LS: Bruce Cameron Column October 26, 2008

Bruce the pig no relative of mine

An alert reader recently sent me a Sept. 24 AP story about a pig named Bruce and asked me if I were somehow related.

By “alert,” I, of course, mean “smarty pants.” The story, though, is one I think a lot of women can relate to: Caroline Hayes, 63, of Uki, New South Wales, Australia, had a pig move into her house with her and demand she feed it and take care of it. When Caroline complained, the porker grew hostile, until Caroline felt that she was virtually hostage in her own home.

When Caroline went to bed at night, the pig would head-butt her door, banging on it, demanding to be let in. Again, this is behavior I think a lot of women can identify with. In the most offensive incident it was 4 a.m., so Bruce had been out most the night doing Lord only knew what, didn’t call to let her know where he was, and then he shows up at her door and, without apology or explanation, expects to be welcomed like a returning hero. What a pig!

Bruce is “a beautiful male,” Caroline was quoted as saying, “but he’s just so big and so pushy.”

Why are so many women attracted to the bad boys?

It all started with an act of kindness: Bruce the pig wandered into Caroline’s yard with an infected eye.

(Yes, the pig had a sty. I can’t help it.) Caroline treated the eye and fed Bruce some dinner, and, well, one thing led to another.

Next thing you know, Bruce was making himself at home, sitting in front of the TV and bellowing for Caroline to bring him a beer.

Her friends didn’t know what to do. They were uncomfortable with how Bruce treated Caroline but didn’t want to jeopardize their own relationships with her by pointing out some of his flaws. Perhaps if they ignored Bruce’s piggish behavior, Caroline would eventually come to her senses, maybe invite them all over for ham sandwiches.

His eye cleared up almost immediately, but Bruce, determined to milk his disability leave for all it was worth, didn’t go back to work, didn’t help around the house, didn’t do anything, really, except demand that Caroline take care of him.

This went on for 10 days or so, Caroline becoming increasingly disenchanted with the relationship. When she complained, though, Bruce just snorted — in his view, if she was unhappy, that was her problem, not his.

Their disputes eventually grew violent: Caroline poked Bruce with a broomstick, and yes, she probably knows she shouldn’t have done it, but she’d had it with the way he wallowed in his self-pity and was always rooting around in her belongings. But Bruce weighs 176 pounds and is built, in Caroline’s words,
“like a Shetland Pony.” The boorish boar snatched the broomstick out of her hands and snapped it in half.

Marriage counselors will tell you that relationships can withstand almost anything as long as the two parties respect each other.

Clearly, for Caroline, this last incident was the broomstick that broke the camel’s back. Citing irreconcilable differences, she demanded Bruce move out. When he refused, she called the authorities.

Police often say that domestic disturbances are their least favorite, and this one was no exception. They tried to stick Bruce in a dog cage, but what saved his bacon was that he was too big to pull into the thing.

(One hundred and seventy-six pounds is a lot of pulled pork.)

Caroline told reporters that it was “like putting an elephant in a dog cage,” apparently feeling that describing the event as being “like putting a pony-sized pig in a dog cage” wouldn’t adequately communicate the problem.

The following day, the police returned with an elephant-sized dog cage, somehow coaxing Bruce into it.

And where did they take him? To a stud farm.

That’s right, his punishment for treating women so poorly is that he gets to have all the girlfriends he wants. That’s justice?

The authorities defend their action as far more humane than sending Bruce to the deli counter. But I reject this lame explanation— to me, they’re just trying to put lipstick on a pig.


To write Bruce Cameron, visit his Website at http://www.wbrucecameron.com.


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