The word “absurd” has reached a new dimension of meaning today. Also forever changed have the words “ridiculous” and “ludicrous”.
Animal rights organisation Peta has asked the Pet Shop Boys to change their name. For the sake of shelter dogs. Or pet shop dogs. Or pets generally – I can’t exactly remember which as my mind was too busy jumping back and forth between variations of LOL and WTF while I was reading the Times article.
(Yes, I’m reading Times Online again after a temporary boycot following the Michelle Obama fake lashes investigation.)
So, Peta thinks the Pet Shop Boys should change their name, which they chose for themselves more than 20 years ago, and which has pretty much become a household name in the music scene. Apparently, that rather random band name does not comply with political correctness. In the universe of pets, that is. And maybe also in the universe of complete numpties.
The politically correct name suggested for the Pet Shop Boys by Peta is – and you might want to hold on to your desk for this one – the Rescue Shelter Boys.
And here we pause for a moment to let you finish ROFLing, catch your breath and climb back on your chair.
Yes, they’re serious.
Peta reckons that listening to the Rescue Shelter Boys instead of the Pet Shop Boys will make people stop buying bred pets in shops and get their puppies and kittens from – you guessed it – rescue shelters instead.
Now. Nothing wrong with Peta’s good intentions here. We all know the devastating consequences of breeding on the health and general well-being of all sorts of dog breeds. And birds don’t belong into cages. And so on. In short, pet shops are bad. I’d go with that any time. I got my dog from a rescue shelter in Greece. The poor pup had been through five years of neglect, abuse and disease, and yet she’s the loveliest, cuddliest, most loyal dog you could possibly imagine. My money, and my pets, will never cross the counter of a pet shop.
But I seriously doubt that a pop band’s name will in any way influence anyone’s pet buying habits. People who like bred cats or dogs will buy ridiculously overpriced bred cats or dogs no matter what the Pet Shop Boys call themselves. I even doubt that name has ever led anyone to think of actual pets. Anyone but Peta, that is.
Well, Peta got me to think about it now. But their suggestion has made me think more along the lines of “are you guys fucking kidding?” than of anything relating to animals.
They’re not kidding, by the way. And neither are they kidding with their campaign to turn fish into Sea Kittens to make them more likeable (and less appetizing). I can’t quite shake off the impression, though, that Peta’s Sea Kittens might fail to appeal to anyone above nursery age.
Just to round up. Peta = good. I’m all for ethical treatment of animals. I mean, I gave up sushi and chicken fajitas for squirrel’s sake (and I’m sticking with it). And I still can’t read about the slaughter of baby seals in Canada without bursting into tears. Well, you get the picture. That said, I really don’t think Peta is doing itself a favour, in terms of being taken seriously or getting people to support it, with petitions à la Rescue Shop Boys (or Sea Kittens, for that matter).
Although I have to admit I’m a little curious what name change they would suggest for Fury In The Slaughterhouse.
Bliss On The Free Range Farm, anyone?