Orville, Pig of Destiny
Once upon a time, in a land far away… (No, that doesn’t sound right, let me try again). Once, I don’t know when, in a stinky barn yard, there lived an agnostic pig named Orville. (There, much better!) Day after grueling day, Orville wondered what his purpose in life was. When he was a young piglet, he had asked his mother what his life purpose was. She had only answered: “Who cares?”
Before Orville could answer: “I do,” his mother was lead off by the farmer to be sold. One by one all of Orville’s brothers and sisters were sold; finally he was sold to a farmer named John Manson. Orville had spent the last three days trying to get used to this “new farm,” and trying to figure out what his purpose was at the farm. The fatalistic cow next door had told him he was to be used as meat once he got fat enough, and that there was nothing he could do to change this horrible fate. Orville had taken this news much better then his brother Wilbur had. Instead of screaming that he didn’t want to be eaten, he simply concluded that humans treated pigs wrongly and discriminated against them.
Although Orville believed the cow, he was sure that there was some deeper meaning to his short life. So, he decided to ask every animal that he met, from then on, what he or she thought his life purpose was. The first animal he met after that was a salamander.
“Hello, what’s your name?” asked Orville in the most polite manner he could manage.
“Ralph,” answered the salamander briefly, staring at Orville with unblinking eyes.
“I was wondering,” began Orville, “if you know what my purpose in life is.”
“You niceapig, me tellayou,” answered the salamander, “You no geet fat, you hitafarmer when ‘e come, den ‘e no eet yew.” Then the salamander ran off and disappeared into the nearby pond.
Orville put the salamander’s plan into action at lunch that afternoon. He ate hardly anything, and as soon as the farmer stepped into his stall he ran full-force into his shin. The farmer yelled a brief, emphatic word not fit to be published. Orville did the exact same thing at dinner, Breakfast the next morning, and Lunch the next afternoon. However, after that the farmer got into the habit of dumping the pig slop over the fence. Then he forced Orville to drink a spoon-full of something that tasted horrible, and made him want to eat all the rest of his slop. That night Orville came to the conclusion that he was supposed to make up his own purpose in life. The next morning he asked an Otter that was passing by if this was so.
“You don’t make up your own purpose!” exclaimed the Otter with a sigh, “God made your purpose. God made both of us to balance out the food cycle, he made me to keep the fish population down, and he made you to be eaten.” From the very beginning Orville hated this idea; he never put it into practice, because he rejected the fact that he was supposed to be eaten.
The next night as Orville was trying to go to sleep, out of the nearby woods stepped a nice, clean-cut fox. Orville started back in alarm, because he had been told by his mother that foxes were dangerous.
“Oh, don’t worry; I’m not a Bad fox,” the vixen reassured him with an understanding smile.
“W…what are you doing here?” asked Orville in a shaky voice.
“Oh, I’m here to help you out by making sure that the farmer doesn’t eat you,” answered the fox with another one of her smiles.
“How?” asked Orville, forgetting his fear of foxes. The fox only smiled.
“Do you want my help?”
“Oh, would I, yes!” answered Orville in a very excited tone, “What do I have to do?”
The fox smiled again, “Eat all of your food, don’t hurt the farmer and don’t talk to anybeast.”
This greatly appealed to Orville, but about a week later, Orville started to feel lonely. So he decided to talk to a raccoon that nightly visited the cat food.
“Hello, what’s your name?” asked Orville.
“I thought the fox told you not to talk to anybeast.” Orville was rather taken aback, “Well, yes, but I got lonely.” He answered.
“Good,” answered the nameless raccoon, “you shouldn’t obey everything you’re told to do by a fox, though it is good to eat all of your slop.”
“Don’t talk about the fox that way; she’s my friend!” retorted Orville indignantly.
“I notice that you don’t know ‘the fox’s’ name, so why do you call her a friend?” asked the raccoon coolly.
“Well, I don’t know your name,” commented Orville.
“True, but would you call me a friend?”
“No,” admitted Orville.
“Well, my name is Dikaios, and the fox’s name is Ponaros.”
“I don’t believe you.” answered Orville sullenly.
“Good, maybe you’re not as naive as I thought,” remarked Dikaios as he walked away.
The next night Orville was visited by Ponaros, no sooner did he see her then he asked:
“Is it true that your name is Ponaros?”
Ponaros froze. she didn’t reply for a couple seconds.
“[Nervous giggle] No,” she answered, “Why do you ask?”
“I was just wondering,” replied Orville, “I was told that was your name by a raccoon named Dikaios.” He explained, “So, what is your name?” Ponaros froze again.
“Kallos,” she answered finally, “You must not talk to that Dikaios,” remarked Ponaros after a pause, “He’ll fill your mind with all sorts of wrong things, and besides, what did I tell you about talking to other animals?”
Orville ignored the question, and turned back to his slop. Ponaros licked her lips as she looked at Orville. Suddenly Ponaros leaped on top of Orville, nipped at Orville’s throat and tore at Orville’s skin with her claws. Orville was very surprised, but he finally managed to stammer in-between scratches:
“W… what are you doing this for?”
Ponaros sneered at Orville, and smiled an evil grin.
“I told you that I would make sure that the farmer didn’t eat you, and you asked how, now I’m telling you how; I’ll eat you myself!”
Orville was too surprised to squeal for help. He was starting to get dizzy from blood loss, when…
Ponaros was thrown off of him. Orville turned his head weakly to see what had knocked her off. There stood Dikaios and the Otter, Agathos. Dikaios held a stout staff in both paws that had blood on it where it had hit Ponaros.
“Leave the pig alone!” commanded Agathos sternly, “You have no right to eat him!”
“I eat whoever I want!” retorted Ponaros, “but now I don’t want to eat him, you look pretty tasty!” Ponaros charged Agathos, but backed off after Dikaios’s staff rebounded off of her head. Ponaros snarled at Dikaios; both of them stared at each other for a moment and then leaped at each other. Agathos ran over to Orville.
“Call the humans; they can help you!” urged Agathos.
“No,” answered Orville, “If I do they’ll eat me; I’d rather be eaten by Kallos.”
Due to the lack of time Agathos chose not to dispute Ponaros’ name. “But the humans are supposed to eat you; that’s how God made it to be!” retorted Agathos.
“I still don’t want to call them,” sulked Orville.
“God gave man authority over animals, and God authority over man. If God chooses to take a human’s life, the humans just have to be okay with that. In the same way, if the humans decide to take an animal’s life, we just have to be okay with that.” So saying, Agathos grabbed hold of Orville’s tail and pulled as hard as he could. Orville squealed like he was slowly being roasted over a fire.
Just then Ponaros grabbed hold of Dikaios’s staff and flung him against a fence pole, thus rendering him unconscious. Ponaros turned on Agathos when suddenly there was a sound like distant thunder, a flash like lightning, and Ponaros was thrown into the air and smashed into the ground like a rag-doll.
A smile of satisfaction spread itself over the farmer’s homely face as he lowered his gun. He hadn’t seen the otter or the raccoon slip off into the woods. All he had seen was a fox, which was trying to eat his pig, flip into the air from the impact of his bullet. Farmer Manson and his hired man walked over to the pig-pin to inspect Orville’s wounds. The hired man shook his head as he looked at Orville.
“Aye,” he commented, “That pig ain’t goin’ter recover.” Farmer Manson only smiled, “Auk,” he said, “The meats still gewd; we might h’as well cook ‘im fer temarer’s dinner.”
On hearing this Orville smiled, “I’m fulfilling my destiny!”