Monday, May 28, 2007

A whale, a giant hog, and Rosie O'Donnell

I like to think if Johnny Carson was still around, he would be thinking that title would make a great Karnak setup. But Johnny's gone so we're on our own out here.

A whale, now and then, gets confused and swims through the Bay and heads up north or east and before you know it we have round the clock team coverage on every TV station. A few years ago it was Humphrey the humpback whale in Rio Vista or some such place, and right now we have a mother whale and her foal (cub? whelp? calf!) floating back and forth and just making a heck of a big stir. It always makes me wonder. If a bear or a cougar gets confused and shows up where it's not supposed to be, our first instinct is to shoot it but if it's a whale or a sea lion we get all motherly and need to take care of it. Whales always get cute names, too - somebody wanted to call these latest lost whales "Delta" and "Dawn," which created an annoying ear worm across the nation. Nobody ever names the misplaced mountain lion. Somewhere we decided that whales are smarter and nobler than we are, and they wouldn't beach themselves or get lost if it weren't for rotten old humans because we must be causing it somehow, just like we are responsible for every bad thing that happens in nature. Isn't it possible that a whale could have some kind of virus or head injury or even get hold of some fermented plankton and just plain get loopy? Or maybe some whales are just real dumb? Do you think if this whale could talk it might say "Why all the attention? I know May is sweeps month but isn't Britney Spears doing something more interesting right now?"

A giant hog, now and then, shows up in the news, too. In general, they're dead when they become famous. The most recent giant dead pig is the "Monster Pig" shot by an 11 year-old kid in Alabama. (The kid's got his own website where you can order a poster if you want. Check out the "negative comments" section if you like to see an 11-year old verbally abused. Wonder if any of these comments were posted by Alec Baldwin?) The big story here for those who follow the "somebody-shot-an-enormous-pig" genre, is that Monster Pig is allegedly even bigger than the famous Hogzilla. Funny that the general reaction to the "somebody-shot-an-enormous-pig" story is more likely to just be "wow, that's a big old pig." Not a whole lot of people feel sorry for Monster Pig and Hogzilla. Imagine the different reaction if we saw "somebody-shot-an-enormous-whale" in the news. There wouldn't be enough indignation in the universe to go around. All because somehow we deify some species, demonize others, and remain mostly indifferent to the rest, like great big pigs. If a wayward whale deserves our sympathy and undertsanding, doesn't Monster Pig deserve it too?

Which brings us to Rosie O'Donnell.

Maybe I should stop now.

1 comment:

your daughter said...

i tried to shoot her once.
the bullet bounced off and she chased me on all fours.