Live Death


Innumerable homes in London are built on the banks of the river Thames. Every weekend, we see lines of middle-aged men seated patiently by the river, with a fishing rod in hand. They just sit there from morning till noon, calm, serene and absolutely content (atleast, that’s the way it seems).

Once the Brat actually went up to an elderly gentleman and asked him ‘Excuse me, Mr.Fisherman, can you teach me how to fish?’ To which the old man gave him a wry look and said ‘I’ve been here all day, and haven’t caught a single fish!‘. The brat didn’t get the irony ofcourse πŸ˜‰ but it was funny!

Last Sunday, there was this much awaited SALE (:-)) at NeXt. So as soon as I woke up, I grabbed my purse and headed to the mall πŸ˜‰ Knight in shining armour declared I was ‘official'(ly crazy). But then, the stores had all opened by 5:30 am, and on the high street, serpentine queues would have formed that early!! Technically, I was running late by almost 3 hours!!

Anyway, I digress. So as I crossed this little bridge across my house, I saw two Chinese guys apparently fishing in the river. ‘What a waste of time, they aren’t going to catch anything here!’ I thought to myself. But suddenly one of the guys jumped excitedly. He had caught a fish!! It was a nice silvery one, and not small by any means. Not too big either. From where I was watching, it seemed to be just a little bigger than the size of a palm.

I was quite excited for them! In the last six years here, I have never seen anybody actually catching a fish πŸ™‚

But what followed after that, busted my bubble of joy 😦 The fish started jumping about, obviously struggling to get back into the water. I felt a little sorry for the fish. And then, while one guy tried to hold the fish down to the ground, the other guy took out his camera and took a video recording 😦 That was when I felt sick at the pit of my stomach.

This has nothing to do with being a vegetarian (which I am) or a non-vegetarian (which I used to be). I don’t wish to discuss ethics/morality/vaues in being or not being a vegetarian.

This is beyond that. It is about some creature that was alive and kicking a minute ago, but struggling now, to simply breathe and live.

And more importantly, this is about how someone can derive pleasure out of watching it die 😦 😦 😦 I don’t understand this.

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39 thoughts on “Live Death

  1. true… 😦 😦 thats why I hate going to buy Chicken 😦

    Oh no, that must be even worse! But you atleast wouldn’t take a video recording of the chicken being slaughtered, would you?

    1. I can’t see it… leave about taking video…
      As a kid I used to see very eagerly the slaughtering of cock and goat from close during temple festivals… but now I am not going there… its better…

      😦 😦 Again, surprises me to think that people slaughter and sacrifice animals in the name of God 😦

  2. I can’t understand it either. As a kid I once threw a basket of small orange fishes back in water (while picnicking) … now I think that must have been ‘live bait’.

    Don’t know what to say. This is again bordering on what Batul said – about ethics of vegetarianism – which I was sure this post was not about πŸ™‚

  3. Yes, its one thing to catch a fish, but to video tape the whole thing of struggle to live, is cruelty. It saddens the heart….
    It does, Uma!!

    But LOL @ ur insistence to shop so early morning !!! πŸ™‚ We shld go shopping together… πŸ™‚
    It saddened me so much I lost the enthu for shopping! But then, duty beckoned and I had to buy what I had to buy πŸ˜‰ I’d LOVE to go shopping with you. Next month, hopefully πŸ˜‰

  4. Pallavi, but what it does boil down to is the ethics of vegetarianism, doesn’t it? (I’m a non-vegetarian) People have always photographed their hunt. And it’s disconcerting, to say the least.

    Banno, I don’t think so, actually. The fish would have probably just died in the river, for all we know, by being eaten up by a bigger fish!! I just don’t appreciate how the guy took a video recording of the poor fish gasping and dying 😦

  5. Its the same instinct by which hunters photograph themselves with their kill(Tigers, lions etc) …I think ….

    Right, but after they have captured and killed the ‘beast’. But I guess there will be people who would like to record moments of their ‘victory’!

  6. 😦

    I am a non vegetarian. I enjoy my food. But, I wish for the shortest, fastest death for any animal which I am going to have.

    Beyond me… recording the last dying moments of a fish!!!!

    Roger that, Aathira. Like I said, to me, this isn’t about being a vegetarian or non-vegetarian. Its about Live recording of a creature’s death! 😦

  7. I can never even go to a butcher’s shop. Thank God now everything is neatly packaged and sold from cold storage. To my (admittedly weird thinking) cold storage is food, getting something from a butcher’s is ewwww. Dont ask me to explain, I know its contradictory

    No, I think the same way, Ritu. I guess its just ‘ignorance is bliss’. I am sure you couldn’t eat a dish of tandoori chicken if you had just seen it being slaughtered and video-taped before being cooked!!

  8. That guy is a psychopath ! Period !

    He he he. He looked quite normal πŸ™‚ Which could mean a lot of ‘normal’ people are psycopaths! Or that being a psycopath is part of being a normal human being! Ugghhhh…

  9. I liked the irony of the old gent.
    Well agreed that hunters do take a photograph of their hunt to show it to other people but making a video of how a fish dies is beyond my understanding.

    Welcome here, Prateek! I like your web name .. Snow Leopard – sounds very exotic πŸ™‚ Yeah, the irony of the gent was classic πŸ™‚

  10. Fishing does require a lot of patience. I wonder how rich is the fauna in the Thames due to obvious reasons.

    Seems to be a peaceful activity on the face of it , Reema. But the intent behind fishing is rather cruel!

  11. I’ve always been a vegetarian and think that it’s sinful to eat something that could move about once…

    I turned Vegetarian too, Nive, about 5-6 years back. To me, its not about ‘sinning’ though. I just feel like throwing up at the thought of eating flesh! But again, by this post, I did not want to denounce being a non-vegetarian. I was only thinking how weird those two guys must have been to record a fish dying 😦

  12. I am a vegetarian too. But again as you said, without going into never ending debate of ethics related of it, I think anyone who does something like this, they just display the most insensitive side of their personality.
    Thanks for both dropping by and commenting, Parul! Agree with you on this, such incidents show the real nature of man!

  13. That is just sad.. watching Fish die?!! how twisted is that?! πŸ™„
    Exactly!!! Recording a fish die 😦 Utterly twisted!

    So, on a totally different note – what did you shop for?! πŸ˜€ had fun?!
    He he, just spilled the beans to Aswathy πŸ™‚ above!

  14. This is what the basic reason behind me turning veggie during childhood…till date I have not forgotton that particular incident.

    Must have been quite devastating, to take a drastic step, shree!

  15. i did not know you in london and when was this NEXT sale , I missed it , it seems .. 😦 i rmember when i ahd come here initially going to the janaury sale early morning 5am or so and standing in que.. NEVER AGAIN…
    Yeah, Bikram! When were you here? Or are you still here? 5 am in the Queue. Even I haven’t done that. YET πŸ™‚ But you’ve given me a great idea. Such things should be done atleast once in life πŸ˜‰
    it is sad what you described , I also cant understand the idea of fishing especially if they have to pull the poor fish out, see it struggling and then put it back in water.. why give so much pain to something, wish they got hooked to a line and dragged ..
    Exactly! How awful 😦
    I hate fishing as such…
    To look at, fishing seems to be such a calm pass-time, right? But if we think about it, its exactly ike Hunting. Waiting to kill some creature 😦

  16. Why would anybody want to do that ? Geek

    Pal, I forgot all the keys for emoticons . I will have to learn them all again I think !!! And what did you buy at the sale ?

    Hey, you got your turn at the Laptoppy today πŸ˜€ Yeah, people are cruel, Aswathy. Read Shail’s comment below, and thats even worse than the ‘live recording’ thing. Btw, emoticons- I know just a couple of them. Will email them to you πŸ™‚ And reg. the SAle LOL, I bought a pair of shoes, and a top. And lots of gifts to take to India πŸ™‚

  17. I don’t know if you have heard of the preparation of fish where it is dipped (except head) live in boiling oil and served while it is still breathing??! I saw it on Discovery or something and haven’t forgotten it. *shudders*

    Ughhhh!! That’s so inhuman, Shail!! Thanks for sharing the info, though. But really, how can people be so cruel?!!!

  18. sometimes at such instances..I feel like giving up being non-veg 😦

    πŸ™‚ I gave it up, because the thought of eating ‘flesh’ was repulsive!

  19. One man’s meat is another man’s poison they say
    there is no black , no white ,only large areas of grey
    either you are a predator or you become a prey
    and it is no secret, the world goes around only this way.

    The vegeterians think of the non-vegeterians as barbarians. Even among the non vegeterians we look down on people who eat fried roaches as gross. It is a delicacy in South east Asia. It is just perspective. How many people go to see bull fighting? How many of us shut down the TV when they show disasters? Even as children we loved to catch a dragonfly and pull out its wings.There is a streak in us that comes out once in a while and enjoys it.Just another perspective.Just another loooney. πŸ™‚

    Right, PRG. So it looks like this mean/violent/cruel streak is there in everybody. Isn’t that just so scary? Imagine how the world would be if this streak got the better of us πŸ™„ πŸ™„

  20. “It is about some creature that was alive and kicking a minute ago, but struggling now, to simply breathe and live.

    And more importantly, this is about how someone can derive pleasure out of watching it die I don’t understand this.”

    I couldn’t agree with you more…

    P.S. Sometimes… folks reminisce or go down nostalgia lane while pretending to fish…

    Yeah, Roshmi. I do understand how people find fishing therapeutic…. sigh!!

  21. Absolutely morbid,taking that video! I mean how much more insensitive and inhuman can we get.

    Having meat; or any non-veg is fine, perhaps, but wanting to experience the agony of a creature in the manner they did, is truly beyond me!

    Exactly my point, Usha! So heartless, isn’t it? Even watching is tolerable, I think, but recording a video of it was utterly disgusting!

  22. It is life my dear!! All I wud say is some things are beyond our control! If we think too much then we wud never be satisfied!!!

    Your last line is BANG ON… think too much and one will never be at peace!!

  23. Hello Pallavi Ji,

    Your post had a twist in its tail. I too have not been able to understand the Sadist’s pleasure – but such people, though rare, exist. What you saw is a microscopic manifestation of the pleasure that makes some humans murderers and rapists. You are right. It has nothing to do with vegetarianism…the repulsion came from the conscious desire of those boys to see pain and revel in it.

    Thank you for this thought-provoking post.
    Bye-bye,
    Gorakh Nath

    Thank YOU, GN, for visiting my blog and your kind comments…. I’ve been very irregular at blogging and reading other’s blogs lately, but I will get back on track soon, and will then innundate your blog with comments πŸ™‚

    1. I know what you mean. Happened with me once. I saw someone torturing a mouse. It is almost impossible to understand the motives…

      Gorakh Nath.

      Oh God, why are people so cruel??!!!!!! Must shoot all such people. Er, is that cruel too πŸ˜‰

  24. Live cooking .. the most disgusting thing I have come across. Shudders .
    Pleasure seeking inhuman behavior … I wonder how sadastic one can get !

    Really awful 😦

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