The Elephant Tree part 9

We left the elephant and donkey explaining why the left the Utopian town of "Overthere" in an attempt to get the naive undertaker to hide them.

"We left Overthere because of the pigs".....


“That’s right…pigs.  Don’t get me wrong, it wasn't their fault.  Some of my best friends have been pigs.  But, when you get hundreds of thousands of pigs in one place and not one person willing to stoop low enough to clean up after them…well you can better believe that the smell was awful.”

“How does one town get that many pigs?

“Go ahead donkey, tell him how it happened.  After all it was your party’s idea to create the "'Utopian city of ‘Overthere’.”

“Well it was your party’s idea not to allow people that wanted to work into the town.”

“That’s called negotiating.  Your party wanted one thing and my party wanted another so they negotiated.  Don’t try to blame the conservatives.  ‘Overthere’ was a liberal idea.”

“Will you two quit bickering and get on with the story.”

“Yes, donkey, you wanted to butt in so badly when it was my turn, so get on with it.”

“I will do exactly that”, the donkey said.  And he did.

“So the politicians created ‘Overthere’, the dream town.  They created a town of prosperity and happiness.  There was no poverty and no ultra rich.  Every person was everyone else’s equal.  All the houses and all the businesses and all the cars were exactly the same.”

The elephant could not keep quiet, so he took the next line.

I felt like they were rehearsing a play

Elephant -“Everyone worked for the government.  The only businesses that were required were a newspaper, grocery stores, drug stores, clothing stores, farmers and an electric car repair shop and they were all owned by the government.”

Donkey – “At first, things were good.  Everyone was happy living in Overthere.  But then there was a water shortage and then a food shortage because there was not enough water to grow crops.”

Elephant – “The town council (which was everyone because they were all equal) had a meeting and someone suggested that they ban garbage disposals.

‘Why ban garbage disposals someone else asked?’ 

‘Garbage disposals take a lot of water,’ was the answer.

‘What do we do with the garbage,’ someone asked?

‘We could feed it to the pigs,’ someone else answered

‘We don’t have any pigs!’

‘Buy some!’


Donkey – “So an ordinance was passed.  In order to save water, no garbage disposals will be allowed.  In order to get rid of the garbage, the town will buy some pigs and feed the garbage to the pigs.”

Elephant – “But that created another problem.  What would they do with the pigs?   They had to have another meeting.”

‘Slaughter them and eat them.’


Donkey – “So they invested in a new slaughter house with brand new printed money furnished by the politicians and everyone was excited about the town’s first real business.  They were going to grow and kill pigs.  They would be able to feed the world.”

Elephant – “But when they advertised for pig slaughterers and pig butcherers no one applied for the job.”

Donkey – “When anyone was asked to take the pig killing job, they always replied:”

‘I don’t need a job; I work for the government already.’"

Elephant – “So they had another meeting and someone suggested:”

‘Bring in some outside labor!’"

"Can’t, it’s against the town ordinance!"

Donkey – “So the pig population grew and the pig population’s leavings grew because no one needed work.”

Elephant – “The politicians argued and bickered but could never agree on a solution.”

‘You can’t bring in outside labor to take a tax payers job.’

‘But, nobody that lives in Overthere wants the job.’

‘They will if they get hungry enough.’

‘Why would they get hungry?  They all work for the government and can buy all the food they want.’

Donkey – “The bickering went on and on and the pig population grew and grew and the awful smell became a trade mark of the city.”

Elephant – “So we decided to leave.”

The donkey groaned.

“You can’t finish the story there.  He has to know why we’re fugitives.”

“I think that’s what I asked you to begin with,” I said.

“Cheeeesh,” squeaked the elephant.  “All this butting- in is driving me nuts.”

“You butt in when I’m talking.”

“That’s different, you need reminding and I don’t.”

“Why do I always need reminding?”

“Did you forget?  I represent the liberals and therefore I’m smarter.  You represent the republicans and therefore you need to be reminded of everything.”

"You're also referred to as an ass and I think that is why you became the liberal icon.”

"Gentlemen, gentlemen," I interrupted again.  "You both really represent the reason why nothing ever gets done in Washington.  Why are you fugitives?"

"Gentlemen?" the donkey snorted.  “We are not people so how can we be gentlemen.  How about calling us "gentledonkey" and “gentleelephant?"

"Those words do not exist,” I said.

"They do now," the elephant trumped.

"How about saying 'gentle souls'," the donkey said, flicking his tail to swat a fly.

"Can't do that," the elephant said.

"Why?" The donkey and I said in unison.

"Because animals do not have souls."

"Sure we do," donkey brayed very loudly.

"Sure you do," I said.  "What makes you think you do not have souls?"

"The church and the human's God said so."

"Which church?"  "What God?"

"I'm not sure, but some church and I really don't know anything about human Gods."

"What happens to us when we die?" the donkey wondered.  "I once heard a human say that 'good people go to heaven, bad people, politicians, and lawyers all go to hell,' but where do we go?"

"OK, Mr. undertaker-politician, where do you send animals when you undertake them?"

"Undertakers do not undertake animals, or people.  We prepare them for burial, and we are not responsible for sending them anywhere."

The donkey had the last question, and true to their behavior, the elephant asked the next one and they preceded to rope-a-doped me about God, heaven, hell, souls and preparing humans for burial.

"Do animals have Gods?"

"How would I know?"

"When humans go to heaven, where is it?"

I don’t know where it is."

"Where's hell?"

"I don’t know that either."

"Why don't we have souls?"

"I didn't say that."

"How do you prepare humans for burial?"

"You don't really want to know."

"Why don't you undertake animals?"

"I really don't know."

"What do you do with animals when they die?"

"Bury them or burn them and sometimes we eat them."

"You eat donkeys?

"And elephants?

"Some people do, but I don't.  Or at least, I never have.  However, right now I'm getting a great desire for some donkey and elephant steaks."

My humor completely escaped them.

"What about human steaks?  Do you eat human steaks?

"Cannibals do."

"What's a cannibal?"

They were very good at starting to answer a question and never getting to the point.  They never answered a question directly.  They had been well trained by their respective political parties.

 “Will you two knock it off and answer my question. Why are you two fugitives?”

“Oh,” both replied.

“OK, donkey…you tell him.”

“Well, it’s really simple.  Both parties say that we still belong to them.  They want to find us and hide us so that we can’t tell anyone what we know.”

“Know about what?”

“The fake polling information that both parties have been reporting,” they said in unison.

/     /    /    /     /

next...politics as usual but maybe not so usual..but I think it might be pretty close...


  1. AnonymousJuly 27, 2013

    This is so fascinating, there is a lot of substance here and you make some really great points =)

  2. Sounds like Animal Farm.

  3. oh one wanted to get their hands dirty...interesting how you challenge some major concepts in what is a rather fun story....and make us think too...smiles.