You've probably seen the pictures before: a handful of animals staring directly into the camera. Their eyes are pitch black, unblinking. Their mouths are pursed tight into disapproving frowns. They call themselves "The Council", and they have been the subject of increasingly more and more memes since the world transitioned to video conferencing. I reached out to The Council, and they graciously agreed to an interview via Zoom. Here is how it went.
Interviewer: Thank you for meeting with me today.
Lizard: Oh no, thank you. We've been meaning to do an interview with the Odyssey for some time now, and while it's only through a computer screen, I am so pleased to make your acquaintance.
Interviewer: Each of you rocketed to internet memeability individually. When and how did you decide to band together as The Council? And how was it like meeting each other for the first time?
Lizard: I think it was the Dog's idea. I know he doesn't show it, but he's a very excitable and friendly creature who just wanted some more companionship in his life. So he called us up one day, and, well, here we are!
Hamster: *squeak squeak*
Lizard: I couldn't agree more.
Interviewer: I see a lot of other front-facing animals and people on the internet. Are they also part of The Council, or is it just you guys?
Lizard: Haha, well, we did start a Discord server recently for aspiring Council members. It was the Hamster's idea. So yes, I suppose they are on the Council. The more, the merrier!
Hamster: *squeak squeak SQUEAK*
Lizard: Alright, fine, we'll block Peppa Pig.
Interviewer: Can I join the Council?
Lizard: You… you might not be the right fit for our group.
Interviewer: How come?
Lizard: Forgive me for being blunt, but you're just not photogenic. You're too far back from the camera, your face is too expressive, and you're too well-lit. If you can fix those things, then we will welcome you into our Discord with open arms.
Lizard: Yes, and fins.
Interviewer: As you know, we've all been staying home for the last several weeks in order to contain the spread of the Coronavirus. What are you most looking forward to doing once everything goes back to normal?
Dog: *wags tail* Arf!
Cat: *grooms head*
Lizard: We used to have biweekly outings together, so we're excited to resume those once it's safe.
Interviewer: What kinds of outings?
Lizard: Oh, you know, movies, amusement parks, escape rooms. Personally, I can't get wait to get back on the green. I was so close to beating Fish the last time we played, but she still came out two strokes ahead of me. Two strokes! You'd better look out, though, because I've been playing a lot of Wii Sports in my free time.
Shortly after that, the connection broke and we had to end the interview. The next day, I got a heartfelt email from the Cat:
Well said, Cat. Well said.