A few weeks ago I actually witnessed an unbelievable sight. The entire family was outside. The kids played in the driveway while my husband and I stood looking up at a tree that had just lost a huge limb during a storm. We were both standing close to the tree studying another limb that looked dangerous and badly damaged. A squirrel had been moving around in tree, just doing what squirrels do, and then it happened! It looked like the furry little thing went to jump to a lower limb, but missed!? We stood there with open mouths, and watched the squirrel plummet to the ground. It was falling feet first, but did a mid-air flip. The squirrel hit the ground with a thud and went completely still. “I think it just committed suicide!” I said to my husband. He walked toward it and I yelled “Don’t touch it! It is probably just messing with us!” My husband got close, while I backed away. He then said, “I think it’s dead. Maybe it was sick. It is covered with ticks and they are swollen; it is actually pretty disgusting!”
My kids figured out that something unusual was happening. Possibly due to the fact that I was running down the hill covering my head (just in case more squirrels decided to dive bomb us). I was also screaming “Gross! That was so weird! Eww! That is so nasty!” My daughter asked what was going on, and I said that dad was looking at a dead squirrel. I told her that it was sick, and covered with bugs, and not to go near it. “Did it just die? What happened to it?” she asked. My husband tells her that it fell out of the tree. My daughter looked horrified and asked “What was wrong with it?” My husband then replies “Well honey, the squirrel may have had cataracts, a tree nut allergy, or it just might have been very, very sad!” My daughter now looked even more horrified and confused. I gave my husband “the look”, let out a big sigh, and shook my head. I took the kids in the house and as I closed the door, I could hear my husband outside laughing and saying “Babe, can you believe that? “I have never seen anything like that; it was seriously unbelievable! That thing just did a high dive right out of that tree. I give him a 10, except for the landing!” I shut the door and said “OH, dear!” My daughter asked what was wrong. I said “Nothing honey. I just think that daddy has been out in the heat a little too long!” She nodded as if she understood.
Here we are, two weeks later. My husband walks in covered in sweat and looking quite sticky. He had been outside for some time. I had already given the kids a bath and gotten them in bed. It had been the world’s longest day, and I finally had a chance to sit down. I sat on the bed and grabbed my iPad because I needed to return an email. My husband was standing over me, grumbling about our latest squirrel saga; they completely backed up the gutters along the entire side of our house causing a pretty serious problem. These relentless squirrels had climbed up inside the gutters, gotten under the gutter guards, and built a huge nest. The gutter guys had been at the house today and the estimate to fix the problem was well over $1,000. My husband was not happy! He looked at me and asked if I had seen the trap.
Evidently, while my husband was making our early coffee run, he ran by our local hardware store and bought some humane animal traps. He said that he just wanted to catch the furry little bandits, and take them somewhere else. He says that he sat the cage, or trap, near the gutter that they always enter. He went on to tell me that he then took tortilla chips, spread them with peanut butter, covered them with chocolate Cheerios, and then put them in the cage.
After letting this information soak in, I tell him that this all sounds completely ridiculous and like a huge waste of his time. “What are you going to do with the squirrel when you catch it?” I ask. “I am going to drive it up to the pool and let it go” he tells me. “Aren’t they like dogs? Don’t they come back? And you are not taking them in my car. I don’t want some tick and flea infested rodents running around in my car!” I say, after recently seeing that tick-covered squirrel spiral to his death. I then say, “I’m sorry; I’m tired. But I honestly don’t think you will catch one anyway.” “Guess what?” he says, “I already did!”
My husband has an interesting sense of humor, so I was trying to figure out if he was just messing with me. “Are you serious?” I asked. “I am dead serious!” he said. And as if the entire conversation had not already been weird, it now gets weirder! He then says “You should come look at the size of this thing; It’s huge! It’s so big that it bent the large cage! It is one big bull!” “A bull? I said. “Yeah, it’s a male – a bull!” he answers. I said “You are from California; you were a swimmer, a surfer, and a sunner. Now you do math all day. How do you know what male squirrels are called? And how do you know it was a male for that matter?” A question I now seriously regret asking as my husband replied, “Because I picked up the cage and was staring right at it! You can see his boy parts, and you should see the size of his “nads”, they are huge! I then said, “Nads? What are you talking about?” He answered, “His Cojones; they are Enormous. He must have to drag them up the tree! Seriously, come look!”
I looked at my husband and said “Honey, I am a little concerned that the work stress is getting to you. I think the 16 hour days are just too much. You have known me long enough to know that I would rather be poked repeatedly with a fork, than to go look at that squirrel. In fact, a unicorn will fly out of my tushy before I go look at that squirrel or his family jewels!” He finally started laughing and said “Yeah, OK; I’m tired anyway. I’m just going to let the thing go. Besides, anything with nads like that deserves to be free. But if it builds a nest in our gutters again, I’m going to teach it to skydive without a parachute – just like his friend.” I replied with “Whatever you say honey! And oh by the way, I don’t ever want to see, or hear about, animal reproductive parts again– especially the boy ones. That is just more than I need to know!”
After he left, I wondered if other people had lives like this. Are we the weirdest family in the world? Do other people have experiences or conversations like these? At least this conversation taught me a valuable lesson – to only ask my husband questions that I REALLY want the answers to. Also, I will never look at squirrels the same way again; they are cute no more! I think we are going to have to move back to the city – Yuck!