I'm always on the lookout for something in my life that I can stretch all out of proportion in order to make it chuckle-worthy. Many times, I'm the only one who sees the humor in the situation. Now the tables are turned.
Since last Thursday afternoon, I've had this...thing...going on in my life that everyone around me is laughing about, but I'm not so sure I get the joke.
I walked out my front door late Thursday afternoon, on my way to the garage to get the smoke-belching machine I refer to as the lawn mower, when above my head I heard a shuffling of feet ("Deal me in!") and a guttural, animalistic mruff. I tapped on the part of the roof that hangs directly above our front door and I thought whatever it was that was up there was going to crash through and clamp its jaws on my jugular. If that was a squirrel, it had the healthiest Napoleon complex on the planet.
Later, when Beloved brought me a glass of water, she just happened to mention that our next-door neighbor, who walks the streets (but not in that way) at strange hours, told her that there's a raccoon in the 'hood. At which point, the clouds parted, a harp glissando sounded, and the Truth burst upon my sight: "I think I know where the raccoon lives."
That night, it took us several hours to get to sleep as we listened to the squatter in our attic rearranging pieces of furniture and singing in the shower. I tapped on our bedroom ceiling with a yardstick and Rocky Raccoon answered back with the drum part from Wipeout.
Bleary-eyed and dragging, I was making animalistic noises myself as I arrived at work Friday morning and quickly did some research on the World Wide Wackfest to find a professional answer to my woes. My co-workers, of course, were quick to come up with a plethora of possible paths to take, but I just didn't think it was practical to put a cougar in my attic or a howitzer in my driveway.
The founder and CEO of Elmer's Varmint Gitters ("We git 'em dead or git 'em gone!") arrived at the homestead Friday afternoon and put a trap on the roof, next to the hole that "I've been meaning to get to once the weather got nice enough for the squirrels to be outside." The idea being, when the nocturnal critter leaves the attic to get some grub (or possibly, quite literally, some grubs), it will end up in a one-way crate to the wastelands of Farmington, free to infest someone else's attic.
As I write these words, it is Wednesday afternoon. The wire mesh connecting the hole to the trap has been peeled away, an additional escape has been made by a board being pried into the soffit, and we are no longer being kept awake by the sounds of scampering raccoon feet...
The sound robbing us of sleep now is guttural, animalistic laughter.