Friday, October 12, 2007

Save the Lobsters

When in a foreign country, you must assume that whatever indigens do, it will seem strange. Take for example the first stroll I took on an autumn morning at Piazza delle Erbe in Padova.
A wondrous exhibition of bloody cows, piggy heads and porkish looks displayed itself, in a certain B-movie splatter atmosphere. I went to one of the gorge-tear screaming butchers and asked in a rather intimidated tone: "One piece of cow, per favore" (my Italian was at an all-time low).
"Subito" he said, and, taking the butcher knife, started singing "La donna รจ mobile" while the machette was chopping away the last pieces of vegetarian self-esteem I might have had.

That's why, when I read the other day on a newspaper about the lobster friend, I welcome the news with the usual "They're foreigners, they're meant to be weird" shoulder shrug. At the supermarket on the corner of my University, a 17-year-old wearing a wig and a hat turned up at the fish counter and asked whether the lobsters were still alive. "Actually we've got them two days ago and they're on their last breath, but please, help yourself, the ice is just to keep away the smell" must have said the salesman to the undercover cop.

On the affirmative answer, she brutally grabbed four sane specimens and tried to make her way out of the door. When the guards stopped her, the girl finally revealed the mysterious reason of such abnormal behaviour: she was on a mission on behalf of the "Animal Liberation Front" association, there to give relief to the poor lobsters held in a state of utter pain and sufference. I've heard that the lobsters are now going to press charges against the violence of the liberation forces.

I myself am planning to save from its suffering a spiny lobster tomorrow. As far as I'm concerned, I'll choose the quickest, most painless way for such creatures. Gentlemen, get your butter. The water is already boiling.

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