Posts Tagged ‘blowback’

The Ankle-Nibbling Revolution

July 25, 2016

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A Simple Life

Field mice had been living in Chinatown for a century, surviving mainly on the dropped egg-tarts of shoppers and the ripped garbage bags full of day-old pastry. It was a tough life, but there were some years (1967, 1976) where the life was easy because of a surge in tourism and wasted food. Our protagonist, Roguz, was almost two months old when he developed a technological change that revolutionized the lives of the mice that were affiliated with him and his family.

An Ordinary Day

While babysitting his rascally little nephew Salza, Roguz was forced to leave him alone for a few seconds. When Roguz finally turned around, Salza was nibbling on the ankle of a young human girl. As he approached Salza and told him to stop, a large, half-unfinished egg-tart fell in front of his face, and the scolding was quickly forgotten. This “50% remaining” would feed Roguz’s family for a week.

ankle nibbling

Eureka

Most mice in Chinatown just work and consume, but Rugoz had a stubborn philosophical side to him, and he went back to the dark corner of the sewer where he was staying and thought about what he had seen. Eureka! A new technology was born – ankle nibbling!

He patented his idea, and then shared it with some select allies (for a price). For the next 3 months, the frantic search for food disappeared from Chinatown’s mouse population, and obesity rates took off – a sure sign of success.

Diminishing Returns

Mice  never seem to be able to predict the consequences of their technological changes. A few years after the ankle-nibbling revolution took off, humans started to notice the uptick in “Mice Terror,” as their newspapers called the phenomenon. The following season, the number of humans visiting Chinatown dropped by two thirds, Local merchants reacted by designing a drop-proof egg-tart box, and by publishing information on how to avoid mouse-nibbling.

Suddenly, there were no more dropped egg-tarts and no garbage bags full of day-old pastry. The mouse population was quickly reduced to less than a third of what it had been before the new technology was introduced. Most of the survivors had to make due with the rotten corpses of other dead animals, road dirt, and sewer runoff. Roguz died a proud old mouse, with prizes and trophies lining his walls, long before the mass starvation of egg-tart-obese mice began, but his nephew survived it and went on to become a preacher.

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