One of my favorite weekly rituals is to read Harper’s Weekly with a nice cup of coffee and then spend ten minutes deciding whether I should laugh at, or cry about the state of the world. Given this nature of the ritual one would think that I have lost the ability to be surprised at the weirdness that there is human activity on this planet. Sometimes, however, reports come along that still stun me.
I remember one of my professors frequently digressing into musings on his father’s stories about the military. His father was a Marine and one of his apparently most frequent assertions was that he thinks that the Marines’ slogan should be changed from “The few, the proud, the Marines” to “The few, the proud, the dead on the beach.” Now, be that as it may, but at least back then it was human military that was lying dead on the beach–humans still fought their own battles. In the future, however, we will see the service of anti-terror dolphins and sea lions patrolling a Washington state military basis. We all were aware of the fact that the military uses marine animals to defend ships against bomb attacks in the Persian Gulf, but I had no idea that they actually train sea lions for one-on-one combat. Apparently the sea lion’s job is to attack enemy divers and put a clamp around one of their legs so that “a human with a weapon is able to reel the hostile subject to the surface.” “A human with a weapon???” So this means that they also have animals with weapons? What, like friggin’ shark’s with friggin’ lasers attached to their heads (pardon my Dr. Evil digression here)? Am I the only one who finds this deeply disturbing? Also, please visit: http://www.spawar.navy.mil/sandiego/technology/mammals/, the military’s site for the Marine Mammal Program. Feel free to marvel at the machismo of the sea lion cartoon, complete with angry eyebrows and American flag. You have got to be friggin’ kidding me!
In other news a Florida production of “The Vagina Monologues” was forced to change the title of the show after a woman complained that the title was offensive. The title of the show is now “The Hoohaa Monologues.”
Seriously, is this the rapid progression of what T.S. Eliot meant when he famously talked about the world ending not in a bang, but in a whimper?
We are the hollow men and marine animals.
Poo-tee-weet? (is this quote known well enough to be used for satire?)