What it says on the tin.

I wouldn’t say I’ve had writer’s block but I do have to admit I ain’t wrote much or nuffink lately. The last thing I posted was written a few months prior and, since you ask, it definitely didn’t win that competition. That honour went to some magnolia puddle called Kitty and, since you also ask, her entry wasn’t much cop; I’m no serial trumpet blower – mine wasn’t all that but it was at least the equal of Kitty’s little piddle. Meow. Anyway, like dust on the TV screen loads of little ideas have been settling but I’ve just not been that arsed to do anything about them so today the decision has been reached to turn back the tide of apathy and put something down. Even if it’s crap.


And who do I have to thank? Four tigers and a fucking idiot, that’s who. I know some stuff about tigers. They’re orange and stripey. They’re big and hairy. They have lots of teeth and big paws which actually look quite cute when they’re padding along but we all know not to be fooled. They like Frosties and they like to come to tea and every once in a while they just love burning bright in the forest, preferably at night. I also know that they are noble, majestic creatures and we’ve hunted the fuck out of them and destroyed all the places where they like to hang out and that there are now more tigers in private captivity in America alone than there are in the wild. Which is several levels of depressing.


Just imagine if a tiger kept you locked in a cage and then for maybe a hour a day let you out on the specific condition that you would perform demeaning tricks for it while morons paid money to watch. Got it? Well that’s what it must feel like to be a circus tiger and quite why they haven’t staged a very bloody coup by now is anyone’s guess. Duh, of course, it’s because they’re kept in cages all day long, like animals. But surely we have reached a suitable level of sophistication by now that we don’t need to gawp at a tiger juggling toasters while some tit in a costume cracks a whip at it’s left ear. For entertainment!


I say all this because some boundless cretin in Italy has just been killed by four tigers. He must have been a cretin because he clearly thought that being a tiger tamer was a good idea for a job. Hint: it’s not. 61 year old Ettore Weber must have thought himself quite the big man with his taming talent but surely at some point he must have thought to himself “what in the name of fuck am I doing pissing about with four huge cats that very likely would like to eat me?”. Of course it is extrememly difficult to empathise or sympathise with him because so few of us have ever found ourselves in such a position and so many of us must think he is a dickhead. Sorry, was a dickhead, now a dead dickhead.


According to the press it started out when one tiger ‘set upon’ poor Ettore and then his three friends, adopting the principle of Dumas’ musketeers went all in and gave him a bloody good mauling. The four big, beautiful buggers then ‘played’ with his body for a bit (dressing up, sex fantasies, what’s the time Mr Wolf; we may never know) before circus staff intervened (another crap job, surely), though quite what the circus staff had been doing all that time is a worthy question. Perhaps writing their wills and calling home one last time. Apparently all four tigers have been removed from the circus and placed in a safari park, which to me sounds like a bit of a step up, and quite rightly so.


You see, cats like Hairy Mary wouldn’t last five seconds without me and ‘the wife’ but tigers aren’t made like that. They deserve to be free and wild and to do things that tigers do without arsehole humans screwing up their lives. Tigers can fend for themselves and they can hunt for themselves and they should be offered a level of respect far higher than they get these days. And don’t tell me that at least circus tigers are safe and live much more fulfilling lives because how can that ever possibly be true and even if it was how could we ever possibly know; would they write us a thank you note or come round to mow our lawns; perhaps that was their next trick.


So stupid, dead Attore might have been one of the best wild animal tamers in Italy but that didn’t make him Ironman and nor did it make him a good man. He should have recognised that his job was a stupid job and that the tiger is not a stupid animal. As he slipped away it must have occurred to him that for all our pomp we are still just animals and the laws of the wild will always dictate that in a straight fight tiger beats human every single time. We’re supposed to be clever and this never had to happen. There are lots of things that can kill you and though I’m not a betting man I might just put a small wager on the probability that whatever does me in it is highly unlikely to be four browned off circus tigers in a big tent with a bunch of twats clapping me on. How did we get to this?


G B Hewitt. 06.07.2019


Yup, a bit crap, but you have to re-start somewhere.

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