I have a pet hamster. His name is Ozzy. He is adorable but terrified of everything. However, over the course of his cohabitation with me, he’s become acclimated to the sounds of heavy metal, probably due to the fact that I play it for 16 hours a day. I’ve discovered that he actually has quite discerning taste, and reacts differently to the different things I play. So, in this column, I’m going to play him some of the latest metal singles, record his reaction, and then offer my scientific interpretation of what his behavior means vis-à-vis the song.
Song: Ghost BC – Year Zero
Reaction: The subject stood on top of the upside down food bowl on his ledge. Scaled the bars on the corner of his cage. Grabbed the roof, carefully. Pulled himself up, hooked his hind feet onto the roof. Climbed across, upside down, until he lost his grip and tumbled down to the bedding. Landed, shook his head, ran into his house.
Interpretation: The Dark Lord is calling! I must go to him! His voice draws me upwards, inspiring me to greater heights. This barred firmament shall not impede my progress! There must be a point of egress. I know there’s a reason His Infernal Majesty endowed me with this quadridexterous form. This can be done. One bar at a time… no – no no no! I am once more betrayed by this feeble form. My shame must not be witnessed by my master, especially not after he honored me with such glorious song.
Song: Beyond the Shore – Half Lived
Reaction: The subject rushed to the side of his house. Picked up a food pellet in his mouth. Ran over to his water bottle. Dropped the food pellet. Stood on his hind legs. Waited a moment. Gnawed at the base of the nozzle. Ran back into his house.
Interpretation: What in the name of Cthulhu’s tentacled maw is this insanity?! I must make it cease! Perhaps if I present an offering to the Great Water Idol. It will mean potential starvation, but I feel it to be a worthwhile sacrifice. There. Take this delicious offering. What? You ignore me?! Face my wrath, impudent statue! Arrgh, this accursed noise can no longer be tolerated. I shall hide until the agony has passed.
Song: Finntroll – Blodsvept
Reaction: The subject poked his head over the side of the ramp in his cage. Pulled himself onto it. Ran up to the ledge, squeezed inside his tissue box gazebo. Pushed against the side until the tissue box fell off the ledge. Poked his head out. Ran back into his house.
Interpretation: This is it, I knew it – the predators have arrived, they are hungry, and I have been caught defenseless. I shall not be taken so easily by such monstrosities. A barricade must be erected! Unfortunately, I find myself without the proper tools. Improvisation will have to do. I have not figured out what this strange structure is for, but it will serve my purpose. Whee! Oh crap, this did nothing, and now I find myself exposed in a flimsy, easy movable dwelling. Maybe this was their plan all along! Well, I’ll show them. They’ll never get me inside my house!