|Nibbles before his demise|
I was sent a link concerning the demise of a certain gerbil, called Nibbles. The death of small rodents is generally not newsworthy. However, it was not the death of the gerbil which was deemed of note but the mode of his disposal. Most folk of a sentimental nature would shed a single tear as the small rodent disappeared down the toilet. At best the owners would have ensured that ‘Cuddles/Dimples/Fluffy/Truffles’ (delete as applicable) had slipped this mortal coil before consigning the creature to a watery grave. If you have a sick one it saves the mess of belting them to death with a hammer. A gentle drowning is infinitely preferable and doesn’t leave an unsightly stain on the carpet.
Anyway, when Nibbles, a denizen of
Somerset , popped his claws it was deemed that a more elaborate disposal was necessary. As the owners had pagan leanings it was decided to give the rapidly stiffening gerbil the dubious honour of a full Viking funeral. For those not familiar with a Norse funeral ritual then please read on and be agog. In times pagan, a Viking warrior would be laid out in full war regalia on a Viking longboat. The boat would contain pitch, tar, and kindling and set adrift on the frigid England North Sea. At an appropriate moment, prominent warriors of the war band would unleash a volley of fire arrows into the boat causing a mass conflagration as it sailed majestically into deep water…….Frankly, I wouldn’t mind this for myself. No doubt my relatives could fashion a suitable vessel out of wooden pallets. My perfectly formed body, extra nipple notwithstanding, would be doused in petrol and I'd go off in a blaze of glory down the Birmingham to Dudley canal. I think I've digressed.
Getting back to Nibbles, the hapless gerbil. What the account doesn't mention is that soon after being cast adrift the flaming barge ran aground and the conveniently roasted body was immediately pounced upon by a clowder of feral cats. Poor Nibbles might have been a third-rate pet (gerbils are crap) but in death became a first-rate entree for Mittens and co. Thus are vicissitudes of death.
Should have flushed the little bugger down the loo.