Monday, November 20, 2017

1872 A Letter from Cornelius

From the collection of Jean De Brunhoff 1937

We recently received this email from Cornelius, counselor to Babar, King of the Elephants:

Dear Wessays,
I’m sure you’ll be happy to learn that at least for now, it will remain illegal to import what your president trump and others call “elephant souvenirs.”  As you know, here in elephant country, we don’t consider them “souvenirs,” but rather as body parts.

Steinway and other piano makers have found synthetics to make the white keys. CF Martin and others have found a way to make synthetics for their guitar bridges.  We were all greatly relieved when Mr. Obama slowed our population decline by making our corpses less valuable.  But we’re still in trouble.

There aren’t enough grazing lands left in those countries where we live and we have had to resort to GMO grains grown overseas as staples of our diet. While we don’t know that there’s any downside to that, neither are we sure that there isn’t.  

So we have commissioned a study of the effects of a GMO diet on some 1250 elephants ranging in age from two years to 65, near the end of our probable lifespan.

(I was born in 1937, which makes me well over the typical age of demise and frankly, at age 80, I have little to lose if this diet is detrimental.)

But to return to the “souvenir” issue, we have recently conducted a study with the cooperation of the Rhinoceros Government to test the effects of powdered rhino horns.  Of course, we used only rhinos who had passed away and carried organ donor cards.

Our study showed conclusively that horn powder is neither an aphrodisiac nor does it help eliminate ED.  So we have dispatched a small delegation to Beijing and other cities in Asia to present our papers at scientific meetings.  Our members are walking to the target cities and we expect them to reach them by the second quarter of 2018.

Of course, we invited some rhinos to join us.  But apparently the man-on-rhinoceros crime rate is so high, all declined.

In any event, allow me through your column to thank the American people and the president for delaying the change in policy.

With fond hope that the ban will remain in place forever, I am sincerely yours,
Counselor to His Royal Majesty

PS. Please forgive any typographical errors in the above. Arthritis prevents me from typing so I must dictate my correspondence.
Sent from my ePhone

--Please remember this: Guns don’t kill elephants… wait. That’s not right.  They sure do… else why call them elephant guns.

--Maybe we could reduce the rate of gun deaths among people thus: Instead of calling them “AR-something or other,” call them “People guns.” Then we could have formal seasons. If that’s good enough for elephants, why not for elementary schools, nightclubs, military posts, colleges, movie houses and public streets?

I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
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© WJR 2017

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