I would not say that the cereal in the box was given to me. What I would say is that, through a series of events, I came to have access to the cereal in the box.

We can argue over the preceding events all we want, but I prefer to stick to the facts that we can all agree on. Some of the allegations that have been made certainly go beyond what can be proved with solid evidence. Witnesses to the events in question are scarce. It was me, and the fly, and no one else until the unfortunate and bitter end of the proceedings. So let's not make presumptions. Let's stick to what is indisputable.

There is a great deal of cereal on the floor. That is true. No one can contest the fact that approximately 30% of the area of the linoleum kitchen floor of the home in which I live is currently covered by individual pieces of cereal which have spilled out of the boxes in which they were kept. The boxes in question—Cookie Crisp, Lucky Charms, and Apple Jacks—are also on the floor. The cardboard portions of the boxes appear to have been torn open roughly, along with the plastic bagging inside, to get at their sweet, crunchy treasure. O me Lucky Charms! Crunch crunch crunch on you! Yes I do!

We cannot say for sure who is responsible for this crunchy crime scene.

It would be extremely easy to blame this chaotic tableau on the lone individual who was in the house during the hours when the crime occurred. It is very tempting to abandon critical thinking and simply assume that—if there is an empty house with only a dog in it, and you leave that house, and everything is clean and in its place, and then you return a few hours later and the kitchen floor is strewn with a hurricane of cereal, and all of the cereal boxes have been opened not by the easy-open flaps on top but instead by being torn and chewed from the side, and there are tooth marks on the boxes, and you've seen the dog on multiple occasions push his nose into the crack in the cabinet door and work that door open because he smells the marshmallowy Lucky Charms within, and the dog of the house is hiding in the corner of the living room upon your return, and in the hairy area of the dog's snout is a good quantity of bluish-white powder consistent with smashed Lucky Charms marshmallows—then the dog of the house is the perpetrator of the crime. Yes, it is quite easy to make this assumption. But where is the proof? I ask you? Is this America? A Bill of Rights? Rule of law—have you heard? What is it? Where is the video, officer? Where is the DNA sampling tunes? Where is the food expert to report his findings? Where is the tripwire? Where is the secret code? Where is the weaponry and the criminal evidentiary detritus? Where, pray tell, is the witness? The only witness is the fly. And I don't see no fly around here.

Cause I ATE HIM UP WITH THE APPLE JACKS. Legal Zoom, dot com, infomercial, save me! Save me, Legal Zoom Zoom Zoom!

I am the watchman of this house.

[Image by Jim Cooke]