By Claire Wolfe
It was an ugly scene down at the Hog Trough Grill and Feed last month, where the Hardyville Animal Welfare League (all three members of it) met to discuss how — or if — we could ever raise money to build a no-kill animal shelter.
“You did WHAT?” Dora-the-Yalie yelped, slopping her coffee onto the checkered tablecloth.
Mrs. Nat looked defensive and croaked, “Accepted a pig for our raffle.”
“I thought it was sweet,” Mrs. Nat sniffed.
Dora and I put our heads in our hands. While we were out of town for a few days, it seems Mrs. Nat had made a tasty – if tasteless – executive decision: Turn Babe into porkchops to save Lassie.
Somehow, the irony went right over dear old Mrs.Nat’s head.
In a way, we couldn’t blame her. Given the local economy, she was so thrilled to have a donation — any donation — that she accepted without thinking. Now Dora was having a vegetarian attack and I thanked my lucky stars I wasn’t in charge of the PR campaign to persuade the world that this project was a great idea.
But then, whodathunk the world (that is, the world beyond Hardy County) would ever know?
In hardscrabble Hardyville, a chance at whole freezer full of meat for a buck is a real welcome thing. Mrs. Nat had already printed posters and started selling tickets. Locals were beginning to get interested. In our desperation to raise shelter bucks, even Dora reluctantly agreed that Hardyville would love a chance at a pig.
Miss Piggy was fated to be bacon, anyway. Might as well go in a good cause.
But then they found out what we were doing, here in backwards, carnivorous little Hardyville.
You know who they are. The Food Police. The Our-Way-Is-The-Only-Way Brigade. The Hole-In-The-Head Gang.
Don’t ask me how they found out. Like most things, these days, you can probably blame the Internet. And blame Bob-the-Nerd for putting Hardyville Nooz online.
The first e-mails from the east-coast Big City were polite but real puzzlers...