And the barman enquired, “Why the long face?” The horse eyed the barman up stonily; “You know, you always use that same terrible joke. I mean really, every time a horse walks into a bar there’s always a barman asking about the long face. What gives, seriously?”

“Take a seat and I’ll explain.” The barman gestured to his normal stool upon which the horse took a pew. “The usual is it?” “Aye, go on. And some crisps.”

“OK, now you might find this hard to believe,” began the barman as the horse slurped at the head on his beer. “But, everything we say and do is written down. We don’t really exist.”

The barman stood back and folded his arms looking expectantly at the horse. The horse put the pint down on the bar with a hoof. “Er… OK, is that it?” He asked the barman whilst wiping the froth from his upper lip. “What do you mean ‘is that it?’ I just explained the meaning of life and bad jokes and that’s all you have to say?”

“Nah, it’s just that it sounds like utter balls. You really mean to tell me that we’re just a figment of some awful writer’s imagination? That everything we do is scripted and we have no say in it at all?”

“That’s exactly right my equine companion.”

“Gahahaha no way, I’m not having that. Have you been at your own stock or something?”

The barman withdrew offended. “Absolutely not! Seriously, I’m telling you the truth. Try and do something.”

The horse extended his left front leg out before him. He wiggled his hoof a bit. “You mean like that? I just put my arm out and wiggled my hoof around a bit. No-one is writing that, I just did it you daft sod. Honestly, some of the shite you come out with sometimes.”

The horse chuckled indulgently and continued to drink his beer. Within the beer, two molecules were having a similar conversation:

“No fuck off, I’m not having it. We’re not part of a story dropped in conveniently. Absolutely not.” The other molecule crossed his molecule arms over his ‘All Horses Are Twats’ T-shirt. “I’m telling you, it’s the truth. Why would I be wearing this T-shirt otherwise? Molecules don’t even wear T-shirts; think about it.”

Unfortunately, the conversation and conclusion were cut short as the horse finished his pint. “So I have no free will whatsoever?” The barman chuckled; “It’s not just that my friend, you don’t exist at all. Basically you’re just pixels on a screen being viewed by some bored person who’s stumbled on this conversation and are probably wishing they hadn’t. You see the picture that illustrates this? It’s not even a horse, it’s a donkey.”

The horse looked perplexed; he sat with his chin resting on a hoof, trying to understand the complexity of life, reality and existence. The ethereal nature of the subconscious and the enormity of consciousness.

“Nah. You’re talking balls.” He snorted. “Well, I’d better be getting home to my oranges and tightrope walking. Night chuck.” With that he waved and departed the bar juggling flaming swords into the purple moonlight.

Moral of the story: Horses have a poor grasp of metaphysics.


A horse walks into a bar…