Finnish pigs!
February 25, 2003 7:38 PM   Subscribe

The life of a pig, from conception to Christmas ham. A frank and charming slide show of the life of pig Onni, backed by horns, narrated in melodius Finnish, and subtitled in English. Be warned: it uses Flash, and ends in death.
posted by Mo Nickels (30 comments total)
Strange and good. Let the animal apologist vs arrogant meateater arguments commence! Here, I'll start... "Killing animals is unethical!" "Mmm, red meat is good and juicy!"
posted by waxpancake at 7:52 PM on February 25, 2003

It doesn't cover the couple of minutes ago where Omni married Hellman's Mayonaisse and had their honeymoon in my stomach. I'll send them pictures.
posted by Stan Chin at 8:10 PM on February 25, 2003

I want to see the story of how sweet, innocent little babies are spat out of the womb and end up walking the streets.
posted by PigAlien at 8:11 PM on February 25, 2003

Finnish is cool. Someday, I'll learn finnish, marry a beautiful blonde woman and live in a cabin in the woods, drinking vodka in the sauna.
On second thought, scratch the "learn finnish" part.
posted by spazzm at 8:12 PM on February 25, 2003

Nice link. I could smell it from here.
posted by hama7 at 8:28 PM on February 25, 2003

I spent a few months in Finland. A few beautiful months.

People eat pigs. (Oh, and vice versa, occasionally, but I don't want to think about that.)

End of story, for me, anyway.
posted by kozad at 8:28 PM on February 25, 2003

I used to raise pigs, and I've slaughtered them with my own hands. Yes, that's what we call it...slaughtering. Its not pretty, and its not pleasant, and I've shed a tear more than once. And I've eaten the result. That's the life of a predatory omnivore. Lets not polarize this thing for some kinda worthless coup.

And yeah, Finnish is kinda a cool language. (This link isn't dialup friendly...just sayin')
posted by Wulfgar! at 8:35 PM on February 25, 2003

Regardless, an excellent example of how Flash can really work. My favorite part was the dynamic timeline at the top. And it's even got subtitles! Jakob Nielsen would approve!

(wait--is he Finnish?)
posted by TheManWhoKnowsMostThings at 8:52 PM on February 25, 2003

Oops. forgot one thing.

Stan Chin, it's spelled mayonnaise.

posted by TheManWhoKnowsMostThings at 8:55 PM on February 25, 2003

I'd like to mention to the faint of heart, there is no graphic slaughter in the flash presentation.

I personally don't eat meat for a variety of reasons, the main reason being that I grew up on a farm in Poland and I lost the stomach for the fear and the pain of slaughter. The pigs in this case, however, do not die a painful and scary death. The pigs are led to a room where, I believe carbon monoxide renders them unconscious for the final kill. This reminds me of the story of Temple Grandin, perhaps the world's foremost expert on livestock handling, welfare, and facility design. If anybody is interested, Dr. Grandin's interview on NPR was really fascinating.

It's nice to know where your food comes from, but suddenly I want to go and get a pet pig.
posted by crazy finger at 9:08 PM on February 25, 2003

That was oddly moving, and it will be a while before I make pork chops again.
posted by padraigin at 9:19 PM on February 25, 2003

Mo Nickels, you beat me to this post ;-)
I just recently rediscovered this fabulous story of Onni - he is such a winsome little piggy! Alas, the ending is quite the heartbreaker. This is a great use of flash. Thanks for posting!
posted by madamjujujive at 9:35 PM on February 25, 2003

hey that was cool, thanks! but sad :( unlike wilbur or babe, who were cool and happy :)
posted by kliuless at 10:04 PM on February 25, 2003

crazy finger - I had a dream in which Temple Grandin married Adolf Eichmann - and they found together painless, efficient, and humanitarian methods to euthanize all creatures in God's good universe.

I haven't killed pigs, though I did help kill a sheep once - by hauling it up in the air by it's trussed hind legs (with a VW bug which ran on 3 cylinders, too). I drank some of that sheep's blood. I didn't like it. This disgust of mine was selfish, for waste is bad.
posted by troutfishing at 10:36 PM on February 25, 2003

I think the slaughter should have been shown, or at least the method of death explained. The story is meant to illustrate how the Christmas hams end up on your plate - we missed a few crucial steps. I can get the worst examples from PETA, but nothing like this kind of straightforward, no agenda reporting.

If we can see insemination, manual birthing, stillborns, and ear notching, why not the last nick?
posted by letitrain at 10:36 PM on February 25, 2003

humans goddam suck.
posted by kv at 11:29 PM on February 25, 2003

wow, wonderful wonderful link.
long, but well worth watching -- i learned a lot about pig farming.

thank you.
posted by fishfucker at 11:50 PM on February 25, 2003

Excellent. Everyone should have a good education as to how their meat gets on their plate. But where's the finishing touch?

Fortunately, as a child, I experienced enough farms and butchers that it really isn't a big deal to see that. If you can't come to terms with how the food gets on your plate, well, hey, please don't watch any nature videos! :-)

However, that being said, farmers tell me they castrate pigs to prevent them from killing each other. I've never had one explain that the main reason is so the meat doesn't taste bad.
posted by shepd at 12:49 AM on February 26, 2003

and ends in death.

Life usually does.
posted by salmacis at 1:02 AM on February 26, 2003

I saw something very similar to this some time ago, except it was static pictures, and somewhere in the Balkans, as seen through the eyes of visitor, I think.

Damn me if I can remember where. It was also very well done, though.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 2:01 AM on February 26, 2003

Well, you don't see the death, but if you click on the last tab at the end of the slide show, you will see carcasses hanging in a slaughterhouse.
posted by Mo Nickels at 5:00 AM on February 26, 2003

Whoa, whoa, whoa! Slow down Jimmy. You just asked a mouthful. It all starts here, in the high density feed lot. Then, when the pigs are just right... Yum, It's time for them to graduate from "Porcus" University.

Sorry, couldn't resist. Good link though. I ran across it a few months ago and thought it was really well done. Good use of Flash.
posted by Caffine_Fiend at 5:07 AM on February 26, 2003

ahem. that last tab is not something to wakeup to, that's for damn sure.
posted by mrplab at 5:17 AM on February 26, 2003

Homer: Wait a minute wait a minute wait a minute. Lisa honey, are you
saying you're *never* going to eat any animal again? What about
Lisa: No.
Homer: Ham?
Lisa: No.
Homer: Pork chops?
Lisa: Dad! Those all come from the same animal!
Homer: [Chuckles] Yeah, right Lisa. A wonderful, magical animal.
-- Of species porcine, "Lisa the Vegetarian"

Wonderful, magical animal, indeed. The movie cleared up a few questions I'd had since I read Where Does Bacon Come From?
posted by Frank Grimes at 5:50 AM on February 26, 2003

Don't worry, folks - through the miracle of modern science we may soon be able to eat "vat-grown meat": hunks of meat grown in nutrient solution with no animal attached!

Presto! - No brain or nervous system involved, no moral dilemna! Unfortunately though, the first generation of vat-grown meat requires a nutrient solution made from the blood of baby cows.
posted by troutfishing at 6:03 AM on February 26, 2003

Unfortunately though, the first generation of vat-grown meat requires a nutrient solution made from the blood of baby cows.

Marinated in veal stock? No problem, sounds delicious.
posted by Slithy_Tove at 6:13 AM on February 26, 2003

I still chuckle at the tagline meme:
MetaFilter: it uses Flash, and ends in death.
posted by Vidiot at 6:18 AM on February 26, 2003

Speaking of meat, anyone want to help me with my home gene-mod program, crossing salmon with emus? I think pigs are far too smart to eat.

I hope to create the "salmu" - a really dumb (but lean and tasty) red-meat swamp dwelling creature which thrives on industrial effluents and is naturally high in omega 3 and 6 fatty acids.
posted by troutfishing at 7:26 AM on February 26, 2003

Or cross a salmon with an ostrich, then the offspring with a pig. Ham salmich.
posted by TimeFactor at 8:11 AM on February 26, 2003

For another charming presentation on the life of a pig bred for slaughter, try Click on "Cyber Farm Tour" for a warm and fuzzy gloss on factory farming. My favorite part: when the cartoon pigs march thru a mysterious black doorway at the end. Of course there's no mention of what actually happens to them...
posted by Artifice_Eternity at 8:43 AM on February 26, 2003

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