horsey harry

October 16, 2008


First things first. The poster is brilliantbrilliantbrilliant. Its both striking and smart.

Secondly, I don’t mean to be on a vegan spiel but recently that seems to be my nitch. So, be warned but please read on.

I went and saw ‘Equus’ tonight with James after eating at Zen Palate. Good company, good eatins, good weather. (Rode the bike for the first time in a bit, that rain.. it makes me into one lazy blob…anyway beauteous fall NYC day.)

Don’t know Equus? Me neither until tonight and this is more or less my immediate reaction.

So, this ‘normal’ 17 year old boy blinds a bunch of horses and this is so incredibly horrific to people.  Yah, horses are pretty awesome, it seems pretty fucked up to me too. But the jury wants to put him in jail for life. The parents of this kid have individual break downs more or less because they are seen to be at fault by outsiders. I mean they raised a blinder of horses, right? Ehhm. GROSS.  But jail for life? That’s pretty intense considering the fact that this doesn’t even typically happen for gang rape or matters of this sort. Anyway, it was written in the 1970’s in England and based on a true story… how much I’m not sure but in any case we can assume that the people in the town where this took place reacted quite venomously.  The story is really dark and complex which makes it enjoyable. I’m sure its a good read too.  I’d like to give it a shot not so much because I like reading plays but you know I can be hard of hearing and I missed a lot in that theater foh shoh.  

I swear I didn’t only focus on the vegan thing throughout the one to two hour play. But I can’t help it when the focal point of the work was animal abuse. The suppressed sexuality is a whole other can of worms.

Animal abuse is FUCKED UP, right?  Most people will admit that they have a harder time seeing an animal in pain versus a human.  But its such a contradiction! Do you have any idea what kind of torture the chicken you go through before you eat them? Google ‘de-beaking’ if you want to know more but it is chopping off part of the birds beak so that they can’t peck each other since they live is flocks up to 80,000. According to John Robbins it ‘requires cutting through highly sensitive tissue, similar to the tender sensitive flesh under human fingernails and causes the animals severe pain.’  Remember slamming your fingers in the car door when you were a kid? I did that a lot it seems, always my thumb on the right hand. That shit SUCKS. The thought of chopping off a birds beak…. no pain reliever….nada… is plain ole disgusting.

AND that isn’t even the full story, not even close. Over half a million baby chicks (males that egg warehouses have no use for) are disposed of by being thrown into plastic bags to suffocate….everyday. Any other way may cost money so… profits profits profits.  Capitalism at its prime I tell ya! Think it a bit strange that a huge manufacturer of pencils and helicopters also invests in chicken? Nah, man. Its a profitable business!

My question is… is it because the horses had to suffer and were blinded rather than facing a ‘painless’ death that it is so disturbing to people? If you have the idea in your head that the animals you eat do not suffer relentlessly before making it to your plate… think again.  Even its just a horse thing… what about GELATIN?

Here are a few quotes from ‘Diet for a New America’ by John Robbins that help emphasize my point:

  • The way we treat animals is indicative of the way we treat out fellow humans.
  • A reliance on instinct is very different from a lack of ability to feel pain.
  • We have a very convenient and self-serving way of defining intelligence.

You don’t have to be an animal rights activist or even an animal lover to think that its fucked up.  Animals have a central nervous system they feel physical pain, when blinded for example. They also are capable of love and of GRIEF which is what catches the psychiatrist up. That’s all. Maybe a bit long winded but that’s more or less it. If you go on too long, people stop thinking your smart and you come off as a fanatic. No thanks.

Technical stuff about the play?

WELL….It was a bit weird to see Daniel Radcliffe in the role and to see him naked.  He has to be under loads of pressure to shed that Harry Potter skin and he…. tried pretty hard. I’m not trying to be critical, he was good. He just tried hard.  The role didn’t seem to come naturally to him. Whoever played the mother wasn’t such a good actress. Yes, she was a distressed ex-school teaching religion mum….. but eh. She was too desperate, her voice was too strained. Meh.


That psychiatrist played by the mean fat uncle in Harry Potter (Richard Griffiths)… he was ON POINT.