After chores this frosty morning I canvassed my little animal kingdom here at Turkana Farms about us maybe collaborating on a satire on the President Elect’s cabinet making process. After doing what I thought was a really savvy sales job on the matter to the critters assembled in the barn their answer was a resounding “No!” Decidedly there was no interest. Absolutely none.
Our elderly boar Vernon oinked in reply to my proposal saying, “No… oink… interest here. I am just going to be content…oink… focusing on our cushy life here in the pig pen and…” (momentarily interrupting himself to quickly gobble up his pig slop) “… and not waste my considerable intelligence on what is going on in the…oink.. out of control, so-called human world.” And he tossed his head baring his tusks… oinked… and shuffled off into his hut, and buried himself in the straw.
In the sheep section of the barn our sweet ewe Nilufer spoke for all the ewes sheepishly saying: “Ba-a-a We’ve decided to stay out of this weird brouhaha (she actually said “broubaba”) and enjoy… ba-a-a… our hay. We… b-a-a-… sure don’t want You-Know-Who coming around here and groping our… b-a-a-a.. genitals.” And just the thought of it made her drop to the ground to protect herself.
“Oh,… b-a-a-a.. of course You-Know-Who wouldn’t stoop to that” guffawed our wether Orhan, enjoying his own pun. “Get it?… b-a-a… STOOPED to that,” he chuckled.
“B-a-a-a. I agree with Nilufer,” chimed in Ayse ewe, ignoring Orhan, “we have enough to contend with from our rammy ram, Osman. just now.
Osman then ambled up, shoved the ewes aside and said “B-a-a-a… I have all I can do to impregnate forty some ewes. It’s mating…b-a-a-… season, you know. No frivolously fondling… b-a-a… of genitals around here. We’re… b-a-a-a… serious!” And lumbered to the barn door where he proceeded to bash away at it with his considerable horns.
Looking at him aghast Nilufer exclaimed softly to Ayse: “B-a-a-..doesn’t he remind you sometimes of …b–a-a-a…You-Know-Who?” And both tittered and moved away (looking back over their shoulders guarding their genitals) to join the rest of the flock at the manger.
I next moved to the henhouse but was not too optimistic since the chickens have never been known to agree as a group on anything. And sure enough they were all helter skelter scavenging whatever came their way in the muck and snow. From what I could make out from their occasional squawks and clucks they had not heard of the election, did not even know who You-Know-Who is, and had no opinions about anything.
And so feeling rather discouraged I trooped back to the house and sat down at the computer wondering what on earth I was going to come up with for a Turkana Farms Bulletin this week. Even I was, it seems, having trouble working up enthusiasm for satirizing events that seemed somehow beyond satire.
So I turned to the New York Times website for inspiration as I often do and came across an interesting article Mark had put me onto entitled: “Al Franken Faces Donald Trump the Next Four Years” by Mark Leibovich http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/13/magazine/al-franken-faces-donald-trump-and-the-next-four-years.html?_r=0. Well, I thought, if anyone knows how to get one’s satirical juices going Franken certainly does, and I began to read the article avidly.
“Some interesting points made.” I thought, “Maybe I can use some of these ideas in my next go-around with our barnyard family.” And then it suddenly occurred to me I had not yet approached the geese who were, as they say, “Not available for comment” when I tried to see them earlier.
So I donned my winter coat and hat again and trudged out to their little pond by the willow tree, where they had apparently gathered to try to figure out why the water had suddenly turned to ice.
As soon as I began my sales pitch it became apparent to me that the geese also had been reading the Mark Leibovich New York Times article.
One of them waddled up, stretched our her neck and began pedantically pointing out to me that “…while before the…honk… election when satire really worked and it was safe to laugh, it was so only because of the ridiculousness of the conceit that…honk.. Trump could possibly win.” But now that he had actually won I was wasting my time trying to satirize the situation.
The second goose chimed in with: “How can one do….honk….satire or straight out ridicule if your…honk… target can’t even be bothered to care?”
And Daisy, the smartest of the three, puffed up her feathers and concluded with the observation that “..the situation… honk… has moved into something too… honk… visceral to be called humor and seems to be… honk… moving into something else entirely… honk…honk….”
“Wow!” I thought, “Whoever coined the term ‘silly goose’? These are three really bright, articulate critters we should pay serious attention to.”
And so I dejectedly slunk back to the house and returned to the computer, where I now sit with writer’s block scratching my head and trying to come up with my blog topic of the week.