Brendan McCarthy + Phil O’Shea

THE CRIMINAL STAG

THE CRIMINAL STAG

By Phil O’Shea

There was once a stag who wanted to commit a crime. But knowing that each stag’s antlers are unique to him, much like human fingerprints, he worried that he might be identified, and caught by the police. So, thinking logically he tried to construct some gloves for his antlers. The stag bought some wool and some knitting needles from a local frog (who was a moderately successful and reasonably priced haberdasher).
He knitted and knitted and knitted, all through the night. When morning came, he realised he had been slightly overzealous, and had essentially knitted himself a balaclava. ‘All the better’ he thought ‘wearing this balaclava I shall be even less conspicuous as it will shroud me as the night shrouds all the objects that hang around on the earth , like men and statues, and even statues of men. What a fool I was to hide only my antlers! Why not hide my whole head and be done with it?’ So the crime was committed. Seventeen valuable urns were seized as well as a statue of a sculptor carving another statue, which passers-by often assumed was a self portrait, but which was in fact simply a sculpture of a second sculptor at work (the second sculptor being an acquaintance of the first). The next morning the police arrived at the stag’s home, and he was imprisoned. ‘But how did you know it was me?’ bellowed the stag ‘my head was shrouded in a woollen prison, by which I mean my balaclava’. ‘Aha’ said the policeman, ‘but how many stags are there who have recently purchased wool from the haberdasher, and also you have a very distinctive birthmark on your rear end.’