On one hand, the Nashville Zoo were looking for an Elephant Keeper - it would involve me being responsible for "all aspects of the daily husbandry and management of 0.3 African elephants". This, I have to admit, put me off a little. I hardly think it's fair to offer the job of Elephant Keeper when you only have 0.3 of an elephant to care for. I began to idly wonder whether visitors to the Zoo just see a head and trunk sticking out from a hole in the wall and assume that there is a full elephant just out of sight...
And so, instead, I decided to apply for the position of part-time Antelope Keeper with the Oregon Wildlife Foundation. I was particularly attracted to this position by the prospect of only keeping the antelopes part of the time and have enclosed my application letter in full below:
I am applying for the position of Part-time Antelope Keeper, as advertised on the American Zoo and Aquarium Association website.
I am hard working, compassionate and enthusiastic and would dearly love the opportunity to keep antelopes on a part-time basis. An ideal solution for me would be to keep them on weekends as I would have much more spare-time to entertain them.
My only query is with regards to the exact number of antelopes I would be required to keep? In the advert you mention 100 animals – I’m not sure I have enough room for this many and would ideally look to keep no more than nine at any one time (but would be happy to cycle individuals to ensure a fair system).
I have enclosed my CV for your consideration and look forward to hearing from you in the near future.
Oliver.I calculated that nine is probably the maximum I can deal with as I think, at a push, I could squeeze two into the spare bedroom, one in the kitchen, three in the living/dining room and perhaps three more (small) antelopes in the garage.
I noted the job advert has been open since December 2005 so it is likely that, after this length of time searching for a suitable keeper, my proposition will prove very attractive to them...