We all know that Trolls are friendly, cuddly creatures who bring happiness and good luck. Not so the Troglodyte and its many variants, of which the most dangerous and noisome is the Troglodyte Politicus.
Troglodyte Politicus is an unusually tough creature and while in other species this might attract a degree of grudging admiration, the fact of the matter is, it is just too stupid to know when to die. So it is found throughout the world, even in the most inhospitable climates and is very difficult to get rid of. Fortunately, its stupidity means that although it surfaces from time to time it is just too stupid to flourish and for the most part it goes away again, unlamented.
Identifying Troglodyte Politicus is straightforward as it has distinctive traits. In the UK, it is known as the Grifinik; the Grifinik has a particularly pungent odour, a distinctive cry and an unusual appearance, all of which mean it is ill suited to concealment. The odour is that of the rotting corpse, described by Hobbes as "the festering body-politic malodourous in death".
Although facially the Grifinik resembles a modern human being - and it is bipedal, has rudimentary speech and can learn simple tricks - it is unique among primates in having 2 brains. These are, not surprisingly, weak; neither has the capacity to form a coherent sentence so although the Grifinik can parrot the sayings of others it cannot, for example, enter into rational conversation or debate. For this reason, it finds it hard to make friends and this, in turn, leads to its low birth rate, one of nature's more fortunate quirks.
Like other lower animals it has a distinctive cry, which it utters in times of stress - few, as it is too stupid to know real fear - or exhultation. In the UK, the Grifinik's cry is a drawn out "eeee-nok, eeeeee-nok".
Sightings of Grifiniks have increased recently, this probably attributable to the fact that, stupid as it is, the creature can sense when people aren't looking; it is unlikely it understands why this happens, so the Grifinik is nothing more than a lurking opportunist - a little like a hyena albeit considerably less cuddly and infinitely more smelly. One is believed to have surfaced in Yorkshire one day, Manchester the next, then London a few days later - where it was pelted with eggs. This, itself, is a curious affair; ancient Pictish and Saxon legends both have tales of villagers throwing rotten farm produce at unnamed bogeymen to drive them away and the spontaneous and admirable response of Londoners to the unbidden appearance of a Grifinik suggests some ancient folk memory laying dormant in the British psyche.
So, does the Grifink pose any threat to us ? Not if we're watchful; like any form of pest, it can easily be controlled by vigilance and cleanliness. As with rats and cockroaches, it thrives in squalor and is only likely to appear if things get especially bad; like rats and cockroaches if conditions aren't improved rapidly, it becomes extremely difficult to remove.
The British Troglodyte Politicus, with its 2 brains and equally independent eyes will cause a mild panic amongst us all but will go away when we remember the watchwords "Cleanliness, Honesty, Decency". It is when we are negligent of these that Grifinik appears.
Wash your hands regularly. Keep them out of other peoples' pies.
We should not be cruel to Grifinik; however unpleasant it is it is largely harmless and in better times is amusing; a willing dancing bear, a clumsy if unendearing mimic. By all means throw eggs at it; it loves the attention but will rapidly tire and crawl under a stone somewhere. Left to its own devices it is as likely simply to die of forgetfulness as it is to get up again. This is its natural life, not a happy one by our values, but ideal for the Grifinik.
© Sir Picanuper Troll