A few weeks ago, I was standing outside, in a break area at work, tossing in my harmonies to the rhetorical cantata that was going on at the moment. My co-worker, Bill, mentioned that before he moved to my area, he used to cater food to Hollywood celebrities–and I mean A-List celebrities.
I’m always keen to listen to the war stories from people who have stood in proximity to such writhing gorgons of narcissism. And Bill has no shortage of recollections from these tempestuous, maladjusted dandies.
This particular day, he happened to talk about how many celebrities he knew that spent atrocious amounts of money on their animals.
This–was of course the perfect launch point for me–because if there’s something I love to make fun of, it’s the disproportionate devaluing of human life against the backdrop of anything that isn’t. Bunch of nihilistic, rudderless ships.
I went off on a comedic tangent, saying, “I don’t care if my dog has cirrhosis, Daisy IS NOT GETTING A LIVER TRANSPLANT!”
Got huge laughs, it did.
The next day, our toy poodle rips her cruciate ligament.
$1,600.00 later, she’s on pain meds, and has a surgical scar the size of the San Andreas Fault.
I knew I was going to look stupid when I brought this up. Not to mention the wholesale stigma and shame that will accompany the fact that my dog will most likely become an addict, and start shaking down other feral castaways for their Norcos.
After wiping about eight dozen helpings of hypocritical egg off my face, one of my co-worlkers suggested we “crowd-fund” the surgery.
And I could have. My video editing skills and narrative abilities could have funded an entire dog transplant; cue the low strains of a cello . . . haunting light-bokeh transitions between shots of daisy clamoring for actualization while struggling to her water dish . . . the contemplative memories of the children, reminiscing under bright ambient lights with a pitch black background, and speaking to an implied interviewer in the periphery. Wrap it up with a little sepia overlay and a grungy adjustment layer, and believe me–you will lose your mind over a little animal and its hardships!
It didn’t take any talent to make Blackfish. We are always rooting for animals. Truth is, I could have made YOU–pay for my dog’s knee replacement. And you would have gladly ponied up the cash by the time I was done picking your emotional pockets.
But I had mercy.
It’s when I try to crowd fund something pertaining to a human being that things start to get a little hairy. And I am a human being.
Which is going to cost me.