Misanthropes like fieldtrips too. But beautiful paintings and concert piano will only upset the misanthrope. And the only exhibit at Science World of interest to the misanthrope is Body Worlds.* Maybe.
Good news! The misanthrope will feel immediately at home at the wildlife rehabilitation centre. Not only will the wildlife centre offer respite from the city’s overwhelming anthropocentrism, but also its ethos will appeal greatly to the misanthrope. Deep satisfaction will be derived from wildlife rehab’s guiding policy regarding the inversely proportional relationship between animal contact with humans and animal survival: to maximize the chance of animal survival, the misanthrope will be delighted to know, the animal must minimize encounters with human beings.
For this reason, the misanthrope will only have access to the portion of the rehab centre that is open to visitors, which includes those animals deemed “non-releasable” (beyond repair) and therefore confined to captivity until death. Off limits to the misanthrope will be the cages of animals being rehabilitated for eventual return to the wild. Many animals are brought to the centre injured or ill, and are nursed back to health. Other animals have become “habituated” to humans (as pets) and their anthropomorphisms need to be undone lest they be released and wander straight into the arms of another human, which is to say, according to rehab ethos, back into captivity or even to death.
Undoing “humanization” can take years and usually involves instilling in animals fear and dislike of humans. This is accomplished by deploying misanthropic technologies, like shooting fireworks near the animals, exposing them to electric fences, or spraying them with water if they come too close to a human, for example giving a volunteer caretaker a wedgie.
The misanthrope may also have the opportunity to conduct an educational tour of the centre, where s/he may encounter pleasing signs and exhibits confirming the misanthrope’s deep distrust and dislike of humankind.It is recommended that the misanthrope bring along a camera to capture the effect of the most gratifying of these signs: a mirror image of the misanthrope reflected beside a sign declaring who is responsible for the extinction of animals, or who is the most foolish and destructive species. The misanthrope will revel in such unrestrained declarations of humankind’s barbarism.
The misanthrope will leave the wildlife rehabilitation centre refreshed and rejuvenated, reassured of his/her disdain for the human species, and maybe enjoying an unfamiliar sensation of affinity with other beings, these solitary, captive creatures. For what good misanthrope would not believe Aristotle, who said that a misanthrope is not a human at all but must be a beast (or a god, but we won’t open that can of humans…).
*Body Worlds: another necro-economy for sure! Its creator, German “celebrity anatomist” (a rare achievement, I’m sure!) Gunther von Hagens, and exhibitors have been accused of being “body snatchers” who deprive the medical community of organs for donation with their “dead body porn“. Harsh. Sounds like the makings for another ARTEMIA post… Foreshadowing!