Sunday, April 29, 2012

Pigs: Closing the Beta Site

As much as this culture loves its hamburgers, hot dogs, and chicken nuggets, I am continually surprised at how hard it is to raise a few animals for your own consumption. We're a big, fat, bacon-loving country, but when and where you can raise pigs is regulated almost to impossibility for the common man. It's fine to get over-processed, low-quality eggs on a muffin for breakfast every single day, but it is an imposition on one's neighbors to raise chickens and enjoy fresh, delicious breakfast protein from your own back yard. Even if you are operating completely within the rules, one overly sensitive neighbor can make your life miserable with threats and unpleasantries, no matter how unfounded.

That's exactly what happened at the Beta Site; one small-minded neighbor overreacted and ruined the whole arrangement. Our host loved having the pigs in his back yard. He could show them off to family and friends, he had a constant supply of high quality pork, and he didn't have to do any of the work. All that changed the day his dog- a big, overfed, lazybones of a Rottweiler- wandered into the neighbor's yard and startled an adult caregiver. The homeowner threatened our host with making complaints to the authorities about the dog and about the pigs, and now the pigs must go.

That's right, we are moving the pigs... AGAIN.

The bad news (for you, good news for us) is that we have gotten very good at relocating the pigs. That means there is no funny story like the first time (story here). There is only the news that once again we are being persecuted for our lifestyle. Slaughtering and fence-building are being completed in a rushed manner, not the measured, thought-out way we prefer. The Gamma Site is being set up in a hurry, and the adult pigs are being put down rapidly. Speaking of which, I really must be going. I have to rearrange the freezer... again...


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