NEWS that Edinburgh Zoo's penguins will no longer perform their daily promenade has rocked the world of people who like to see penguins perform their daily promenade.
To bring citizens unfamiliar with the phenomenon up to speed, the current situation is as follows: every day at 2:25pm, the penguins are allowed out of their enclosure that they might waddle among the leiges. The zoo's literature describes the parade as "voluntary".
Well, now there's no choice as the parade is off for three months, while repairs are carried out on the penguin pool, and the beasties are shipped off to Belfast, Denmark and Englandshire. This is grim news indeed. The BBC urgently dispatched a reporter to the locus and, in distressing scenes, the distraught penguins tried to peck at his legs.
Once, I suffered a similar indignity in the demesne of Sir Tam Dalyell, only it was peacocks pecking at ma troosers. Ever since that day, I have never again attached seeds and grains to the outside of my clothing: lesson learned.
Everybody loves a penguin, though citizens today are unfamiliar with how routinely cruel humans were to them and all other species in the recent past. Explorers' accounts mock the penguins for being so friendly and innocent, and speak of how easy they were to biff on the heid, either for fun or food.
If I were a penguin, I wouldn't micturate on the human race, but still they put up with us, even as we gather to gawp at them waddling through their zoological demesne with a gait that might fairly be described as gallus and wearing expressions that can only be designated glaikit.
Fine little fellows. We shall miss them for three months and pray that they do not pick up bad habits or become louche during their stay away.
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