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And now for something completely different…


(China Diary back shortly)

Imagine you have a beloved pet. And it dies. (I know, this part is sad.) So, is it just me, or is it perfectly normal to look at poor Fluffy’s mortal remains and think, ‘I’ll just call a taxidermist. No. Wait. I’ll stuff him myself. It’ll be easy peasy.

And apparently lots of people do have a go. I give you, for example:




Or even:


I find taxidermy rather bizarre, even when it’s done by professionals. But attempting it yourself, as a little light entertainment on a long winter evening??? (Enough with the question marks, ed).

And where do you start? Do these people just pick up a pair of scissors and get stuck in (literally), or do they have some kind of practical experience? In, say, upholstery or remedial basket work in a home for the bewildered? Maybe some people, after bringing a piano stool back to life, then looked at a donkey and thought, hmmmm:


Or maybe not.

Imagine the scene. Bonzo has barked his last, and with a sudden light of enthusiasm sparking in your mad scientist eyes, you assemble the kitchen scissors, a needle and thread and a couple of bags of cotton wool balls, and begin. Several hours later your partner/care-worker arrives to find you elbow deep in gore and sawdust. What, please tell me, do you say?

‘Oh, hello.’

Or, ‘You’re back early.’

Or even, ‘Could you thread this needle for me?’

Still, amateur pet stuffers, take heart. Think of the man at Gripsholm Castle in Sweden, 350 years ago, who was presented with a lion skin and told to make it scary. He did his best:


All pictures courtesy of Facebook page Badly Stuffed Animals

About elainecanham

I started blogging because I'm a writer, and I thought I ought to. Now I realise that I blog because I lwant to; even when I can't think of much to say. I do a lot of work for local businesses - get in touch if you like my style.


26 thoughts on “And now for something completely different…

  1. What a riot! Thanks, Elaine. Peace, John

    Posted by John Coleman | April 17, 2015, 4:28 pm
  2. Oh God, these are freaky!

    Posted by girlunoccupied | April 17, 2015, 11:25 am
  3. Just back from a short break and catching up with your posts – this one made me choke on my coffee, but in a good way 🙂

    Posted by Jools | April 17, 2015, 10:53 am
  4. Thanks Elaine for a wonderful evening . .. I am working in London this week and it has been this series of blog posts that has made dinner alone not a trial. Having laughed out loud over this post it is time to save the rest of your China trip for tomorrow.

    Posted by Alex | April 13, 2015, 11:19 pm
  5. Oh my. That lion is… Oh my

    Posted by The JellyFish | April 13, 2015, 7:33 pm
  6. No. No. No. Take a photo–a good one. Frame it. Hang it on the Wall. That’s better, isn’t it?

    Posted by Let's CUT the Crap! | April 13, 2015, 7:29 pm
  7. I think there’s more than a touch of the moon about some of these people. I wonder who lost their false teeth for the lion?
    xxx Huge Hugs xxx

    Posted by davidprosser | April 13, 2015, 4:56 pm
  8. I cannot imagine doing this at all–I just lost our 14-yr old Dachshund, Maxi, and although very upset at his passing, I would hate to see him stiff and unmoving every time I caught sight of him on display! Photographs in a scrapbook for me, to remind me of his life. Enjoyed the humor in the article–scary pictures, too.

    Posted by Vivra Beene | April 13, 2015, 4:02 pm
    • Glad it didn’t upset you, Vivra. I think stuffing a favourite pet has to be way up there on the list of top ten creepiest things. But these ones did make me laugh.

      Posted by elainecanham | April 13, 2015, 4:51 pm
  9. I think all of these are challenging depictions of the fragmented modern consciousness and precariousness of gender certainty. Damien Hirstesque, even. I don’t know what you people are laughing at. Plus, The first one looks how I feel. How very dare you.

    Posted by Tara Sparling | April 13, 2015, 3:18 pm
    • Damn. I never thought of Damien Hirst. You mean these are art????? Of course. Although they are less a depiction of fragmented modern consciousness, and more a statement of being (in Mr Hirst’s own words) ‘simultaneously life and death incarnate in a way you don’t quite grasp until you see it’.
      I feel more like the lion, personally.

      Posted by elainecanham | April 13, 2015, 3:34 pm
    • It’s art if it is. And as a consequence, when it’s not, depending on the is-ness of the not. Obviously. Didn’t you do this in school?

      Posted by Tara Sparling | April 13, 2015, 3:56 pm
    • Metaphysics is not my strong point. So I’m just going to nod wisely, here, Tara, and wait for you to get the drinks in.

      Posted by elainecanham | April 13, 2015, 4:52 pm
  10. If only they were fitted with castors, their owners could walk them to the park and get them trundling after a stick. Had a seriously good laugh at your post.

    Posted by Nolsie | April 13, 2015, 1:33 pm
  11. I love my dog. I think my dog is very cute. I conside myself to be fairly crafty. I can’t imagine thinking this would be a good idea at all.

    Posted by dhippensteel | April 13, 2015, 12:47 pm

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