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Potbellied pig, anyone?

Alan "Lindy" Linda

Just recently, I saw an ad in a paper: "Needed, home for a potbellied pig. House trained. Nice pet." Etc. Etc.

We once got a baby pot bellied pig. A long time ago. It, she, was as wrinkly faced and cute as any wrinkly faced baby. We looked forward to watching her grow.

Into a demon from hell, was what she grew into.

Not her first summer, though. She was good one summer. She could root her way out the screen door to go outside, which she did faithfully. Then, the first signs of her personality began to show up. When she demanded to come inside, she banged the side of the house so hard flowerpots fell inside. Let her in, or she would huff and puff and root the house down.

She'll grow out of it, we said.

Then one day at the end of summer the farmer next door came driving into the yard, our precious baby in his lap. He raised pigs.

"She's in heat," he informed us. We brought her into the house.

She squealed at the top of her lungs, and took several suicide runs at the screen door, which we had hooked. In between runs, she tipped over chairs, large potted plants, and trashed the sofa.

She'll settle down, we said.

She raced upstairs and un-sheeted all the beds, screaming like a, well, like a stuck pig. And she kept this up all night. Like a swine possessed, she shoved furniture around all night long downstairs. In the morning, it looked like we had been invaded by berserk house-movers with loose bowels.

We got her spayed. Winter came. It snowed outside, and she refused to put her feet in that white stuff, to poop outside. No matter what we did, she refused to go out.

We'll put her food outside, we said.

She refused to eat for three days, at which point, she raced out through the door, ate like a pig, and hurled herself back in, so she could poop on the carpet. She now weighed close to 60 pounds, and we weren't talking lady-like piles of poo. This was dump truck stuff.

We shedded her outside. Gave her a heat lamp to simulate Vietnam weather, where rumor has it her kind came from.

When I went outside to her shed to feed and water and oil her, I would whisper in her ear: "I grew up eating your cousins."

Then I would tell her how fat and plump she looked. She would smack her lips and grunt. Her beady-eyed look back at me said: "Don't fall down, or you're swine supper."

Nice pet?