HAPPY FEET PENGUIN ALERT!!!
New Zealand is home of Frodo, Peter Jackson and their Hobbit mates. We’re also world leaders in dairy and tourism and nuclear weapons production. (Kidding about that last one.)
And we are also a country where normally sensible, laid back people get all breathless when basically anything that’s living washes up on the beach. You think we are kidding?
Consider “Happy Feet”, the Antarctic Emperor Penguin who turned up on a beach semi-near Wellington earlier this week.
NZ media have been on it 24/7. Breathlessly!
“X-rays have revealed that the young emperor penguin that travelled more than 3000km from its Antarctic home to a Kapiti Coast beach faces an uphill struggle to survive. The penguin – nicknamed Happy Feet – was packed in a chilled box and taken from Peka Peka beach to Wellington Zoo, an hour south. Veterinary staff put the penguin under a general anesthetic to take x-rays and pump sand from its stomach.”
The “sandectomy” was only partially successful. The entire nation was breathless. And distraught.
So a crack 25-person team of penguin-ologists was been called from all corners of New Zealand, plus two Russian specialists from the space station, for a second “sandectomy”.
A breathless zoo spokeswoman said up to 100 breathless kiwis gathered to watch the procedure. “They were fascinated, they were lining up half an hour before it started to make sure they got good seats,” said the spokeswoman, between gasps. Because. I mean. This is a penguin.
Tomorrow a crack team of at least 50 medical specialists will breathlessly await the results of the latest x-rays to see if there’s still sand in the penguin’s stomach. If so, “we’ll probably have to knock him out again tomorrow, and stomach flush him again.”
This tragic, heart-wrenching, debilitating news stunned an already breathless nation.
The Mayo clinic is on standby. And United Nations Development Programme Administrator Helen Clark, a former NZ Prime Minister, has convinced Ban Ki-Moon to put “100% of the UN’s formidable resources at the Happy Feet. Yes, a few thousand children may starve to death in some third world country, but this is an Emperor Penguin we’re talking about. Who has eaten New Zealand sand. And made. Me. All. Breathless.”
NZ’s present Prime Minister, John Key, had been in earthquake devastated Christchurch to help with the $20-billion rebuilding effort. Upon hearing of Happy Feet’s second operation, Key immediately flew to Wellington using an experimental one-man jetpack.
“I know that my staff said this could be risky, but no planes were available. If Happy Feet went under without me being there to hold his little flipper… Well. I. Would. Be. Too. Breath. Less. To. For. Give. My. S.E.L.F. Gasp.”
Key ordered an entire floor of Wellington Hospital evacuated to ensure perfect care for Happy Feet, requiring some 700 elderly cancer patients to be moved to a nearby snowcave. A group spokesman said, “If this helps Happy Feet, even a tiny bit, well, that will be sufficient for us all. We are New Zealanders. We stand by our friends from the sea. And trust me. We would all be breathless, if they would turn off these respirators.”
Although New Zealand’s 4 million people seem to be coping with this catastrophic solo penguin grounding, there was growing concern about reports that a starfish could some day beach in New Zealand.
Said PM John Key, with swollen red eyes,: “We’ve managed to handle the Christchurch earthquake, and Happy Feet. But even kiwi battlers can only take so much tragedy in one lifetime.”
URGENT UPDATE 1: Happy Feet to be airlifted to Antarctic, unless he croaks.
URGENT UPDATE 2: Wellington specialist to prove specialist care for Happy Feet the sand-eating penguin. (About bloody time!)
URGENT UPDATE 2.1: TV3 News Reports – Happy Feet undergoes third operation. ‘Entire nation breathless and on the edge’. Army reserves called up.
URGENT UPDATE 3.0: Happy Feet survives third surgery and DNA sex test. Air Force on Defcon 9.
URGENT UPDATE 4.0: Happy Feet to be released into ocean, NOT Charlie Sheen’s open arms, due to United Nation guidelines on safe sex. Coast Guard and flotilla of 10,000 NZ ships armed with Hobbits to be on hand.
URGENT UPDATE 5.0: Charlie Sheen is not at all embarrassed that DNA tests show that HappyFeet is a boy penguin and that Charlie is the father. Whoa. ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________
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