Snow White Doesn’t Live Here

It is mating season for skenks. How do I know? Because they spend it terrorizing humans. Yesterday, after doing some outdoor work, I came in and flopped myself into the recliner, intent on sucking up some a/c. About that time, a large skenk ran over my foot. For those of you who don’t know, a skenk is a “harmless” lizard. This one was shiny, brownish and just a tad over a foot long, nose to tail tip. Harmless is a relative term. I certainly could have been injured by running straight up a wall screaming, which is what I did directly after the skenk ran across my foot. Apparently skenks are frightened of women who can run straight up walls, because he went and hid under the love seat. After we both calmed down a bit, I upended the love seat and herded the stupid thing back out the front door. At least I was not tempted toward bad behavior. Last year about this time, I happened to be looking, when a skenk, bigger than today’s specimen and sporting a weird, orangish head, squeezed itself under the screen door (which obviously doesn’t fit real tight) and ran straight into my grown son’s cowboy boot! With great presence of mind, I quickly reached over and stood the boot upright, propping it there with a nearby can of paint. For a brief moment (well, ok, a longish moment–and I still giggle about it) I considered just leaving things like that until my son appeared and tried to put on the boot, but I figured that the ASPCA or some such group might take a dim view of that and really, what sort of parent does that to their kid? So I took the thing, boot and all, outside and dumped it, unceremoniously into the yard. They really are stupid. I had to shake that boot pretty hard to dislodge the lizard. You’d think he’d want out of such an unpleasant, malodorous place.
My most infamous critter encounter had to be the possum, however. A number of years ago (the grown son of the preceding paragraph was 2 or 3) my recently divorced self was having a rare child-free week-end. Coming home quite late, and slightly tipsy, I decided to loll about on the couch and watch a bit of tv. What I thought was our recently acquired kitten began to run to and fro on the back of the couch. It was having some sort of growling, snarling argument with the grown cat, who was on the floor behind the couch. All this activity was preventing me from fully enjoying the experience of watching tv through my eyelids! I smacked the back of the couch HARD with one hand and said “Rufus! Cut that out!” and the little bugger stopped running and HISSED at me! I sat up, opened my eyes and saw a half grown possum, less than 2 inches from my nose, making an unfriendly noise and displaying an amazing array of teeth. I levitated to a spot about 1/2 way across the room, opening the door to the outside world on my way by. We stared at one another briefly, him, still making that noise, me, in slack jawed astonishment. I decided to holler at him a bit, to encourage him to leave. That made the cat go away. I guess she figured I was going to handle it from there on out. It had no visible effect on the possum. Without taking my eyes off my immobile adversary for an instant, I balanced on one foot and removed my shoe. Fighting possums barefoot was not really my first choice, but I thought if I could kinda hit him in the back end he might go on out the door. I threw the shoe. The possum exploded into activity. Unfortunately instead of choosing the door the dang thing took off down the hall. I ran after it yelling and threw the other shoe. I don’t know why, I just didn’t know what else to do.
As the last of the possum vanished into my son’s bedroom, my roommate, awakened by all this unusual nocturnal commotion, appeared, with her fiance in tow. “What on earth are you doing?” they inquired, possibly not that politely. “Well, the was this possum and…” I weakly rejoindered, pointing rather feebly down the hall. They looked up and down the hall. They checked in the kitchen and living room. They closed the front door, looked at me solemnly, with compassion, and said, “You’re drunk. You should go to bed.” and returned to her room, silently shaking their heads. I stood there for a few minutes, wondering how I get involved in such ridiculousness. Then, decision made, I went to my room, where I pushed a dresser over the heating vent and shoved a large bath towel under the closed door. The next day I searched the kids’ rooms carefully and possum proofed them. I also called their Daddy and explained that they would be staying there a few days, until the possum situation was resolved. Relations with the roommate were a bit strained, as she tended to ask me if I’d seen the possum yet and smile to herself. I just bided my time. It took nearly three days. By a stroke of good fortune the fiance was there again, taking advantage of the extended child free environment. One night, in the wee hours there was a horrendous uproar. When I got up, the hallway was fully occupied, by naked persons, babbling about possums. It seems that one had climbed out of the duct work and ascended to the bed via the bedspread. With a perfectly straight face I looked them both in the eye and said, “You’re drunk. You should go to bed.” I then turned on my heel and marched back to my room, closing the door behind me.
Then very next morning a live trap, baited with cat food appeared in my kitchen. The day after that the possum was relocated and the duct work was repaired. No one ever again informed me that I was drunk

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3 Comments

  1. Redo You Project said,

    May 20, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    What a story! Hope you are doing great today.

    Jeff,
    Redo…

    • witchyluck said,

      May 20, 2013 at 10:31 pm

      thank you. Watch out for possums. They’re tricky. 😉

      • Redo You Project said,

        May 21, 2013 at 4:02 am

        Those little guys are tricky. I have to watch for those who play possum! Thanks for the replies and have a great day!

        Jeff


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