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why i'd never be a good parent
traumatizing children for the fun of it
by robert a. melos

While I'm not a hunter, don't advocate the hunting and slaughter of innocent unarmed animals in any way shape or form, I also don't advocate the waste of food; thus I have been known to partake of venison, quail and even pheasant on occasion. This occasional lapse into total carnivorous behavior has led me to occasionally being put in a position of peddling dead animal flesh to my friends in order to get rid of some of the meat.

Now I'll explain that I don't seek out the game meat. My cousin, a hunter who no longer is physically capable of the actual hunt, has friends who do hunt and he butchers their catch for which they give him large quantities of the meat. He in turn gives me and some of his other friends portions of his take. There is a lot of meat on the average deer. A lot more than I thought.

Now I know you're thinking 'what does the consumption of game meat have to do with being a bad parent'? I'm getting to that. You see my cousin has a lot of hunter friends, and he gets more meat than he can store in his freezer, and I'm just a guy who can't say no so when he offered me more meat I accepted, not realizing my own freezer was overflowing. With this in mind, and by chance running into a friend in the parking lot at Acme, I became a flesh peddler.

My friend, I'll call her Josie, was crossing the parking lot with her daughter, I'll call the daughter Chrissy. I waved to them and struck up a conversation; the usual, how's it going? How's the hubby? How's school? Then I went for it. I asked Josie if she liked venison.

Chrissy, being an inquisitive nine year-old, asked me what venison is. In reply to her question I explained that it was deer meat. 'Oh my God! You eat Bambi!' she exclaimed.

This is where it becomes apparent that I'll never be a good parent. I laughed and said, 'It's not Bambi,' pausing a beat before continuing, 'its Bambi's sister.'

The child looked up at me wide-eyed as I went on to explain that Bambi was playing in the forest one day when he was cornered by one of my cousin's yokel friends toting a shotgun. Bambi, being the smarter than your average deer type, begged the hunter to let him live promising to get the grisly murderer of unarmed animals something much more tender and tasty if the hunter would only meet him at the clearing on the south end of the forest at six PM.

The hunter, being a dumb yokel, but also being mistrusting of talking forest animals asked Bambi, 'Why should I believe you?'

Bambi looked up at him with his expressive eyes, blinked and replied, 'I'm a cute forest animal incapable of lying.'

The hunter accepted that answer and he and Bambi bumped fist to hoof before the deer scampered off into the woods. True to his word Bambi arrived at the clearing at six PM along with one of his sisters, whom I won't name because it would make the whole thing too personal, and when the hunter showed up Bambi leapt up shouting, 'shoot her! Shoot her!' He then scampered off into the forest once again leaving his sister to be sacrificed.

The hunter raised his shotgun, and, well, you can guess the rest. Thus I'm left with an ice chest full of Bambi's sister in my trunk. Josie, the mother of the inquisitive nine year-old couldn't stop laughing at my tale of forest horror. 'This is what happens,' I explained, 'when man enters the forest.'

Josie said she would love some venison, and the exchange was made out of my trunk like the tawdry transaction it was. Chrissy just looked at me and shook her head, telling her mother in none too hushed tones, 'Bob is weird.'

Maybe thats my curse. I'm just a weird kind of guy who peddles dead deer meat to my friends in parking lots at local grocery stores, and tells tales of horror to nine year-olds before giving their parents a venison leg. Good thing I've never wanted to be a parent, because I'm sure the ASPCA or whatever organization watches over children would step in if I were to raise kids on my own. On the other hand I'm great with dogs and cats, and I don't eat them.


Robert is the author of the novels Cool Mint Blue, Melba Ridge, and the recently released The Adventures of Homosexual Man and Lesbian Lad; and the creator of the on-line comix Impure Thoughts found at his web site Inside R.A. Melos, as well as having been an on-line staff writer for QBliss where he had a monthly humor column, Maybe A Yip, Maybe A Yap. In his non-writing time, when he's not studying the metaphysical or creating a tarot deck, he sells real estate in Middlesex County New Jersey, hangs out with his dog Zeus, and spends time at the Pride Center of New Jersey in Highland Park, NJ, where he is on the Board of Trustees.

more about robert a. melos


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