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Twenty - One Years Excerpts: Oliver And Hardy

Over the next few weeks, I became quite friendly with the pigs and even had pet names for them, Oliver and Hardy, named after my favourite comedy duo on television. These pigs were all personality and just as much fun. Over supper one night Oliver was about to get unwanted attention because of his obesity. Around here it was one of the first things that could get you killed. 
The old man intoned, “He’s ready,” though I’m sure Oliver didn’t think so.
“We can do it tomorrow,” Tommy said without looking up from his cooked chicken, who had only been killed a few days before. Within an hour of her demise, she had been stripped of her plumage, drained of her blood, hung on a wall, and I had seen the whole thing. Her end too had started off with a casual remark of “maybe chicken this week,” spoken by Mrs. Lyons, and now Oliver was getting the same casual treatment. The preamble was already over, his fate sealed, and he had less than twenty-four hours to live. The worst part was, I would become one of his executioners, or at least I helped in making him meet his maker where pigs fly on weightless wings. Tommy, Brendan, a neighbour, and I, moved the next morning to get Oliver.
He was munching away on his favourite delicacy and last supper, potatoes when it all ended fifteen minutes later, held down on a table with a butchers knife at his throat, and a bucket beneath his head to catch the torrent of blood that would surely follow. It didn’t quite work to plan out like that as Tommy ran the knife on it’s deadly journey. Oliver leapt from the table despite being held by ropes, three men and a boy, and a fatal wound to his neck, and then ran a few hundred feet. He then looked around as if unsure whether he was still in this world or the next, sniffed the air and fell over and was dead before he hit the ground. I started crying uncontrollably. The next day, Oliver was reduced to body parts and fitted nicely into a salt barrel. Over time, bits of him would be fished out and served up for dinner, in protest, I refused the first offerings of Oliver, but as the weeks passed, I got over it and found that old Ollie was quite tasty. I was becoming a right little farmer and didn’t know it.

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