Friday, March 23, 2007

Watch Jeff Corwin get tossed by an elephant

That's what the headline said. I did not know who Jeff Corwin was, but I sure wanted to see him get tossed by an elephant. It was worth it too. The elephant grabbed him around the arm and tossed him back into the water. I watched it four times and laughed myself silly at this near tragedy each time. I especially enjoyed Corwin's wild cries of pain and surprise while the elephant was tossing him around like a rag doll. I know it sounds sick, but I don't think anyone could watch this video without laughing.It helps (a little) that I knew in advance he came out of the attack all right. But if he had died, they'd have posted it anyway, just like that 80 year old dude that got washed away by the flood the other day.

It seems that this guy Corwin is an animal biologist. He was over in South East Asia along with Anderson Cooper (damn, if only that elephant would have grabbed Cooper) harrasing one of the few remaining Asian elephants so as to be able to make money off of it when the scene is shown on Anderson Cooper's television show. For his troubles, Corwin came within a camel's hair of joining former TV star Steve Erwin in the Dead Naturalists Hall of Fame. What those two idiots (Cooper and Corwin) were doing standing waist deep in a river, petting elephants is beyond me. As one of my partners would say, "what could possibly go wrong ?" It reminded me of the famous Mary Tyler Moore episode "Chuckles Bites the Dust" where the clown host of a children's show dresses up like a peanut for a circus parade and gets killed by an elephant. None of the guy's colleagues can talk about it without laughing. There are even lists that go out over the internet of deaths so bizzare or stupid that, despite the fact that each of them is a genuine tragedy, you can't help but laugh. You know that Anderson Cooper was thrilled when that elephant grabbed Corwin. If he'd have died, Cooper would have been sad, but CNN would have made the best of it and done a couple of heart felt specials with Cooper as the host, asking the audience for donations, at the end of each show for some Siam Wild Elephant Preserve that they would build in Corwin's honor.

This Anna Nicole thing has been the final nail in the coffin of good taste for American Broadcasting. The nation sits transfixed and laughing under it's collective breath about a death of a human being and the fight over her child. It is entertainment pure and simple. Just like it would have been if Corwin had been grabbed around the neck instead of the arm and expired in front of a television audience. The last bastions of respect have been breached. We will laugh at anything, be entertained by anything, the gorrier the better. They will probably give the damn elephant its own reality show, or maybe a quiz show to see, now that we know that no adults are smarter than fifth graders, if any one is smarter than a rouge elephant. Or better yet, put the elephant on the Survivor's island and see who can survive now. As long as I live, I will never get over just how right Barnum was when he said "No man ever went broke by underestimating the taste of the public".

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