Saturday, July 15, 2006

Ramblings from Greece

My pal in Greece has given me two enduring fantasies.

In one, I get over my current "sh*t, I'm 40 and forgot to do all that normal stuff" phase and age into being a graceful-but-wacky older single woman, living in Kenya. I attend Parliament sessions for some reason. I don't think it's clear why—perhaps I'm a member, perhaps just lobbying for changes advantageous to Fantasy #2. I have embraced and conquered the Curse of the Hippo, and have a pet hippo that I keep on a leash. We've been together since I found the hippo as an orphaned baby. It is trained well, so that when people annoy me, I say "THROAT." My hippo makes short work of the irritant.

In Fantasy #2, I have a dik-dik ranch in Kenya, at the foot of the Ngong Hills.

No, not in the Ngong Hills. My pal did not get that specific. In fact, he did not even mention the purpose of a dik-dik ranch. What can you do with a dik-dik ranch? Perhaps dik-dik is a kind of gourmet venison, and I could supply it to Carnivore Restaurant in Nairobi. Maybe dik-diks are best for dog food. Or it could be a vegetarian ranch and petting zoo, and small children would come from all over the world to pet a dik-dik and conquer their fears of being stalked by one. Maybe after reading my book, many will develop irrational fears of dik-diks, and it will be my responsibility to show the world that these small beasts are actually not fearsome. (I better go buy the URL "" now!)

What could I do with a dik-dik ranch?


scarfalonius said...

Expanding on these themes:

At some point, you'll have to consider adding the prefix 'von' to your name. When that time comes, your new accent should be rehearsed & ready. Practice saying 'I hed a fahm in Efrika...' and 'I heppen to be very gud et telling stories.'

Your feisty outbursts in the Kenyan parliament will be carrying on in the tradition of Grande Dames of Africa - Karen Blixen, Mary Leakey, Jane Goodall etc. I suggest you wear Victorian garb for these, with parasol for emphasis (but avoid saying things like 'my Kikuyu'). It would be good form to disrupt the occasional cricket match. Try not to involve yourself in decadent sexual escapades with pale men in tuxedos. The hippo should be by your side at all times, all five tonnes of him, but the way I see it there is no leash because he's so hopelessly devoted to you. Also the leash might interfere with his sudden lunging movements at your adversaries (generally civil servants and members of the British High Commission).

As for the ranch, it seems to me that dik-diks are exactly the right size for a new trend in housepets. I mean, let's face it, dik-diks are simply too cute to be dog food. The dik-dik ranch should be focused entirely on breeding and promoting mini-antelopes as companions for lonely city dwellers. Gyms will have rooms set aside for dik-diks to play and frolic while their owners are working out, public parks will make money in grazing rights. A few discreet help-wanted ads in magazines aimed at really short men ought to provide the ranch hands, probably the Japanese could be convinced to manufacture small Land Rovers. When anorexic blonde stick figures start carrying dik-diks to third-rate fashion events, you'll know They Have Arrived and your fortunes will be made.

Marie Javins said...

If I can figure out how to train a dik-dik to use a litter box, I'll be set. And guess what? Dik-diks travel in pairs and mate for life. I'll have great sales on first dik-diks, but the trendy buyers will quickly realize they need a second--and that's when I'll rake in the dough.

Marie Javins said...

Nairobi is a city, surely the biggest in East Africa. Don't they have leash laws in cities?

Marie Javins said...

A minor obstacle. Perhaps de-glanding or stinky spritzers marketed with funky labels are in order.

"Dwarf Antelope have large scent glands and regularly mark "sign posts" within and around their territories. Common markers are sticks, grass stems and points on rocks. Both males and females also mark their territory with repeated use of dung piles. Males will usually deposit on top of the female's, right after she deposits. He squirts urine at the same time."

scarfalonius said...

Surely the dik-dik's sprays could be billed as a feature and not a bug. 'Mmmm! My house smells fresh as the foothills of Kilmanjaro! Every day.'

In case that doesn't work, you'll have to get some chemistry geek to come up with Anti-dik-dik-spray Spray to cancel out the stench. See? Another revenue stream.

Marie Javins said...

Don't cats spray their territory or something like that? Maybe a dik-dik is no different. A minor inconvenience in exchange for having a pleasant animal around the house. And no pesky claw marks!

Steve Buccellato said...

Maybe you could train the dik-diks to pull heavy machinery. Or stomp grapes for your new vineyard. "Dik-Dik Vinyards" as a ring, no?

Marie Javins said...

The wine labels would be awesome.

e. Readicker-Henderson said...

"A few discreet help-wanted ads in magazines aimed at really short men ought to provide the ranch hands."

Finally a use for the Code Monkey.