Animal Dilemmas – Fruit Fly Cockroach
The Cockroach crawled tireless through fields, forest, it crossed roads railways, it survived everything. It ate anything that was wet and smelly. It passed through many places and times suitable for a habitat. It encountered other types of wild roaches a plethora of insects, some of which it ate. The Cockroach was detached and determined, moving forward was its only prerogative.
It was traveling without a compass. In its mind it thought of its journey as a straight line. In fact its adventures were closer to circular. Its limited perspective made it a poor judge of landscape and marks. It could only notice the biggest general changes.
Like when green plants and rotten leaves became more frequently intersected by roads and railways. And soon grass trees gave way to brick and concrete. The Cockroach had reached the city. It crawled through sewers for what it felt like a lifetime. It traveled vertically up into buildings.
There was more food in the city. The giants that live there wasted most edibles and piled them in corners or sent them down shafts. It seemed as if food was not much of their concern.
The Cockroach was finally content. It had reached an apartment on the fourth floor with plenty of food laying around. The food was more diverse, fresher and more delicious than the pig farm, which did not matter to the Cockroach. All it mattered to it was its abundance.
The Cockroach was much bigger and experience that the small spoiled city roaches. It took ever the best wet, dark cavity in the walls of the kitchen. It had its own kingdom now. It wasn’t picky about food but its size and demeanor scared the rest so it had the first pick when the lights went off and scavenging began.
The kitchen counter was covered with crumbs, stains, drops, dirty plates and half eaten fruits. It was illuminated only by a tiny bulb inside a bell in the hand of a plastic figure of a dwarf. As if the dwarf was ringing the bell of light calling all creatures to supper. Roaches disliked light so they stayed away from the dwarf.
The light attracted most other insects. In this case the dwarf attracted fruit flies. They liked the light, sticky food and were nor afraid of the Cockroach. They were always there first. In fact it seemed they never left the kitchen counter. Their lust for food and wine was stronger than their fear of anything. They only flew for their lives when a giant swept the air with a hand.
There was plenty of food for all – giants, roaches and flies. But the Cockroach disliked the flies’ stubbornness and nearly condescending indifference to its presence.
On several occasions it ran up sharply to a group of feeding flies, sucking on a half spoon of cheesecake or beans, without any success. In some cases one or two flies would lift off only to land back on. The flies did not respect the Cockroach and were getting it more and more aggravated.
The Cockroach thought it was simply demanding the respect it deserved. It had struggled, it had experienced all the miseries of life. The majority of it, it had searched for this promised land. It had conquered it and that was worthy of respect.
However, it couldn’t possibly explain that to the flies. They spoke different languages and had altogether different preinstalled values. They only found common ground in food.
There was nights when the Cockroach was running like crazy from morsel to morsel chasing flies to educate them about its merits. The flies were indifferent as always. To them the Cockroaches was like a mad and greedy insect fending to seize the common counter. Doomed to fail.
One elderly fly pretended it could distinguish one or two words of what was being related by the Cockroach. It flew in several circles around it showing off as fearless leader. They were inside a plate with some remains and a fork across it. The fly was circling the plate dangerously low and the Cockroach was chasing it on the edge of it leaping with spread wings over the fork.
The rest of the flies grouped in a cloud in the middle of the plate and turned around with the chase.
Suddenly the light went on, a giant walked in, took a stirring spoon and smashed on the plate several times until it got the Cockroach. The flies dispersed in all directions and lights went off.
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