PCR past banners Now in our fourth calendar year
PCR #186  (Vol. 4, No. 42)  This edition is for the week of October 13--19, 2003.

The Civil War Ghosts That Roam Key West

by Will Moriaty
"Mystic River"
by Mike Smith
Beer Guzzling, Fried Food Eatiní, SUV driviní Nirvana
by Ashley Lauren
Terry Schiavo....Roy Horn and Montecore

by John Lewis
From This Week's Editorial....Check The Alleys of London....Fields of Greed....Do the Bartman....Bob Zemeckis and Nostradamus....Ahoy Mateys!....On Broadway
 by Mike Smith
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Creature's Corner

How's everybody doing. I hope the answer is: Fine. Ah, another week and another column. Work has been stacking up and post production on The Phone Call is keeping me real busy. Now I know why so many filmmakers have assistants, people behind the scenes to help ease the workload. It seems like those who dwell within these walls take on more of a passive role. Oh well. Onward and forward, here we go...

Terry Schiavo
I guess we're going to hear quite a bit over the next few days about Terry Schiavo's battle to stay alive. I won't repeat all the details as the media has done a good enough job of that. Instead, I'll just tell you what I think. Is it right or wrong to unhook this woman from her lifeline; that's a good question. The problem seems to be that she is not really on life support. Her basic motor functions seem to be intact. All that is being done is that her mode of taking in nutrition is being removed. She will die from dehydration sometime over the next two weeks. I think most people would agree that this is a fairly gruesome way to allow someone to die "peacefully."

When someone is on "life support" and the decision is made to "pull the plug" nobody seems to have a problem with that because death usually comes within minutes. Depriving a "functioning" body of nutrition causes a lingering death sequence that can take from several days to two weeks. That is why this case has stirred up so much publicity. I was always under the opinion that we do not kill people who are not on life support. Terry is NOT on life support. She is a living, breathing human being that has extremely challenging needs for survival. I, for one, see no reason that she should not be allowed the right to live like any of the rest of us. Is she living a productive life? Most definitely not. Can she be rehabilitated....probably not. She has been in this state of limbo for nearly twelve years with no change. But, she is NOT DEAD. Her body continues to function on its own as long as food is provided. With advances in medical technology racing at an ever-increasing pace, who knows what could be done for her in the near future. Sadly, we will never know because her feeding tube has been removed.

I think that deep inside most of us know that it is probably best to allow her to die. We just need to come up with a better way to ease the transition for the journey of people like Terry to the "other side." Then maybe there would be more support for difficult decisions like these.

Roy Horn and Montecore
I've waited for a couple weeks to comment on this but now I feel the time has come. Yes dear faithful readers (all five of you) it is time for another opinion on the recent attack on Roy Horn by one of the now famous "White Tigers" used in the Siegfried and Roy stage show in Las Vegas. There is so much speculation on why the attack happened with lots of commentary and psycho- analyzing the situation. "PSYCHO" is the key word here people. In case many of you have forgotten about the real world and how it operates let me refresh you. Tigers are predators in the wild and just because we take them from their environment and keep them like "domesticated" dogs and cats does not change their basic instincts. These instincts have been ingrained in these animals since the species has existed. One or two generations of captive breeding does not change what nature has taken 10's of thousands of years to breed into the species. Though calm in most cases, these animals are still quite capable of unleashing the fury they are known for, and heaven help you if you're around when it happens.

(Roy's partner Siegfried has gone on record as saying the tiger in question, named Montecore, was trying to "protect" Roy from the sudden rush of personnel following a stumble, and was accidentally a little too rough on Roy's neck in the process of dragging him offstage. Montecore, who had been kept in quarantine these last few weeks, has tested negative for rabies, and has rejoined the tigers' special living facility in Las Vegas.---N)

I had an incident happen to me involving three tigers that luckily turned out okay for everyone involved (including the tigers). It could have easily turned into a major disaster. One day (when I have a little time) I will relate the story here in the PCR. I have developed a very deep respect for these beautiful animals and the fury they can unleash at the blink of an eye.

When working with tigers there are certain protocols that are used. One of them (as stupid as this might sound) is to offer them a special greeting that tigers use when they come across each other in their natural habitat.

Animal attacks on the people that work with them are not new. Many performers have died in the steel cage at the mercy of giant cats as well as other species (bears, elephants, and even zebras). Most people who work with these animals will tell you that if there is an accident it usually involves the "friendly" ones as the "unpredictable" ones are carefully scrutinized. It is possible that Mr. Hood may have lowered his guard at a particularly vulnerable moment which resulted in the attack. I wish him a speedy recovery and I know he will once again work with these majestic animals. This is what these people live for and usually even a brutal attack will not cause them to shy away from what they do.

Anyway, I just wanted to voice my opinion. After all, who better to talk about nature's creatures than...

"The Creature From Clearwater."  Have a Great Weekend everyone. C-Ya next week!

"Creature's Corner" is ©2003 by John Lewis.  Webpage design and all graphics herein are creations of Nolan B. Canova.  All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2003 by Nolan B. Canova.