Judge, Jury, and Executioner  

Today in horrible news, a seven year old boy was caught on tape (after hours) at an Australia Zoo, where he crushed several rare lizards with a rock, and proceeded to feed other live ones to an 11ft saltwater crocodile. Holy hot shit people.

Even though he cannot be tried for his crimes as he's under 10 years of age, I suspect this kid is in for a couple of rough years, or at the very least some intensive therapy. Reading the comments on this reminded me that such extreme cruelty to animals is one of the biggest red flags of a future serial killer. This makes the story even more so unsettling, but also flashes me back to some of my own youthful indiscretions against nature.

Two things that are very common in Central Texas -- where I grew up -- are wolf spiders and fire ants. For as much as I couldn't stand the two, I would go out of my way to bring them together. Under the sink we had some old canning jars which I would use to capture any wayward wolf spider that wandered into our apartment. From there I'd poke holes in the top of the jar and head to the nearest ant bed. Awful, I know. The spider would always put up a valiant fight, but was quickly overcome by the unyielding hoards of ants.

This same scenario played out on countless occasions, at least as often as I was supplied with a wolf spider, wasp, or scorpion that found it's way inside. Let's just say that strength in numbers went wholly undefeated. A few times I received such entomological bounty that I was able to pit spider against wasp or scorpion. For those perverse enough to care about the stats involved, the final standings worked out like this:
  1. Me
  2. Ants
  3. Wasp
  4. Wolf Spider
  5. Scorpion
I can't deny that this makes me look like a somewhat morbid child. Yes, I watched horror movies and played violent video games, but I was eight and spiders suck. Besides, I've hardly grown up to be some freak show serial killer. The number of people I have in freezers in some storage unit off of highway 99, that may or may not be leased under the name of Craven Moorehead, is so low it's practically arbitrary. Practically.

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7 Reasons to Live

  • Ryan  
    October 3, 2008 at 12:29 PM

    This kid should be launched into space.

    I don't think bugs and their ilk count as far as cruelty to animals go. I knew a kid who pulled the legs off daddy longlegs and mutilated worms with bent paper clips. He is a perfectly well adjusted unemployed 30 year old guy living in his parents basement.

  • Christie  
    October 3, 2008 at 12:42 PM

    Remember that time you caught a spider in a jar and kept it there without any food or water to see how long it would take to die.

  • Jay  
    October 3, 2008 at 12:45 PM

    Ryan: If those daddy longlegs were still with us today, I'm certain they would forgive you.

    Christie: For the record, I caught it to show our landlord and then I kind of forgot about it. That's a completely different brand of callous you know.

  • Chris  
    October 3, 2008 at 12:59 PM

    Kid probably hates Geico commercials. Probably set him off.

  • Em  
    October 3, 2008 at 1:37 PM

    Yes, Ryan is right. Cruelty to bugs and spiders doesn't count. I used to do the whole salt on the snails thing... I never once felt bad about it.

  • The Grunt  
    October 4, 2008 at 10:12 AM

    If the kid doesn't grow up to become a serial killer, he at least might become a good burglar.

    I like that you kept stats, Jay. My friends and I engaged in grasshopper fights. We would grab grasshoppers by their wings and push them into each other until one would be victorious, having chewed the other's limbs and face off. I also got a lizard drunk once.

  • Chris  
    October 5, 2008 at 9:46 AM

    Was that 30 day thing business days?

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