Thursday, January 31, 2008

My Popular WTF Series

The picture on the left depicts what is apparently known as a "rogue cow". That would be the "rogue cow" that is featured in what the Metro.co.uk calls "our popular rogue cow in Australia series". I believe the appropriate response to that sentence is, "WTF?"

I guess the gist is that a cow escaped from it's life of farm captivity and decided to wander about the freeway system in search of a new life. If the freeways in Australia are anything like the freeways in the US, it's going to have a new life as a Big Mac real soon if it's not careful.

The rogue cow caused traffic in both directions to stop and that led the police to determine that the animal was posing a danger to motorists and that they needed to do something about it. (If the traffic kept going, would the police have determined that it was OK that have the rogue cow traispsing about the roadways? One has to wonder.) That was apparently easier said than done, although it's unclear if it was because trapping a cow is difficult in general, or if it was more due to how they tried to capture it.

Their first idea was to "contain the cow by locking up a fence using a chain." Apparently, there are fenced in freeways in Australia. Go figure. I thought I understood what that meant until I read, "after ramming the fence, the cow managed to jump over the chain and continued to run along the motorway." So....they just took a chain and stretched it out in front of the cow and...? Yelled, "Stop!"? I don't get it. Did they really expect that to work? I'm not a cattle rustler or herder or anything. I don't even eat red meat. But I think I'd know enough to do something a bit more containing than that.

Here's my favorite part. (Well, my favorite after the "rogue cow in Australia series" line.) "This zany, high-spirited and knockabout chase was finally brought to a slightly disheartening end, as police were forced to shoot and kill the animal after an hour-long pursuit." Apparently, their arsenal of "courses of action to contain a rogue cow" is limited to chain stretching and bullet shooting.

But after reading that, I found myself disappointed that the American press does not write like the fine folks over there at Metro.co.uk. "This zany, high-spirited and knockabout chase". That's some fine journalism right there. See, writing like that would have put a whole different spin during the OJ Simpson low speed chase debacle of yore. Think about it. "In our popular, US Celebrity Runs Afoul Of The Law Series" tonight, OJ Simpson led police on a zany, low-spirited and parade-like paced chase through the LA freeway system." SO much better. It would have been even better if it could have ended with, "The ridiculousness was brought to a slightly, but not entirely, disenheartening end, as police were forced to shoot OJ after an hour-long pursuit that covered three and a half miles."

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