Monday, 25 July 2011

eat your pebbles, you little ratites!


How long since there was any Cuppy? Too long.

After the children are hatched, Mr. Emu leads them out for their morning meal of fruit, grass, and the small stones required by the Ratites or flightless birds for digestive purposes. He watches them carefully, admonishing them from time to time in a low buzzing tone. This means, 'Eat your pebbles, you little Ratites!' Emus have been domesticated with considerable success, but there is a drawback to having them around. You must not run away when the Emu approaches or he will chase you and behave rather roughly when he catches you, as he undoubtedly will.* He always senses it when anyone is afraid of him and acts accordingly, so you must pretend to be quite indifferent.** The correct procedure is to stand perfectly still when an Emu comes at you with his wings outstretched and blood in his eye. He may possibly change his mind or drop dead before it happens. If you feel that you simply cannot face the Emu, of course you can try to escape. In making the choice, a good deal depends on where you would rather be kicked. Anyway, getting kicked by an Emu is no worse than lots of other things. Life isn't a bed of roses, you know.

* His kick is less severe than that of the Ostrich, which easily breaks a man's leg. The Emu's kick seldom breaks more than the fibula, the smaller bone of the leg, leaving the tibia in first-class condition.
** He senses that too.

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