Wednesday, August 19, 2009


Daisy was out standing in her field. It wasn't actually her field -- it belonged to Farmer Fred -- but she lived in it, and she thought of it as hers. She had risen early, as usual, to do her cowesthenics. Now she was done, and the other cows were starting to wander out onto the field. "Bullcrap!" muttered Elsie as she stepped in something on her way over to Daisy.

"Actually, it's cow crap," Daisy said. "They don't allow bulls in here."

They both turned to look across the field toward where Ferdinand, the farm's bull, stood grazing. "He's quite a stud," Daisy muttered dreamily.

"Well, today's your lucky day," answered Elsie, "although I don't know what you see in him. He's kind of wimpy."

Elsie had come from another farm, and she was always finding things to criticize about Daisy's farm. Daisy just ignored her. She pitied Elsie and her complaining. Not only had it turned all the other cows against her, but Daisy knew that Elsie could not possibly be happy if she had that much to complain about.

Later that afternoon, Daisy waddled jauntily through the gate and into Ferdinand's field. She gave him a big cow-lipped smile and turned away from him, waiting. Ferdinand walked around to face her. Daisy smiled again, a little embarrassed this time, and turned around once more. Ferdinand sidled up next to her and stood there for a time in embarrassed silence. "What's the matter?" asked Daisy, who was beginning to think he no longer found her attractive.

"Nothing, nothing," said Ferdinand dismissively. "I was just wondering..."

"Yes?" asked Daisy anxiously.

"Don't you want to talk a little bit first?"

Daisy stopped chewing her cud and stared at him.

Ferdinand, clearly embarrassed, tried to explain himself. "You know, just sort of get to know each other. Warm up before getting too intimate."

Daisy backed up slowly to check whether Ferdinand had become a steer. No, that wasn't it.

"What exactly do you mean, 'Warm up'?" she asked in a slow, dignified drawl.

"Well, I just meant, you know, there's no need to be too hasty about things. We've got plenty of time."

"Ferdinand," Daisy replied, "I did not come over here to engage you in conversation."

"Well, it doesn't have to be a conversation," Ferdinand answered. "Just some small talk, maybe some nuzzling. Doesn't it seem a little beastly just to jump into the act right away? It makes me feel like an animal."

Daisy was thoroughly disgusted by now. "You are an animal," she spat at him. "And it does not seem in the least beastly to do what comes perfectly naturally. I'm going to leave here now with what little dignity I have left. I will give you one more chance next time, but I will not be humiliated like this again." With that she strutted out of Ferdinand's pen, moving her tail ostentatiously back and forth as she went.

Ferdinand lay down frustrated in the grass. He had never felt so worthless. He had glimpsed that the union of a cow and a bull could be so much more than a simple animal pairing; it could be a trascendent experience, a chance to be more than just a bovine. But what good was that vision when everyone else still thought of it in such base terms?

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