by John Seed
It was his vocation – to dress up in a bunny costume and hop into shot when news channels were making live broadcasts.
He would hide close by until the anchor cut to the outside broadcast and then hold his hands up, in the way that real rabbits never really do and make slow two-legged jumps behind the correspondent. He would travel the country to bounce gently behind reports on strikes, court proceedings and sporting events.
He never waved or shouted a swear word or tried to interact with the reporter. Often he would make his way forward and exit the frame diagonally without acknowledging the presence of the camera. Occasionally he would stop beside the nonplussed correspondent, produce a carrot and nibble on it whilst the cameraman desperately tried to zoom him out of frame. He always bought organic as they came with the green foliage still attached.
Once, he managed to get into a catering van servicing Downing Street and hopped past both the BBC and Sky during the six o’clock news before being arrested by armed police. For that he was written about in the columns of the Sunday papers, the spliced together clips making it to most watched spot on YouTube for the week. All charges were eventually dropped.
It got to a point where he didn’t even have to actually appear on screen. He could arrive a hundred yards or so behind the cameraman and hop innocuously towards the halogen-lit scene, the awkward fidgeting of the presenter making it obvious to the viewers as to what was approaching.
It was Nicholas Witchell who finally knifed him.
John Seed lives in deepest Shropshire and attempts to write fiction whilst a Dalmatian sleeps at his feet.