Instructions on Rat Poison
(be sure to wash your hands after reading this)
"Yup" says the overweight New Your City employee "I've seen them draw blood out of babies fingers! If given chance,..day'll bite all de flesh off yer bones an day still be lookin fer more."
The person speaking is a city employee, on the Discovery Channel, fighting the NY City rat problem. He's walking through abandon buildings and placing packets of rat poison under floor boards, behind walls and in the dark shadows where rats appear from, and disappear into. "Why look they even play pool!" he laughs as he enters an all but abandon room, except for a pool table.
Now he's really got my attention, because I have a rat in my yard. And I was thinking of getting a pool table for the house, But not any more! Not if they can play pool! I once saw a painting on velvet of rats smoking and playing pool? Scary!
I have to rid the yard of my rat.
So for two straight weeks I went out of my way to annoyed my rat. If I saw Mickey (Mickey Rat) when I was pulling into the drive I would chase him with the car and honk the horn. I'd fill in the holes he dug under the fence with what my dog left for me in the lawn. I'd yell at him through the widow and make growling bear sounds. Rats hate bears. I even went as far as leaving out some of Aunt Tilley's leftover Christmas cake. Now if I could just get him in a rat sized Christmas sweater and turn the heat up to old person, he would defiantly feel sick and want to leave.
All this persecution and still little Mickey would sit on the fence, rub his belly and lick his little rat lips, as if to say 'Is that all you got fat boy!'
Time to introduce Plan B. Time to step it up a notch and get a finger breaking, rat squishing spring loaded trap. It was time to get that,....but after my last experience with this type of rat removal system I was looking elsewhere. It was so gross! It got so I was throwing the traps away with every capture. And I swear, to you and out loud, that I smashed two fingers for every rat caught.
This time I was going chemical. I was going to poison Mickey Rat with all the killing power science would allow. And science has allowed such a strong poison that when you go to pay for this diabolical rat removal remedy at the rat poison store someone specially schooled in poison is called for over the intercom (no matter how many boxes you buy in any given month) to caution you on it's uses. I was sure my Mickey problem was finished.
Following the direction from the city worker on Discovery Channel, and not the instructions on the box, or the learned person at the rat store, I placed the packets of death along ratty paths under and away from birds, dogs, cats, sheep, cattle, wolves and roaming bison. Two shows may have blended into one as I fell asleep partway through his instructions.
Next day I walked my trap line along the fence, searched under the ever stationary Chevy, looked behind the wood pile, in the lawn mower shed and under a pile of smoldering buffalo chips I could later use for cooking. Seemed funny to me too.
Two packets of instant death had been torn opened. I rubbed my bony hands together and let out a cackle to the sky just as lightning flashed and thunder boomed. I thought that was pretty random and wished someone else had also seen that.
Next day I was on the line again. A bit more was taken from the same two packets so I moved the other two that hadn't been touched to different spots and put out the fire on the one smoldering with the buffalo chips.
But I was still seeing Mickey. Sometimes he was smaller and sometimes bigger and almost a different colour. Must be the dog do-do I'm filling his holes with I thought.
A week goes by and I can't remember where I had placed all the packets of death but the ones I could remember seemed like they were being eaten. So I went back to the store for more. Again the learned poison control person they keep in the back came out and advised me how to use this poison, and stressed I need to read the instructions. I gave her an all assuring nod that I'd read it, crossed my heart, and left.
With all the poison bought and eaten I was sure old Mickey was dead. One taste of this poison should be enough to end any thought of him playing pool. Poison packets are disappearing or lost and after about a month I'm still seeing Mickey. So now it's back to Rat World for more Rat-be-gone.
Barb and I are now on a first name bases at the rat poison store. That's all they sell is rat poison. (Or so I tell the wife. If she knew it was the hardware store I'd be bringing back things for weekend filling chores as well). Barb drones through her legal requirements as I mouth her exact words and then promise to read the instructions, cross my heart and head home.
As I place the new poison packets carefully not to threaten migrating buffalo herds I decide that maybe I should read the box for instructions. And what unimpressed me the most with my science filled packets of instant death was that it wasn't instant. It takes 8 days! My wife's meatloaf could do it in 4! And do you know that rats have mommy and daddy time as much as seven times a day with other mommy's and daddy rats? Plus my neighbour Ron said that at this time of year, with easy access to water it could be even more ineffective. So all during this slow process of being poisoned they're repopulating the neighbourhood. I'm so lucky I have only one rat!
All I'm doing is introducing a harmful diet that isn't even addictive or that deadly to him. It's like us with salt or chocolate only rats are smart enough to say this prepackaged food hurts my stomach so I won't eat it. I know this cause there's Mickey scurrying atop the fence with his crappy dyed fur coat. All I've done is given him an upset stomach for the last two months while he's been doing 50 shades of grey rats.
Now I have seen the damage poisons has done in the past to food chains. A rat dies and is eaten by a cat, dog, cougar (not the lady 2 doors down) bear or buffalo it affects that secondary animal very seriously. But not now. They'd have to eat infected rats for 8 days.
So instead of deadly poison why can't we make them ineffective in the mommy and daddy department? Why hasn't science figured out how to make rats unattractive to each other? Maybe introduce that part from a human into the rat so that it's repulsed by it's own self.
Introduce self loathing into a genetic marker, make them hate themselves so much that they feel no rat wants them (cause we don't!). Take away the desire for mommy and daddy time and make the female nag him. Make them marry! Introduce some genetic code that makes them feel responsible for their offspring. That'll slow them down.
Lord knows its not hard to find a rat in a laboratory. There right there! Get them addicted to heroine or crack. Let them kill themselves with their addictions! And let the dealers and drug king pins deal with addicted rats stealing their supply till they do. After all they have guns and can shoot them.
I think I've brought up several new good ideas to eradicate the grey pool playing rat. I hope that perhaps city hall might take up the cause and use their full city status to pressure the science community into manufacturing a better more effective cure. Cause to tell you the truth I think there's more than just my Mickey out there.
Monday, February 23, 2015
Wednesday, February 18, 2015
The Front Door is no Longer Needed
(a conversation between Bob and Jim)
Bob: "My husbands home! My husbands home! she yells as she runs down the drive to meet the mailman. She's waving her arms all excited that I was leaving late for work that day."
Jim: "What was that?...I was putting the lawn mower away."
Bob. "Our mailman Brad, I was going to mention how the family will miss him. He's been doing our house for...?.. about a year before Darren was born. And. Now with home delivery to stop...well I won't need a mail slot in the house anymore."
Jim: "No I guess not. Soon to be quite the business I guess repairing that air vent in all the homes. Just let me water these begonias and will go in."
Bob: "Mail delivery has gone the way of milk delivery to the home. What's next the daily paper? Just turn off that light at the front door because it's no longer needed. The once welcoming front part of our house with it's well lit broad walk leading to it, that suggested success, is now an echo to a brief past."
Jim: "There that should do it, all watered. Come on inside.
Bob: "Think about it, who now needs a front door? Who needs an elaborate front entry? Nobody answers, or goes through their front doors. Gone is that Avon lady, all put together just so, knocking at your front door. And you looking like Mrs. Cleaver, draped in pearls welcoming her into your modern home."
Jim: "Who told you I dress up like Mrs. Cleaver?"
Bob: "Ha Ha! ....it was Bill from hockey.......You just going to wipe your hands on your pants? Could you at least look a little professional and wash em? That whole 'WELCOME' door mat is a thing of the past. People don't entertain at home anymore, homes are too small and close together. So the people you'd like to welcome, you don't. And you have to agree with me here, when theres a knock at the door right away you get defensive. Who's There? They use to say that in the old days, then we stopped for 50-75 years and now we're back saying it again. You don't want people knocking on the house unless it's expected. A knock means somebody wants something."
Jim: "You Know I Can't Hear You With The Water Running."
Bob: "I GUESS IT WAS DOCTORS that stopped home delivery first. And now we have to go someplace to get our mail. They should put the banks of mailboxes in pizza and Chinese food restaurants. So when you order home delivery for a pie or the No. 5 with egg rolls you could tell them to bring your mail when they come."
Jim: "Good idea! Have a seat."
Bob: "A home use to be where all the neighbourhood kids played. Some had messy unkept yards, with bikes and half finished projects spilling out their carports. Some neighbours were loud and got a bad reputation for being so. Every house was different, people expressed their own individuality in colours and styles. When it would be resold it would still keep the name of he first owner. 'Hey do ya know the Johnstons house where the Kilmeners live?.....' Houses were individuals that had their own character. Now we've made them boxes of isolation to fit our own attempt at isolating ourselves, via computer from society. Hiding our secret lives from judging eyes of society, letting us be the wrong we are. Houses hold secrets. BROO-HAHA!"
Jim: "Could you just lay back and do a little less talking."
Bob: "........... ........The postman doesn't ring twice, he doesn't ring at all! Bit by bit we've successfully turned our homes into castles. Fortress all the same colour lined up in a row. Fenced for protection. We don't leave doors or windows open, we lock them from all who would dare approach our perimeter. That Brad and his bag of bills and shiny pamphlets, entering my property, inserting whatever he liked into my home. I think I'm glad he's gone! Oh sure it's great how Brad has taken a real liking to Darren, but he brings no letters from grandma or strange Aunt Fizzy. There's no envelopes for birthdays or Christmas in his daily delivery. It's all junk mail!"
Jim: "Is it possible for you to open your mouth without speaking?"
Bob: "Now with the government making home mail delivery a thing of the past they have allowed us to continue on to or final quest of total isolation. That strange weirdo living alone on the mountain top isn't such the nut we all thought him to be...is he? He's now us! A house now, is just to sleep in, and if you're lucky you'll bump into another family member if they're back on day shift."
Jim: "We'll that's a thought....not a good one, but, it's a thought. What say we ask you to open wide, maybe look around, see what you've been up to?"
Bob: "No problem! Just stay out of my computer, phone, medicine cabinet, under the bathroom sink, garage, bedroom drawers and...?...between the mattress."
Jim: "No Ramblin Rose, open your mouth, without talking, let me look for cavities, your teeth, dentist, got it. Unlike you I have something to hide."
Bob: "Wwwwhh laaatt wwwaass nnnaaawww nnniiicccce...."
Jim: "Okay now you're talking sense."
Saturday, February 14, 2015
Fifty Shades of Beige
Since early December, after breaking up with your girlfriend, you've been able to be your own man. Horizontally and digitally linked into everything sports. Hibernating, waiting for February 14th to be over so that you can get back with your old girlfriend. Back to normal after all the craziness and expense of Christmas, New Years and then Valentines Day that you so cleverly planned to miss. The oh so cheap winter of you. Go to work, come home and do all the stuff you can't do the other three seasons. Which includes everything but going out and having a good time.
I say that because you were stupid enough to do a selfie of yourself and send it to your post Valentines Day sweetheart last year. The very same picture she used for her screen saver at work. Because now you have a whole army of your ex-girlfriend's friends that know what you look like. And you have no idea who they are!
Why you may have even been unlucky enough to try and hit on one of them. They knew who you were right away! They may have even trapped you into making a fool of yourself. Cause they just love going to work the next day and telling your ex all about your last nights failed adventure.
Now the ex has knowledge of what an a#% you are. She may tell you right away or keep that knowledge and use it against you in the future. Oh it could be as far away as your 25th wedding anniversary, but she'll use it. And you'll try to deny it (mostly because you honestly won't remember it). But she will assure you it was you, and has the pictures to prove it.
So if you really like her, stay home. Don't listen to your buddies. You don't need to go out and have a good time. You don't deserve it. But they do!
They went through Christmas and New Years with all the expenses of fancy festive feasts, perhaps vacation, gifts, parties and more gifts. And now it's all over. Their girlfriend has dumped them, because it's a depressing time of year, their depressed and it's the guys fault.
So on money they don't have, they want to go out with their friends, also suddenly single with no money, and share stories of woe. And as they cry on each others shoulder about women, plans formulate to date more. Perhaps your ex girlfriend, you're not dating her,...yet. But that's what buds do. We're guys! Beware of other males at the watering hole.
Your only chance to win her back is if you can remember that conversation she had about everything she ever thought of and her favorite flower. Because that would mean you cared and listened.
It would be that conversation she started just as you laid down on the couch after a hard days work. Women think when a guy lays on the couch he wants to talk. You can spend the whole day together and nothing. Get back home lie on the couch and she starts up. She wants your opinion on this and that, on her hair colour, her make-up and that dress she wore to her cousins birthday. She wants to tell you about that so and so at work that stole her position, how she loves yellow roses, her girlfriend's pregnant and the paint in the bathroom is to yellowie . It's about this point you're wishing you could run out and get hit by a bus! But you nod and smile, throw in the occasional ah-ha and mention the word yellow a few times cause you heard her say it.
WAIT,..WHAT? Yellow,.. Yellow roses. She likes yellow roses. You send her yellow roses...you're back together...you paint the bathroom beige and before you know it you're married. WAIT,...WHAT? Married?
Married! And now with children, your lives are now no longer your own. Late night feedings, diapers and sickness. Its the best of times,..the worst of times. You're driving kids everywhere. The house is filled with action and drama. Feelings are being expressed through and by the kids bedroom doors. They graduate, they drive, they start their lives. And then somewhere in there, if you're lucky, your children have children. It's a good time now. Most of your fighting is done as a couple. She had more stamina, and so she won. Your children are no longer teens and they've lived long enough to forgive you. You've built a history together that probably has more years in it than the time from now 'till death do you part' does. It all happened so fast.
You're still in love with her, whatever that turned out to be. It seems different with each couple. Hallmark doesn't have your definition of it in the Anniversary section at the Dollar Store. The one that reads ' I want your pain and sorrow, your aches and woes, all the disease and sickness in your bones. So I don't have to listen to you go on about it!'
You're the lucky ones, still together after all the years. She fell in love with a big dufass and over the years you've proved her right over and over. But her day can't be complete without you. And you would be totally lost if not for her. That's what happens to love.
It's sometimes not wanted, not expected, it just happens. Your plans of being aloof fail. And you're glad they did. Love is not all the wild, crazy, fifty shades of grey, electrifying no kids for the weekend kinda moments. But more a fifty shades of beige. You're the masses, the norm. You, me and our significant others, are the many unsung loving marriages that make up most of society. The day to day couples that through love and sacrifice unite and bind families together. You see us in the malls and grocery stores just frumping along, nothing special. Two people working together, building and running a family. We unfortunately for the advertising world are the face, taste, smell and the desire of love. The fifty shades of beige love. A love that asks nothing, other than to be with them tomorrow. And then all the other tomorrow's you both have left.
Wednesday, January 28, 2015
FALL, winTER, sprING
Yes people of the West Coast of Canada we are going through that time of year known as 'Falltering'. It's part Fall, all Winter and part Spring. A super season consisting of half of the year where the weather differs very little. A dreary, boring, overcast, just about double digit temperatures of will it rain, or will it not rain (who cares, everything I own is wet) six months.
Falltering starts early to mid November with a warm wind storm and a weekend of solid rain. 'I'm here!' it bellows just as all the holiday shopping starts to mark the beginning of Falltering. It comes in like a naughty child. Pulling at your coat and trying to break your umbrella while it water bombs you as you blindly run between your car and the mall entrance.
While in the mall mind control has begun to help us not go nuts. The powers that be, unknown friendly government forces, flash colorful lights of red blue and green. Trees are illuminated that hypnotize us into thinking that it's base needs to be blocked by beautifully wrapped boxes covered in bows. All this is to get us out of our homes to stimulate the economy and give us something to do other than play in puddles.
People stumble around wishing each other 'Merry' and 'Happy' this and that to make you think it's going to be 'Merry' and 'Happy'. This is the start of Falltering.
This spirit of hope last till the first week of January. Till about the time January's days are equal to the temperature. It's then you realize you can't take Falltering any more and need a holiday in some sun. Hot, burning, blinding, cancer causing solar rays are what you need, and now! And it's everybody that needs it. Vacations, hotels and airlines are filled to capacity in this the most expensive time of year to travel. Thank you very much Falltering!
One week, ten days or two weeks if you're lucky is all the time you can get away from Falltering. People and work need you back here in the gloom and rain. Jealous, unhappy, wet people that don't want to see your sun filled pictures splashed with turquoise water and weird umbrellas that block rays from the sun. Why Bill from shipping even asked why I pointed the camera flash right back at the camera. Upon explaining the existence of the sun come January in other places he wasn't the only one that in their mind went 'Oh ya'.
In mid to late January, just to remind you of the ever always present, puddle by the door at work,... Falltering makes the water hard, slippery and dangerous. Falltering does something it seldom does now-a-days it goes a bit cold. Just for a day or two. It'll poop a dump of snow, clog traffic and bring a more three dimensional look to moisture. The kids will stay home from school and you'll lie to the people at work about being sick that day. Last time you left them home alone you wound up with a new kitchen.
Little Cindy and Bobby will want to play in the snow and you'll search the house for gloves, mittens, socks anything to put on their hands. It's snow boots instead of just rubber boots, toques, scarfs and sweaters. Forty five min. later they exit the house wearing Aunt Tilly's oven mitts that she made for you last Christmas. Rubber boots now too small for their feet because of the extra socks wrapped in plastic bags. This with your 2010 Winter Olympic toque and your rayon print 'Sunday go to Binos' fashion scarf.
But you need not fear the neighbours assessment for your children's fashion choices. For one immediatly slips on the puddle and comes in crying. And you don't even get the tears dried, before the other comes in complaining of being cold and wet.
It's about here you phone work and tell them you'll be in a little late.
Two days later the snow's gone thanks to a pineapple express of blowing warm air mixed with watery spurts. Just the way you remember that sick day on your holidays three weeks ago. You just didn't know what it was called.
February splashes by and your thanking God for it's only 28 days. This leads to March and something the sports world calls March Madness. For you, this means something totally different than it does to them. You want out! Your socks have been wet for five months now! Wet feet for that long has an effect on a persons thinking. You hear of the madness of Spring Break that collage and university kids go on. It's mayhem! And you're all for it! Middle aged sensibility is faltering because of the length of Falltering.
Keep it together! Only about a month and a half to go.
April starts with a 'Fools Day'. And of past recent years anger has taken over from the light hearted humorous pranks. People turn mean and their laughs are now different from the last time you heard laughter,..in August. Their laugh is like the laugh you hear on that late night weekend movie that comes from the cellar. And that laugh today is coming from your dear sweet mother.
April creeps and teases. The clouds in the western sky stay lighter longer in the day casting a beautiful reflection on the now shrinking puddles. The once happy child's poem of 'April showers bring Mayflowers', is replaced with April rainstorm combine with hail stones.
I can't take the teasing of a little sun, and then have it drowned, like we got caught with something we weren't suppose to have, with hail and rain.
It's soon after, Falltering starts to break. A little extra sun where the full orb is almost visible. This is when the West Coast population goes nuts. We all dress like a hot July afternoon, and head to the beaches like lemmings all crowding to the ocean shores. But unlike them we stop. We, with what little brain matter that isn't all soggy and wet say 'Hang on dummy! Remember a January 1st swim? You don't want to end Falltering with a cold'.
Falltering ends with the welcome of allergies, hay fever and stuffy noses! Yes Falltering falters after the first half of Spring. It gives way to lingering glimpses of what seems to be the flash from my camera, but longer. Right Bill?
Monday, January 26, 2015
Sunday, January 18, 2015
Pushers and Pullers
"Excuse me? Thank you very much. Excuse me just gotta get past. Thank you. Pardon me gotta get around you there. Thanks. You're kinda in the way here, need past. Hello?"
This is me barely in the door of the Super-Dooper Grocery Giant trying to push past they that pull the blasted wheeled basket. All forward motion and communication fail so you back up and trip over a wayward come-a-long basket someone's left right behind you. Which not only produces your butt on the floor but several 2 for 1 pickle jars as well.
'Wet cleanup at the north entrance.' Is heard from a ceiling speakers as you unwind yourself from the now ownerless come-along basket.
Why in the name of canned pimentos did anyone ever think that dragging a wagon of groceries behind you, one that Pullers seem to have no idea of its location, is better than pushing a responsible basket, in front of you that you steer?
It's become an issue that has grocery stores divided. They that push, and they that pull.
The little Red Riding-hood baskets, of they that carry, don't get to have an opinion. It's the only thing Pushers and Pullers agree on,..Rookies.
As you can tell I'm a Pusher. My guidance counsellor in Grade 12 predicted it. And I do get irritated with them that pull. Pullers are people that don't want to fork out the Quarter for the serious once a week shopping cart. People that are Pullers run in every day of the work week and buy 14 things (but they that stand behind you in the 15 or less express check-out count 21) and then they're on their way.
But you're not on your way are you? You and your extra three foot arm appendage extend cross ways in the aisle blocking my way to the potato chips. Dangerous thing to come between a saltoholic and his fix.
And even when Pullers are moving, their baskets of death don't stay behind them. It fans out to widen their advance and retreat. The basket pulls to the left or right of the Puller like a wayward child trying to draw their attention someplace else.
And it seems you are totally oblivious to this extension of your youness. Do you think when you stop your basket will heel like a dog and just come and sit at your heels? Not unless the floor is slanted the right way will that ever happen.
Then there are times you abandon it with its ever so annoying, long, aisle blocking handle extended. You've dumped it and soloed one aisle over cause other Pullers in the coffee aisle, where you need to go, have stopped to herd and visit. So you go it alone, sans basket. Dancing around, over and and behind three Pullers to collect Seattle's Best #4 grind. All the while you, now blocking aisle 3, and allowing them to continue blocking 4. While I'm still trying to hide my wet butt stinking like Polskie Ogorkies stuck behind your temporarily abandoned basket.
And God bless the Pullers that allowed their little Jimmy to commandeer the once lowly come-along basket and turn it into a sugar fueled race car. A candy injected British racing green sports car that races up and down aisles leaving mommy and daddy free to get past other Pullers that now linger in front of the spaghetti sauces. Mom and dad set off to acquire 2 jars of tomato sauce and 4 cans of Beefaroni, then retreat to find little Jimmy (this is usually done audibly). They then deposit their acquisitions in the aforementioned basket and then it's back in the trenches fighting through other Pullers and Pushers, teaming with the Carriers on their quest for more sustenance while little Jimmy burns doughnuts by the dry goods. Where did Jimmy get the matches? I've looked everywhere for them.
The only Pullers that watch their baskets are the cute ones. The ones that you want to bump into. Ones that would be all apologetic and flash you a smile and say sorry. Cute ones that wouldn't notice your age or the hemorrhoid cream and Fixident. But if only you were 30 yrs. younger and she was 30 IQ Points lower. A beautiful girl who wants you for your money and is really bad at math.
Sorry, ....I got lost there for a second.
Why even the homeless don't want to be Pullers. You never see a homeless Puller!
Now I know Pushers can be guilty of the same crimes as Pullers. But at least when we're in the way we know about it and can see the problem and correct it in a timely fashion. It's right in front of us. Pullers have no clue where their basket is behind them.
Maybe if they were required to wear a rear view mirror head band around they're skull. Or put mirrors on the come-along basket itself, then they would know the number of Pushers that were piling up behind them. Plus if you're going to be a Puller it should be required that you understand excuse me, move it and coming through in more than five languages.
And Pullers, when they've emptied their come-along basket at the check-out they just leave them there. People have to be hired to continually collect them and move them out of the way. Not us Pushers. We're considerate. We take our baskets outside and line them up neatly out of the way. And then other a pushers bring them back in one by one to repeat the process.
Pushers we must unite and educate the wandering Pullers. So I'm starting Pushers United. Or P U as we'll refer to our selfs. And to start we'll show our numbers. When passing another Pusher give them a big P U. You'll be surprised how empowering it will feel to have so many give you a P U. while grocery shopping.
So let's unite and make Pullers Pushers. And remember we're all in this together. I'm pulling,...sorry pushing for ya.