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Remember Florence Jean Castleberry – perhaps better known as Flo – from the series “Mel’s Diner”? She had many sayings she was fond of. One of the most popular was “when donkeys fly!” Clearly, she used this saying because she believed donkeys never would fly.

Flo better find a new phrase. Because at least one donkey in Russia can now say he’s been flying. Much to his own dismay, I assure you.

Try this lede sentence from NY Daily News:

Some businessmen in Russia are looking like real jackasses.

Well that’s an understatement. OK – here’s the story. These businessmen in question were supposedly looking for an advertising stunt. So they figured, “Hey! Lets strap a para-sail to a donkey, plunge him into the air, and see what happens when donkeys fly!”

(Yeah… me too. I was just sitting around the other day, thinking a para-sailing donkey sure would increase my business. Not.)

Here’s more from the NY Daily News:

The parachuting donkey screamed in terror as it circled the skies over the beaches on the Sea of Azov in southern Russia.

This is so not funny. Yet, after watching the video, all I can envision is Donkey from the movie “Shrek”. In my mind, this poor creature has taken on the voice of Eddie Murphy.

“Shrek! Shrek! Get me down, Shrek. Help me, Shrek. I’m gonna die, Shrek! I’m gonna die up here, Shrek, I’m gonna die!”

I know – it’s not funny. Really it isn’t. But I can’t get Eddie Murphy’s voice out of my head. And maybe the reason I have to make light of it, is to overcome the total exasperation that I felt on reading the reaction from bystanders on the beach, who, instead of calling police, reached for their cameras and contacted the media.

The donkey flew so high at times that onlookers thought the animal was a dog. Geez. It wasn’t until after about 30 minutes that the donkey landed in what was described to be an “atrocious manner… dragged several meters along the water” before ultimately being pulled out alive. As for the businessmen behind the stunt, they may (or may not) face animal cruelty charges. Nevertheless, I think this statement to AFP from regional police spokeswoman Laris Tuchkova sums things up nicely:

“The donkey screamed and children cried. No one had the brains to call police.”

And now we know what happens when donkeys fly…

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