Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Ethical Mermaid

Dear Jeepers:
Last night, a ship wrecked above our cave. The humans flailed about in the water, then disappeared onto a lip of land. Now their belongings float above us, some drifting slowly down--teacups and laminated maps, soggy rolls of toilet paper, backgammon pieces, bras and rubber boots.

Can I ethically take any of the clothes? Or should I gather them and swim to the island where the castaways are stranded, and return them?

Meredith Carib-Townsend

Dear Ms. Carib-Townsend,
We are not ethicists. An ethicist would answer: "By all means take a few of the items. As the castaways will certainly have more immediate concerns--like food and shelter from Tropical Storm ZZ Top--you may properly keep whatever you like."

We, on the other hand, are too overcome with a flood of questions for YOU to waste time answering any of yours. WHY would a mermaid want a shirt? HOW do you procreate? Is it any fun at ALL? What do you DO all day? Did you have anything to do with the shipwreck? Will you swim to a rock off the island's shore and beckon to the stranded sailors, who will strain with all their might as they swim through the waves, over the reef, to be by your side?



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