Saturday, December 29, 2007

Doomed Ants

Some Christmas gifts linger in memory, such as the the Wretched Mess calendars I used to get in the early '70s. The were gag calendars, offshoots of the Wretched Mess News, featuring such juvenile jokes as, "European? Hurry up, I gotta used the bathroom!" I'm not sure where we got them or who produced them. The Internet offers only fleeting references. According to Albris, two early '80s Wretched Mess calendars are currently for sale, and I'm not sure if this thing has anything to do with the calendars I remember. Proabably not.

Last year, I put a rubber chicken in Lilly's stocking. Not the full-sized chicken, but a half-pint version I got in the toy aisle at a nearby supermarket. I've said it before, and I say again, no home is complete without a rubber chicken. So far, Lilly doesn't see the wisdom in that, but she's young yet.

This year, I got her an ant farm. Or, to be more precise, a live ant habitat. Uncle Milton's brand, everything included but the ants. Enclosed is a coupon for ants that you mail to Uncle Milt, and the ants will be sent to you, provided it's warm enough (we will order ours in the spring).

Uncle Milt's FAQ tells us that "federal agricultural regulations prohibit us from selling or shipping the queen ant. Since only the queen reproduces, the regional ecological balance is cited as the main concern. The ant farms were also not designed to house the large queen and the thousands of offspring she produces. The ants will work without the queen."

So rather than working for a monarch, the ants will work for the good of the commune -- each according to his ability, each according to his needs. Maybe they're red ants. Haw, haw. But it's a farm of doom for the poor creatures, since they can't reproduce. After a few months, the colony -- I mean, the anarcho-syndicalist commune -- dies out. All for the pleasure of the human masters. Does PETA have a position on ant farms? Probably yes, involving firecrackers to facilitate their liberation.

Labels: ,


At 12:10 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

ARTHUR: Please, please good people. I am in haste. Who lives in that castle?
WOMAN: No one lives there.
ARTHUR: Then who is your lord?
WOMAN: We don’t have a lord.
DENNIS: I told you. We’re an anarcho-syndicalist commune. We take it in turns to act as a sort of executive officer for the week.
DENNIS: But all the decisions of that officer have to be ratified at a special biweekly meeting.
ARTHUR: Yes, I see.
DENNIS: By a simple majority in the case of purely internal affairs,–
ARTHUR: Be quiet!
DENNIS: –but by a two-thirds majority in the case of more–
ARTHUR: Be quiet! I order you to be quiet!
WOMAN: Order, eh — who does he think he is?
ARTHUR: I am your king!
WOMAN: Well, I didn’t vote for you.
ARTHUR: You don’t vote for kings.
WOMAN: Well, ‘ow did you become king then?
ARTHUR: The Lady of the Lake, [angels sing] her arm clad in the purest shimmering samite, held aloft Excalibur from the bosom of the water signifying by Divine Providence that I, Arthur, was to carry Excalibur. [singing stops] That is why I am your king!
DENNIS: Listen — strange women lying in ponds distributing swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.
ARTHUR: Be quiet!
DENNIS: Well you can’t expect to wield supreme executive power just ’cause some watery tart threw a sword at you!
ARTHUR: Shut up!
DENNIS: I mean, if I went around sayin’ I was an emperor just because some moistened bint had lobbed a scimitar at me they’d put me away!
ARTHUR: Shut up! Will you shut up! [Arthur starts hitting and shaking Dennis]
DENNIS: Ah, now we see the violence inherent in the system.
ARTHUR: Shut up! [Still hitting Dennis]
DENNIS: Oh! Come and see the violence inherent in the system!
HELP! HELP! I’m being repressed!
ARTHUR: Bloody peasant!
DENNIS: Oh, what a give away. Did you here that, did you here that, eh? That’s what I’m on about — did you see him repressing me, you saw it didn’t you?


Post a Comment

<< Home