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When pigs fly? Not yet, but I'm hopeful

By Gloria Diaz

Check out Gloria's Blog — Edge of Gloria!

Fort Wayne Reader

2016-09-02


If you have a diverse group of friends on Facebook, you get to find out about a lot of things. Graffiti, computers, weird fads, the daily drama of peopleís lives, political views, wacky groups/movements and some good things (occasionally).

Then, thereís the guy who makes drones out of dead animals. I canít remember who posted the link to the video, but I checked it out. And I also checked out his website (more on that later).

I havenít seen any drones close up, but Iíve seen people play around with them. The only reason Iíd want one is the voyeuristic possibilities. What does the unused above-ground pool in the neighborís look like? What would I see if I peeked in the 30th floor windows of One Summit Square, or whatever itís called now? How bad is the traffic accident thatís forcing me to cook bumper-to-bumper on a 90-degree day in my non-air-conditioned (yes, they do exist) car? Plus, I could get some really cool flying-over-the-city shots to make my no-budget YouTube videos look budgeted.

Drones seem kind of creepy anyway, but leave it to some enterprising dude to combine taxidermy and technology. Bart Jansen, a Dutch inventor, turned his cat Orville into a drone after the feline had been hit by a car. The invention is just as creepy as it sounds. The cat is spread-eagled on a frame. Orvilleís facial expression is of surprised horror. Engineer Arlen Beltman helped Jansen out with the project. Now, Jansen, whose day job was working with solar panels, has his own business (Copter Company) and the thrillingly-named website, bartjansen.tv. I was disappointed to find out he doesnít have any flying pigs in progress (maybe itís a cultural thing).

But I think Jansen is an artist at heart, or at least has an artistís viewpoint, which is to say, creative, disturbing, thought-provoking, horrifying, twisted, hilarious and innovative. Itís what some people call insane. Why do I say that? Because a view of his projects include a Ku-Klux-Klan cuckoo clock (complete with African-American men hanging on the chains) A blue replica of Big Bird as roadkill, complete with intestines leaking out, an oil painting (The Lovers) of Mary Magdalene carrying Jesus on a beach, a short film, Pussy Destructor, where a cat (named Abatutu) walks into a washing machine, goes for several spins, then emerges unscathed (a disclaimer on the website claims no washing machines were harmed in the making of the film), and a Rabbit Stand made out of wood, and a ceramic carrot. If your rabbit tends to fall over, just slide Thumper onto the carrot, and your furry friend will be standing tall. The ďcompanyĒ responsible for this gadget? Lepus Rectus, LTD.

Itís certainly not what I expected. But if the drone thing was meant as a marking tool for Jansenís other collaborations, it certainly got attention. Animal drones are attention-getting, but it wasnít as if they were actually killing animals and turning them into magnificent, furry, feathered, flying machines. Copter Company is even environmentally friendly, turning roadkill into, well, floating roadkill.

Maybe I need to send him an email. If he made a drone out of Grumpy Cat, Iíd have to buy it. I would use it to terrorize downtown Fort Wayne, making Grumpy Cat float past windows of lawyers, doctors, and other office dwellers. Iíd have to have a camera on it, recording peopleís reactions.

Either that, or a Doge drone. Anything to make me laugh.

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