Stop the madness: Critter art

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Last week I saw what I had thought to be a wonderful thing.

I was thumbing through the Montgomery Zoo's magazine and saw that they are letting the animals paint.

This struck me as the greatest idea ever!

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Who wouldn't want to own an original work from a giant anteater?

There are even animals painting that don't have hand-like structures.

The giraffe did some of their finest work!

Right away I knew that I had to own some of these paintings. I began working on how to get my hands on some prime spider monkey art.

This also put the idea in my head that my dog may enjoy some time with a canvas.

I called my mother and told her that I felt our Blue Heeler needed the artistic stimulation that chasing armadillos couldn't give him.

I have seen him do some pretty creative things. When there is no one to play fetch with he will put a bucket on his head and throw it himself just so he can go get it.

With a mind like that he could probably put some amazing works of art together.

I asked her to enroll him in art classes at Meridian Community College.

For some reason she didn't think I was serious. She claimed that he would disrupt the other students.

She also said they probably didn't have a smock and beret in his size.

Thanks a lot mom! Now Taz will never realize his artistic potential.

On that note I started to concentrate on the zoo animals again.

I could see no negative aspects to the whole critter art scene.

That is, until I remembered one thing.

Some artists can dwell on being the misunderstood outcasts of society.

For this reason they have little or no use for people who do not exist in their "art circles."

They spend most of their time hurling sarcastic remarks at the rest of the world that "just doesn't understand."

Their motivation is misery and suffering.

Lets suppose the animals at the zoo become so consumed with their art they take on the same attitude.

Trips to the zoo would be ruined forever.

"Don't Feed the Animals" signs would be replaced by whatever hipster slogan was circling through the exhibit that week.

I have never met one, but I would imagine there is nothing worse than a snooty llama.

Because of the potential for beatnik animals I have decided to pull my support of critter art.

Because seriously, who wants to go to the zoo and see an antelope in a turtleneck expressing his strife.

I think that the zoo will be a much happier place if we end zoo art completely.

If it is really necessary to give the animals a hobby why not let them do something a little more upbeat?

Teach them to juggle or dance.

Critter art is a threat to fun times at the zoo everywhere and must be stopped.

Rick Couch may be reached at

383-9302, ext. 132 or

via email at rick.