Matter of Laugh or Death
By Bill Dunn
Interesting observations on this thing we call life
TONIGHT’S EPISODE: THE WILD JUNGLE
Good evening, and welcome to another edition of the award-winning PBS series, “Jungle Kingdom.” I’m your host, Sir Nigel Pifflepants.
Tonight, we travel to the deepest, darkest jungle regions, where survival-of-the-fittest is the only law of the land, and sudden brutality is a common occurrence.
Our film crew was recently on safari in an area of Connecticut known as the I-84 corridor, a well-traveled migration route where herds of native species make the perilous trek each day from their lairs and dens to various food sources and then back again.
As dawn breaks, we see that the well-worn path is already bustling with activity. The main specie to use this migratory route, the commuteris stressedoutimus, consists of many sub-species, such as the Camry, Cavalier, Strattus, Escort, Civic, Skylark, Impala, F-150 Pickup, and many others.
Another specie which uses this same path is the tractortraileris overloadedicus, a lumbering beast which often crushes smaller creatures underfoot without even realizing it.
As the desperate and hungry herds race to their food supplies each morning, tempers flare whenever the animals bump into each other. These accidental collisions usually produce loud primal shrieks, bared fangs, frantic cell phone calls, an exchange of insurance information, and, occasionally, gun shots.
But by far, the greatest threat to the traveling herd is the statetrooperis speedtrapicus, the dreaded king of the jungle known as the Crown Victoria.
On this particular morning, we observe the typical hustle and bustle of the I-84 route. But just beyond a slight rise in the terrain, our telephoto lens spies a Crown Victoria quietly crouching along the edge of the path. As animals streak over the crest and catch their first glimpse of the waiting predator, a sudden jolt of adrenaline surges through their veins. An involuntary response, borne of sheer panic, causes their legs to lurch to the decelerate mode, and they cruise past trying to blend into the herd and avoid eye contact.
The trembling creatures repeatedly glance backward to see if the Crown Victoria has targeted them. But the king of the jungle is patient. He will wait for long periods of time, his laser-like vision monitoring the passing review, until the perfect victim comes along.
Suddenly the predator leaps into action. Look at him go! He bounds onto the pathway with a surge of V-8, four-barreled acceleration. A high-pitched wail and flashes of red and blue tell all the world that this hungry carnivore has selected a target.
On this particular morning, the Crown Victoria has set his sights on a frisky Camaro who strayed from the herd and foolishly frolicked ahead of the pack. The Camaro, a fairly fleet breed itself, attempts to flee, but to no avail. Other creatures veer to the side as hunted and hunter race by. Just look at that power and speed!
The relentless pursuer eventually closes the gap and triumphantly forces his victim to the side of the path in a swirl of dust. And so, the chase comes to an end as abruptly as it began.
Upon seizing his prey, the undisputed king of the jungle oftentimes pauses, gathering himself for the final kill—while also running a computerized license plate check. During this interminable wait, the helpless victim is indeed a pitiful sight, morosely pondering his unfortunate fate, and sitting in full view as the rest of the herd passes by.
Other herd members look at the sad sight, sorrowful that a fellow creature has met such an untimely demise, while at the same time flooded with relief that, at least this time, it was not them.
But empathy and compassion have no place in the violent jungle. The teeming herd must quickly forget the unfortunate spectacle and concentrate on the task at hand: continuing the journey and the relentless quest for sustenance. And lest we forget, other Crown Victorias are out there, stalking the thoroughfare, waiting to pounce.
It is a story as old as life itself. The continuous struggle for survival. The bloody and ruthless hierarchy of the food chain. Kill or be killed. Fight or flee. Eat or be eaten. Paper or plastic.
Thank you for tuning in to our stark and graphic presentation of ruthless predators in the wild. And speaking of ruthless predators, stay tuned for yet another pledge break.
Next week we will study a different violent, survival-of-the-fittest environment: the suburban shopping mall. Until then, I’m your host, Sir Nigel Pifflepants, saying good night.
|Home||Current Faith||Current Funnies||Faith Archive||Funnies Archive||Contact Bill|