Have you ever thought that life might just be easier if you were a goat?
No bills to pay, no job to do; just hanging around in a field eating grass, bleating and being cute.
In his book titled GoatMan: How I Took A Holiday From Being a Human, Thwaites described how he adopted prosthetic hooves and attempted to eat a diet of grass in order to live more like a goat, after having thought for years that life would be much less stressful as an animal.
In an interview with BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme, Thwaites recalled thinking as a child that he wouldn't have to go to school if he was a cat, and later building on his wishful thinking after dog-sitting his niece's 'happy, joyous' dog.
He remembered thinking 'wouldn’t it be nice to just have a break from all of this stress?', and so wrote to the Wellcome Trust; a charitable foundation founded to fund research to improve human and animal health.
"They gave me a small arts award, which called my bluff, I suppose," he explained.
With his plan officially in motion, Thwaites' hopes to spend time as a goat became 'an investigation into how close we can come to fulfilling this ancient human dream'.
"I did a bit of research and you can easily find all the cave paintings [depicting] half-human and half-beast," he explained.
Thwaites spent nine months bringing his ideas together, with his funding helping pay for prosthetic limbs, including two extra legs and hooves, made by a doctor at the University of Salford prosthetics clinic.
He also looked into getting a fake stomach that would help him digest grass, but had to give up on that plan over warnings of health issues.
The author eventually travelled to a farm in the Alps to fully immerse himself in goat life, after which he described the three-day experience on the farm as a 'special kind of time'.
His book documents his 'hilarious and surreal journey through engineering, design, and psychology', and teases: "Will he make it? Do Thwaites and his readers discover what it truly means to be human?"
The venture came after Thwaites' previous book, The Toaster Project, described how he built a toaster from scratch after being inspired by Douglas Adam’s book Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, where a character finds himself unable to build a toaster after landing on a primitive planet.
After his days as a goat, Thwaites is now back to living a human life, though I'm sure there's a part of him that still longs for the simpler life in the fields.
Featured Image Credit: BBC World Service/Facebook