As I was listening to Michael Crichton’s Jurassic Park during my commute through eternal Houston traffic this morning, a thought occurred to me. Why don’t I, yet, have a miniature elephant – a pygmy elephant – in my very own personal menagerie? You see I live in the suburbs of West Houston. It’s cheap. It also allows me the luxury of collecting various biological specimen, such as a Labrador Retriever mix, a chihuahua, a crotchety ancient miniature pinscher, a big siamese cat, a comet goldfish, an oranda goldfish, and a male human. To this impressive menagerie, I’m most eager to add a miniature elephant. So why don’t I yet have one?
This question is vexing, because first, according to Jurassic Park, they should be on the market by now. Second, I want one now. Third, I should have my very own tiny elephant, right now, this very moment, grazing in the grassy patch of Katy Prairie (not the singer, ’cause that would be weird) that makes up my backyard.
My guy would certainly be a dusty gray. He would have wrinkly, chubby knees just like the big guys in Africa and South Asia. He would also have a powerful tusk. Except, he would be tiny and he would be named Hercules.
I’m thinking that Hercules should be the size of a small dog. The right size, to my imagining, would be about the size of my chihuahua. Pachuco weighs roughly six pounds. Just kidding that little chunker is usually a good 7.5 pounds. Sadly, like his mistress, his weight fluctuates depending on bread consumption and blissful denial.
But, then again, maybe Hercules shouldn’t be that small. I mean, I definitely want Hercules to be pint sized. I want to be able to pick him up and cuddle him and whisper sweet nothings into his great, floppy, elephant ears. I don’t want him to be so tiny, though, that he falls prey to a marauding hawk. I can just see him. Hercules trumpeting with panic as he is hoisted into the cloudy sky. Poor Hercules.
So Hercules cannot be as small as Chuco. Perhaps Ol’ Herc should be the size of a standard dachshund. That’s better. That way he would be too big for a hawk to pick up, but small enough so that his poops would be manageable.
So this brings me to my main point, what the hell geneticists?! Have you been so emasculated by anti-GMO and green activists that you are no longer actively working on creating my Hercules? It’s been 20 years, I think, since Jurassic Park was published. Remember? The movie came out in 1993. I was 13 years old people! It’s 2015 now, and nope, no tiny elephant in sight.
Oh Noes! GMO elephants! I mean once I read this science fiction story where the solution to overpopulation was to shrink the size of the human race so that we’d consume less, thereby, allowing for more people. How ingenious is that? So, by that same token, sort of, can’t we save the elephants by making them smaller and selling them to sad sacks like me? This is the perfect solution. A win-win, if you will. The gentrified neighborhoods of Brooklyn and Austin can soon be teaming, not just with Starbucks sipping yuppies, but also with their pet miniature elephants. Miniature elephants, who will be trumpeting with joyful exultation at being taken for a walk! I want this future.