The Crass Menagerie

Tennessee Williams AND Joe Conrad go deeper into Parrot and Monkey Jungle than was, perhaps, wise

Reaching the point where the canal feeds into Florida's river of grass, John guns the engine and we're airborne, skipping over the water at 40 miles per hour. Without warning he throws the boat into a tailspin, covering the twenty or so passengers with brackish mist. Like a kid on a six-pack-fueled joyride, John repeats this maneuver over and over again, until the boat once again reaches the narrow confines of the canal.

Feeding time: A voice over the loudspeaker directs the crowd to the large breeding pond in the middle of the farm, where Kristy appears. Dressed in camouflage combat pants, a matching bandanna, and a black Alligator Farm T-shirt with the inscription "Bite Me!" on it, Kristy twice a day flips the gators the bird. Literally. Reaching into a bucket, she pulls out one dead, skinned chicken after another, tossing them to the herd of 2000 or so gators around the pond. The animals dispose of the birds with cold efficiency, snapping their paltry poultry bones with a quick click of their jaws, then swallowing them whole.

The crowd gasps and, perhaps, secretly wonders how many gators it would take to eat a six-foot-tall mouse.

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