Expatriate Owl

A politically-incorrect perspective that does not necessarily tow the party line, on various matters including but not limited to taxation, academia, government and religion.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Latest from the Kolokolo Bird:

I have enjoyed the works of Rudyard Kipling since before I could read.  I remember his "Just So Stories" being read to me and my nursery school classmates, just before nap time, by our teacher, Miss Suzy.  Since that time, I have read, and re-read, hundreds of his literary works over the years.

And, going through my father's papers and personal effects, I recently found that Dad had chosen a Kipling quotation for the epigraph on his college yearbook page.

Kipling was and is, in many ways, the antithesis of what today would be called the Liberal philosophy, and I have had, thus far, a few incidents of disapproval from some of my leftward-leaning colleagues at the University regarding my various invocations of Kipling quotations.

But I enjoy Kipling, and find him relevant in both the philosophical and literary sense.

The New York Times (which I will admit to reading on occasion, but which usually is put to better use as a birdcage liner) reports:

"15,000 Crocodiles Escape From South African Farm"

"About 15,000 crocodiles escaped from a South African reptile farm along the border with Botswana, a local newspaper reported Thursday."

"Driving rains forced the Limpopo River over its banks on Sunday morning near the Rakwena Crocodile Farm. The farm’s owners, fearing that the raging floodwaters would crush the walls of their house, opened the gates, springing the crocodiles, the report said. About half of the reptiles have been captured, with thousands still on the loose."

The Kipling angle on this one is quite obvious.  "The Elephant's Child" from his "Just So Stories!"

[For those of you raised on the late 1900's or early 2000's anti-Eurocentricity school curricula and thus deprived of Kipling's poetry and prose, the "Just So Stories" were composed by Kipling to answer (in a very nonscientific tall tale style) his very young daughter's questions as to how certain world phenomena came to be.  "The Elephant's Child" story explains how elephants came to have long trunks.

The overly-inquisitive Elephant's Child in Kipling's story wanted to know what crocodiles ate for dinner.  The kolokolo bird advised the Elephant's Child to "'Go to the banks of the great grey-green, greasy Limpopo River, all set about with fever-trees, and find out."  This was the set-up for the plot of the story.].

Well, now there are thousands crocodiles in the great grey-green, greasy Limpopo River!  What would the kolokolo bird say about that?

And, given the real life dangerous propensities of crocodiles, it would not be surprising in the least if the next species to go swarming out on the loose were to be lawyers.

Not alligators, but Litigators!

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