Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Potted Pachyderms

No, this isn't a post about local Republicans after a Rudy Giuliani visit. It's a feel good piece about Paris Hilton finding her way. It pleases me to see the young lady, known for her problems with alcohol, is staying true to her word to find a good cause to front. Alcohol related seems appropriate.

But drunken elephants? Wow! It seems there is an epidemic of binge drinking elephants in northern India. Says Ms. Hilton, "The elephants get drunk all the time. It is becoming really dangerous. We need to stop making alcohol available to them." Amen!

So here's the scoop. A herd of 20 or so elephants went on a rampage while looking for food. They came across a stash of rice beer (Saki), helped themselves then proceeded to take out an electric pole bringing down high tension wires and electrocuting four of them.

That had to be some stash of booze! I had do do a little digging but I found what I needed on the Softpedia website. A study was done at one time and the findings showed that an Asian elephant would have to consume about two liters of pure ethanol to get tipsy. Sake is about 20% alcohol, upping the quantity to 10 liters per elephant. The article says that is quite a lot for an elephant and that the elephant would have to ingest the entire quantity in literally one gulp or it would be metabolized before any effects became visible.

Okay. Maybe there was enough Sake fermenting in the village vats for 20 elephants to chug-a-lug in unison, get fried (couldn't resist) and run roughshod over the villagers.

That would lead me to think the villagers might just need the help more than the elephants. But what the heck. Alcohol related or animal welfare causes are both worthy. It 's just difficult to sort it out when one's fuzzy from too much Sake. At least they've got Paris!

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