of Animal Issues, I thought the following pitch might be
Ladies and gentlemen, friends and neighbors, gather
round, gather down front, right here, right now. Let me
tell you a little about the strange attraction we have
inside this tent, alive, for you to see, in just a
minute. But before we can let you in, the management has
requested that we warn you about what you're going to
see, educate you about one of the strangest, oddest,
most unusual creatures to walk the face of this green
Unlike today, California wasn't always the land of
superhighways, supermodels, and super-WalMarts. in fact,
in the not too distant past, there was a ranch, kind of
set off in the middle of nowhere, and the owners of that
ranch were circus people. They'd found a place they
could live in peace, when they weren't traveling around,
providing quality diversions for children of all ages.
One evening, just after sunset, with the light dimming
in the deep blue sky, the owner of that ranch was
surprised to see a somewhat dusty figure walking down
the road to his barn. It was a man who'd apparently been
well-to-do, and had fallen into the ways of poverty. He
wore a threadbare suit, and carried an old doctor's bag
in his hand, from
which proceeded many strange noises. He said his name
was Frederico Arbuthnot, and he used to be a scientist,
an experimental psychologist from Paraguay. Mr.
Arbuthnot told his story, an odd one. He'd been hired by
a government agency, that didn't officially exist, to
create an experimental machine, right in the heart of
This machine operated by manipulating the brainwaves of
large numbers of people, and the secret government
agency wanted to try it on the movers and shakers of the
movie business. So they pointed the thing toward
Tinseltown, and turned on the switch.
Little did they know that an out of work actress had
placed her newborn baby under a bush, right next to that
machine. And when the machine started whirring and
whistling, the baby was right near the exhaust pipe, in
position to receive all the aftereffects of the
As I mentioned, the machine whirred and whistled, for
its purpose was to collect all the intelligence of all
the inhabitants of Tinseltown. Alas, there was
none, and as the machine worked harder and harder, the
power grid for all of southern California was blown. The
machine sputtered and died. To no avail, Mr. Arbuthnot
wasn't able to get it
going again. But instead of the whining of his machine,
he discovered a whining baby. Mr. Arbuthnot picked up
the baby, and walked away from his machine, leaving it
in its hidden corner, behind the Magic Castle, whose
inhabitants thought it was a garbage compacter.
In the months that followed, several things became
obvious to Mr. Arbuthnot. One, was that the level of
intelligence in Hollywood hadn't gotten any lower, a sad
harbinger of the future. Another, was that the ego
levels of it inhabitants had fallen by about 50%, a
temporary maladjustment, but significant nonetheless.
He wondered what had happened to the 50% of all those
egos, and found out fast. That baby, remember that
It was a beautiful baby, but terrible to be around. It
whined, it cried, it demanded, and it spit at everybody,
when it didn't get what it wanted. Apparently, the egos
of all those beautiful people had become concentrated in
this one vile creature. So Mr. Arbuthnot decided to give
the baby away, to the best people he could find, with
the knowledge to deal with such a small beast. And the
only place he could think of, where it could possibly
have a useful life, was as a display in the circus.
Mr. Arbuthnot handed the bag to the circus owner, and
walked away, never to be seen again.
Inside the bag was the baby, and the old circus owner
did the best he could, to train the beast. As it grew,
he was grateful it had opposable thumbs, because it
liked to dance to organ music, and gladly received
nickels from the hands of well-wishing spectators,
though it claimed they were silver dollars. It wore a
little hat, but its head outgrew it, though the body did
not. It's personality resembled that of a capuchin
monkey, capricious, occasionally spiteful. When the hat
no longer fit, the creature lost its cuteness factor,
and graduated to a different kind of performance.
For a while, it was featured in the main circus
performance. It learned to juggle, and could manipulate
three objects, while claiming there were seven. It would
put anything down its throat, so it's juggling props
disappeared, and it just couldn't stay there any longer.
Its head kept getting bigger, and soon it would tip
over, forehead on the
ground, its little arms and legs waggling in the air.
Look at the pictorial banners off to the sides, ladies
and gentlemen. You'll see a giant question mark. Because
what's inside this tent, defies all description, a
twisted creature with the World's Largest Ego.
Look, look through the doorway, ladies and gentlemen.
you see a semi-trailer parked there. On the other side
are some windows, consisting of one-inch-thick plate
glass. Inside those windows are bars of steel, 3/4 of an
inch thick, two and a half inches apart. Those bars are
welded in place for your protection, to keep IT in. All
the doors are locked, to keep IT in. Those windows are
there for your protection, to prevent this miserable
thing from throwing excretia in your general direction.
A small speaker will enable you to hear the actual words
IT uses, in its occasionally intelligible rants.
And ladies and gentlemen, friends and neighbors, we make
no apology in asking that you contribute just a bit, to
see this attraction. The secret government agency denies
its existence. Mr. Frederico Arbuthnot has disappeared.
The old circus man has passed on, leaving us with IT.
We can't let it out in public. Zoos won't take it,
saying it's human.
Hospitals won't care for it, saying it's an animal. Even
PETA doesn't know which flier to put in on.
We buy IT clothes. It rips them off, saying they're not
good enough. We try to feed IT food. It throws the tray
on the floor, screeching that it deserves better. We
arrange for kind-hearted people to care for IT. It
gnashes its teeth, bites the ones who've actually grown
to like it.
And so today, and today only, we'll invite you into this
tent, for a mere 2 cents... But we won't ask you to
contribute now. Come inside, see IT. Hear IT. Decide for
yourselves if this show is worth it. And if you've been
entertained, after IT has cussed you out, just give it
your 2 cents back, place it in that bucket, right by the
exit sign. Step up, right now! Alive, on the inside!
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