By Richard Pachymort
As human beings played video games or watched episodes of their favorite television drama series on Friday evening, elephants slipped into extinction—marking the end of what had been the largest living land animal since the demise of the woolly mammoth 4,500 years ago.
The last elephant, a 3.5-ton female named Donna, died alone at 8:47 p.m. on a concrete platform at a zoo in the United States. The zoo asked that its name and location be withheld out of fear that news of Donna’s death in captivity would spark protests and possibly even reprisals by other large mammals, endangered giraffes in particular.
“This really pisses me off,” said a West African giraffe in a Skype interview from Niger early Saturday morning. “Do people think the rest of us big mammals are just going to go quietly, without putting up any kind of a fight? The poor elephants went down because they didn’t organize themselves and they never learned how to defend their habitat. Look, people are clever and mean; they don’t give a shit about us. They’d stick the last few hundred of us in a refuge and let tourists photograph us till we die out. Um, excuse me, no! We may go down but we’ll go down kicking some ass along the way—some human ass.”
Another large mammal, a hippopotamus from rural Guinea, also spoke ill of people but was opposed to using violence against them.
“We don’t have the numbers to mount an offensive against people,” the hippo said by text message. “An attack would be suicide. We could gather every living hippo, rhino and giraffe, fly them by military transport plane to the U.S., and we’d still have trouble conquering Houston. As for the elephants, with their poor eyesight and gentle personalities they never stood a chance against the viciousness of humans, who, till the very end, killed them for their tusks. Precious ivory! All those ivory trinkets, figurines, chopsticks, knife handles—I guess those are worth more to people than living elephants are.”