Dog food

Yesterday, the manager of the safari camp walked up to me with a big grin on his face. 

“I’ve found the perfect woman for your harem,” he declared, handing me a newspaper clipping. “A magnificent specimen with the body and soul of a female gorilla,” he added in a tone of ironic reverence. 

I read the report in his presence. It described the travails of an unfortunate Yorkshireman whose ear was bitten off by a stupendously butch woman. She claimed to be the man’s girlfriend, but such assertions should be taken with a pinch of saltpetre. The marauding she-elephant will often lay claim to stray bucks she has ravished. The slender provocation for her assault was that the man had accepted a drink from a barmaid in celebration of his birthday. 

It goes without saying that a female gorilla would not have behaved in the manner of that appalling ogress. If a generous barmaid bought me a drink, my females would be jealous of the beverage rather than the goodwill or affection it symbolised. I'd have to get some straws so they could share it with me, and then rent a large wheelbarrow to dump them in afterwards. Gorillas have little tolerance for alcohol and get tipsy from the smallest quantities. I was fortunate to acquire some measure of immunity in my circus days. 

The woman’s method of attack also bore scant resemblance to the battlefield tactics of lady gorillas. Although they often use their teeth to pursue their vendettas, they never go for the ear. When our females bite, they like to sink their fangs into something meaty rather than chewing on a meagre sliver of flesh that would barely pass for an hors d’oeuvre in a vulture banquet. Unlike humans, we devise our punishments for the sensual gratification of the avenger rather than the pain of the victim. 

His calumny against the female of my species notwithstanding, I decided to humour the manager after reading the article. 

“You’re right,” I said. “She has great potential as a mate. Why don’t you invite her to the safari guesthouse for a few days? She’ll need time to acclimatise before she’s ready for the jungle. You could lick her into shape for me.” 

The manager guffawed at my suggestion. “I’d rather lick a baboon’s anus,” he replied vulgarly before ambling off sideways like a crab. 

The final point of interest in this sorry saga is the fate of the severed ear, which the woman chose to spit out rather than swallow. As it was nowhere to be found when the medics arrived, it was quickly surmised that the man’s pet dog had made a light snack of it during the fracas. I hope this perfidious act of gastronomy will persuade humans to discard their silly notion that a dog is man’s best friend. Not only did the ungrateful pooch offer no help whatever to its tormented master, it hung around like a scavenger for scraps from the carcass. A better quality of friendship would be obtained from an egocentric hyena. 

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