Let’s Choke Phil (after the “Somebody Feed Phil” documentaries)

(previously published by High Shelf Press)

Let’s choke ravenous, insatiable, obscene, repugnant Phil To death.

Ironically, Phil is sort of like the octopus he is stuffing in his pie-hole right now, all arms grabbing and pulling food up to a hard, horny, merciless crunching beak.  Though, of course, Phil is never like the once and perfect being that he has now eaten, not the brilliant, sentient being flashing its vast panoply of color in beautiful fluttering waves that integrate that scintillate with a pristine environment.  Phil is a pasty, skinny, insatiable palimpsest written there-on being the demise of eating as survival and the much broader and bigger demise of decent, integrated, compassionate, quiet and careful living.  Instead, Phil eats to impress, or to amuse (his audience but mostly himself), to make friends/admirers, to achieve some proposed noble thing, to indulge the artistic impulse, to establish a body of work (an Oeuvre which since the egg is food he immediately consumes) but mostly to fill the vast, insurmountable, unfillable, awful emptiness inside.

And he has no idea.  Which is incredibly dangerous.  To all the animals he consumes, of course, to the global fisheries silver and flashing, to the savannahs’ ungulates and predators, to waving grasses and powerful ominous storms, to the unassailable upward-trending mountains, to the pure and clear lakes and streams, to the quaking and whispering forests, to crystalline icy-blue glaciers, to the bountiful, to the abundant, to the beautiful and to and to…. all depleted.   All gone.  All to feed the obscene, empty hole in Phil’s petty being.

Oops that’s a little harsh.  Anyway.  Geez.  Let’s choke the guy to death for god sakes.  It’s way to dangerous, the danger is too immediate to wait for the proposed divine or universal intervention – the one that intervenes with a hunk of fatty meat lodged so far down in Phil’s esophagus, right at the gateway to breath, that it is unredeemable, and we are relieved of his incessant chattering, and eating, and obliterating.  We can’t wait for a distracted higher being to pay attention.  Phil is running out of animals of the so-called lower order to consume.

And then, what will be left for Phil to eat?  Our pets that are the residue of that lower order, then our children littlest ravenous beings that they can also be, and then, ultimately, our trembling, fragile, disappearing selves.  We have to stop Phil.  He is eating through everything that matters on this earth.  He is eating up our humanity.  He is eating up any hope of finding meaning in our struggle to survive.  He is eating up who we are, who we can be, who we never were.

Henry Grier Stanton


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