, A.C. got drunk, created a scene, and the lady barkeep asked him to leave. A.C. said he would if she would throw darts to see if he could win a going-away present. She consented, after A.C. explained what he’d done the previous day.

Again, he got obscenely lucky and scored a bullseye on the first dart. The lady barkeep asked him what he’d gotten for his gift yesterday.

A.C. hiccuped, belched, scratched, then replied, “I’ll take another of them hamburgers on a hard roll. Yesterday’s wuz sure tasty.”

•••

Words of wisdom for the week: There are no more live circuses anymore because all the clowns got into politics. Have a good ‘un. ❖


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