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How to Get a Black Eye at the Circus
June 3, 2013
4:15 pm
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               The title says it all. And ninety nine percent of the people who visit a circus could not accomplish this feat if they tried. I mean think about it. First of all, who the hell goes to a circus looking for or wanting a black eye? Secondly, how would it even happen accidentally? I’ll tell you exactly how it happened to me.
               In the mid ninety’s when my son was still quite young PT Barnum came to town. One trip to our super market to view the circus advertisements posted there and my son was a non stop allegory of circus happenings. There was no way we weren’t going, so I bought tickets. I tend to involve myself in anything family to the max. I mean, why not? If I’m stuck there, I might as well learn something right? I did learn big time about circuses, and animals, and black eyes. And I learned a hell of a lot more about an elephants trunk than any human that does not live with them needs to learn.  I should have thought a tad bit more about event planning before I decided to make it a max exciting experience for my kid. I had learned years earlier at the expense of some broken, ribs and various other pains that a an animal in captivity is still a wild animal. It just has some human constraints, that (trust me) aren’t enough to save your ass should things go awry.
              The day of the circus rolled around and by my event planning skills we arrived plenty early to snoop around. Hey, it’s how you learn. I didn’t know anything about circuses. But I do know how to communicate and all it took to go behind the scenes was two minutes talking to a manager and we were checking out the pre-circus preparation. To a certain point, it was really cool and very informative. The people were very friendly and jovial. My son and I were even given peanuts and popcorn.
              We were being given a hands on tutorial about giraffes, when an elephant trumpeted and
stole my son’s attention. The manager walked us over to where six elephants were being pampered, (for lack of better word). They were right out in the open behind the large tent. I was impressed. No chains or anything even remotely secure. Before my apprehension kicked in, my son was in front of one with it’s trainer playing high five with the animal. We were told that they were all females and all close to thirty years old. They seemed very docile and pleasant mannered. I guess that’s why I left my guard down.
             I was standing in front of an elephant named Megan that seemed to want my peanuts. After getting the okay from the trainer, I held out a peanut for the large pachyderm. Behind me the trainer was telling me about the musculature of her trunk. “Elephants have forty thousand individual muscles in their trunk.” The man said. And I was amazed at the deftness and gentle manner with which such a large animal took a single peanut from my hand.
             I was also amazed at the speed at which Megan’s trunk flicked out towards my face. In a millisecond the curled trunk had unfurled and expelled the peanut I had given her along with a large amount of mucus. Two things just then added to my demise. One was that my Oakley’s were on top of my head. The second was that I had been lulled into a sense of security by Megan’s calm, slow demeanor. Her extended trunk was only about three inches from my left eye when she fired the contents of her nasal cavity with the peanut.
             Rather than try and describe the physical pain that I was experiencing, I’ll say that I would have gladly given any professional boxer a free shot at my eye just then in trade for what had just happened. Immediately dropping to one knee, the trainer yammered, “Are you alright buddy?”  Well, let’s assess that shall we? Let me just wipe this quart of elephant snot away and see if my eye is still intact. I’ll live Bub, but I am not happy! $hit it hurt like Devil just ground his dirty high heel into my eye socket with the nosecone of an f-22 fighter jet.
                Turns out Megan just did not want one peanut, she opted for the whole bag. And with the deftness of a Ninja, she knew exactly how to get them. Hell with forty thousand muscles in that shnozzle of her’s, Megan could well just have removed them from my hand. She opted for a little pachyderm target practice. And when that peanut struck my eye at some thousand feet per second, I immediately dropped the bag of peanuts for her offering. What a clever girl she was. I then found myself thinking of what elephant tasted like, but backed away from Megan while doing so lest she read minds.
                One of the circus medical personnel arrived and wash my eye with saline. Then produced a mirror and showed me my brand new grotesquely swollen, multi colored eye. My kid just happened to think that was the coolest thing ever and probably did not see much of the circus for staring at my eye. And though it did not surprise me, my son further capitalized on the situation when we got home. Not an hour after we arrived home, there were no less than a dozen of his chums at the house wanting to check out his story. “Yep an elephant gave me this black eye.” I verified his story. Much to my dismay the replies seemed to make things worse. “Cool,” seemed to be the word of unification for just then and my wife had zero sympathy.
                In reflection of getting a black eye at the circus, the smooth burn of a single malt whiskey took all but the embarrassment away.....................hell, how long would my eye remain black anyway? Not near as long as the laughter resounds at my house when that day is mentioned I can attest.

              

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brakeforbrunets
Those individuals who deem themselves perfect barely scratch an elbow in their fall from grace. Wm Steele
June 3, 2013
4:28 pm
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Awesome story! But I have to say... I SOOOOO want this to be a poem! The snot part is probably the grossest thing I have ever heard... and I LOVED the mind-reading comment. Clever stuff!

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Killerelite
Wine is bottled poetry. ~ Robert Louis Stevenson
June 3, 2013
5:00 pm
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Thank you @tlhopkinson for the praise. I can sadly attest first hand that the fluid in the nasal cavity of an elephant, (snot) is as gross as it sounds. Megan the elephant and a wrestling brown bear named Teddy are the reason I think the way I do about animals. At the mere mention of the buzz words connected with the two incidents around family, I am taken down memory lane to the two unpleasant incidents. I never thought about a poem, it's not often that I sit to write a poem that humor is the subject. Might be a fun write.........................

Those individuals who deem themselves perfect barely scratch an elbow in their fall from grace. Wm Steele
June 3, 2013
5:09 pm
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Mind reading Ninja Elephants...... Now that's a story.

 

Forgewright

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Killerelite
I am a man with one distinguishing manner. I view life as a nonstop roll by circus. Whatever my senses signal to my brain, it is received as humor.
June 3, 2013
5:31 pm
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Thanks Forge. Jest if you wish. That's why I wrote it. But take heed should you near one of those lumbering docile creatures and steer clear of it's shnozzle. For all their slow and rather mundane appearance, that thing can cover seven feet in the blink of an eye and shoot a friggin peanut with the accuracy of a scoped Bravo 51........................

Those individuals who deem themselves perfect barely scratch an elbow in their fall from grace. Wm Steele
June 4, 2013
9:44 am
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holy crap that was the funniest thing ive read in years I almost peed my pants while in a laughing coughing teary eyed fit of pure joy ... well told sir well told.. brilliant you can not tell me readers digest would not publish that id bet my life on it ...I loved it smile2smile2laughterlaughter

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Killerelite
June 4, 2013
12:43 pm
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Thanks for the compliment Robert. Besides humor, there is some useful info there. I bet not too many people that fool with elephants know that besides turning you into a grease spot, they can fire a peanut hard enough through their shnozzle to give a guy a hell of a shiner.....

Those individuals who deem themselves perfect barely scratch an elbow in their fall from grace. Wm Steele
June 5, 2013
12:40 am
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WELL I ONLY SPEAK THE TRUTH MY BROTHER,,,,,,,,, did you ever see the worlds most amazing videos where the elephant sits on the guys head and well lets put it this way gave himself a zoo keeper inama. so after I saw that iKNEW ELEPHANTS ARENT TO BE TRUSTED. the sheer cunning of using one peanut to get the whole bag is what scares me. but for one second lets look at it from his point of view....... 1 ONE STINKING PEANUT!!!!!! IM OVER 2 TONS AND HE OFFERS ONE STINKING PEANUT WHY I OUGHTA HHHATTTOOOOEEEEEE.... but I really thought you wrote an amazing piece I really wish you would submit it to readers digest or somewhere they cant turn that away ...

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Killerelite
June 5, 2013
1:06 am
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HhhattTOOOEeee.  By God Robert that's just how I'd spell it. HMMM. Maybe we should start a thread on how to spell sounds?

FFFFrrrrrrET... FFrT...eT. shake a leg, shake a leg. point at someone else and shake your head dot com.

Robert's right Bill. You've really turned it on lately. I always hate writing something good because the next time you have to top it. That's why I don't write anything good or well or well whatever......

The following users say thank you to Forgewright for this useful post:

Killerelite
I am a man with one distinguishing manner. I view life as a nonstop roll by circus. Whatever my senses signal to my brain, it is received as humor.
June 5, 2013
9:21 am
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Forge, you are quite honestly the funniest writer I know. Unfortunately for me anything I write that is an attempt at humor is something that has happened to me or that I've seen. You have the versatility to write pretty much anything you want. I seriously doubt you fear writing anything. I would like to see more of your work. Your humor is great with AM coffee.............

Those individuals who deem themselves perfect barely scratch an elbow in their fall from grace. Wm Steele
June 5, 2013
10:29 am
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How to spell sounds? I LOVE that idea... sounds very entertaining... could be a new dictionary only, like Urban Dictionary but um, I dunno, you guys are the comic writers, not me. I enjoy both your styles of writing... with KE I know its a pretty true story, and with Forge, I know maybe one phrase in it is true but to expect a bazaar ending that would NEVER happen and is completely unpredictable. Always a good time... both styles.

Wine is bottled poetry. ~ Robert Louis Stevenson
June 5, 2013
10:53 am
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I recently commented on this Post by Dr. David Rasch. http://davidraschphd.wordpress.com/2012/11/14/when-enthusiastic-feedba.....ers-block/

Here was my comment.

Hi David,
High praise is exhilarating. You have pointed something out to me that I never realized. I can sit excitedly at my laptop after receiving praise and excitedly write nothing. It is indeed my ego wanting to change the world with a great piece but something seems to shut down. I do tend to believe criticism over praise. I remember writing with an “I’ll show you” attitude. This was before I learned to get over any hurt feelings and begin to structure myself and my attitude toward writing better.

I write a lot of humor and tend to get away with bad writing habits. This in turn makes me lazy as I focus on getting to the “funny”. I am a big fan of the human condition and always appreciate information about how we are affected. Once I know how something is affecting me, I can overcome these effects and focus on the project as you have suggested.

I could always use a good psychologist to follow. I look forward to reading more of you articles.
Hows Thursdays looking for you?.

Thanks Doc.

I am a man with one distinguishing manner. I view life as a nonstop roll by circus. Whatever my senses signal to my brain, it is received as humor.
June 5, 2013
11:27 am
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Criticism: punctuation ALWAYS goes inside the quotes, e.g. "funny." Love that you still added a joke at the end of your response.

Now--do you believe me or not? :)

Wine is bottled poetry. ~ Robert Louis Stevenson
June 5, 2013
12:34 pm
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Well, obviously they don't always go inside the quotes. They didn't there. so Myuuuuh.

I am a man with one distinguishing manner. I view life as a nonstop roll by circus. Whatever my senses signal to my brain, it is received as humor.
June 5, 2013
12:45 pm
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Man, you are worse than a woman...

Wine is bottled poetry. ~ Robert Louis Stevenson

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