I would like to paint a picture for you on this Memorial Day weekend. It is of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg chopping off a live chicken's head with a large knife.
No, the chicken is not called MySpace. Nor has anyone ever referred to it as "Privacy."
However, it seems that the Valley's own Scotty McCreery has decided to start killing his own fowl before he eats it. Actually, according to Fortune, he isn't just stopping at fowl. He's into a little pig slaughter too.
You think that I might be offering a little callous besmirchment? Truly, I am no headless chicken in these matters. For Zuckerberg himself wrote an e-mail to Fortune, in which he explained that before he eats any animal, he makes sure it is one whose life he has personally ended.
It's a little, he wrote, like learning Chinese (that was his personal challenge for last year).
This year, he explained, "my personal challenge is around being thankful for the food I have to eat. I think many people forget that a living being has to die for you to eat meat, so my goal revolves around not letting myself forget that and being thankful for what I have."
I know there might be some who will have a little difficulty connecting every single dot between gratitude and pig slaughter.
However, Zuckerberg merely stated: "This year I've basically become a vegetarian, since the only meat I'm eating is from animals I've killed myself."
So, is the idea that it is so hard to get oneself to kill a pig that this is a fine way to reduce one's meat intake? Or is the thought that one simply shouldn't eat meat that came from something one didn't, in some way, friend first?
It's hard to judge from Zuckerberg's e-mail. For he revealed the roots of his new behavior this way: "A bunch of people told me that even though they loved eating pork, they really didn't want to think about the fact that the pig used to be alive. That just seemed irresponsible to me. I don't have an issue with anything people choose to eat, but I do think they should take responsibility and be thankful for what they eat rather than trying to ignore where it came from."
He offered to Fortune that his first victim of pleasure was a lobster. He boiled it alive. How did it feel to eat a personally boiled lobster?
"The most interesting thing was how special it felt to eat it after having not eaten any seafood or meat in a while," he told Fortune. But did it feel special because his relationship with the lobster was personal--even if a little lopsided? Was he tempted to tag it on his Facebook account before swallowing it?
Zuckerberg told Fortune that his next step will be to go hunting. And in case you're wondering just how far his animal-elimination had gone so far, Mashable revealed that on his private Facebook page, Zuckerberg had posted: "I just killed a pig and a goat."
The goat was surely a tough one. I've always found them remarkably friendly little things, even if they spawned the goatee.
Personally, I have a lot of sympathy with Zuckerberg's essential logic about meat-eating--well, up to the point at which he expresses his desire only to eat meat that he has killed. Wouldn't just watching some poor lobster being boiled or some pig being poked in the eye be enough?
And shouldn't he accord the same alleged respect for lettuce, tomatoes, and broccoli? Those things are living too, aren't they? So shouldn't he eat only greens that he has personally chopped off or torn asunder at the roots?
I know there will be some amateur (and even professional) psychologists who will feel that the Facebook CEO's innately competitive nature will be stirred by his animacidal exploits.
Many (including some who live on farms and have four legs) will, I am sure, be dying to see whether the more he kills animals, the more he partakes of their mortal flesh.
Those who enjoy crime novels and Jeffrey Dahmer biographies tell me that people who enjoy a little killing tend to get something of a taste for it.