Geralyn Wichers

"Life is a great adventure, or nothing"

This must be what it feels like to be a bear in a zoo, or an ape or something.

A group of gaping tourists stand outside my doors, goggling through the big windows. A lady in a white lab-coat waves her hands and says: “Observe, a female of the species ‘Coateris Pharmeceuticalis’.”

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So I make sure I’m doing something ‘coater-like’–i.e. looking over my paperwork. But as soon as they’ve passed by, I return to my original posture–slumped in my chair, deep in thought, or with my nose pressed up against the window of the coating pan, watching the guns spray, lulled into a stupor by the soothing sounds of, say, two industrial mixers running full tilt!

(Coateris pharmaceuticalis have been observed with peculiar bits of chartreuse foam in their ears. It is suspected this is to dull the noise of the roaring mixers)

I spend many a day in a box-shaped room, alone. My companions are a huge machine called a coating pan, tanks, mixers, and various other implements I need to do my job. But most of the time I don’t use them. The pan runs on it’s own, and I just take readings every quarter-hour.

So I pace: round and round and round. Every now and again, my zoo-keeper/supervisor will stick his head in and ask if I need something.

Coffee. I need coffee.

No coffee for coateris pharmaceuticalis!

Darn.

I’ve considered bringing more of my life into the coating room. Back in the day I’d write blog posts on paper towels, but I found out this was strictly verboten and was forced to cease and desist. They can’t stop me from composing them mentally, though, along with grocery lists, to-do lists, menu plans–heck, even monthly budgets.

I also thought about working out while the pan was running (after all you can do squats anywhere). But the thought of being observed by a troop of people in white lab-coats while performing a set of lunges was a bit too far to stretch my imagination.

Pacing it is.

The good news is that I have plenty of time to contemplate the deep mysteries of life–like, if I was a zoo animal, what animal would I be?

After much thought, I decided I was an ape because I could totally see an ape (in blue scrubs) doing my job (while whistling).

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The difficulty would be the hairnet…

I know there is life outside the process room, and if some ninja-penguins or PETA activists would just bust me out, I’d see it. So tell me: what zoo animal are you, and what does your habitat look like? Then when I’m stuck pacing in mine I’ll have something to think about.

And how do I get them to bring me coffee?

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2 thoughts on “My Life as a Zoo Animal

  1. a mother says:

    There’s this old story of the young men who were locked in a room…they used ink to draw spots on themselves…then lay on the floor like they were ill. Sure enough- it worked! Someone peered into the room and was alarmed at their state. In a short time they were carried out…Got any ink in there?

    1. I have a pen. Not sure if that would be convincing. 🙂

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