I Hate Squirrels

Bastards. Little furry rodent adorably cute bastards. Squirrels. The bane of my existence.

Jen and Harry like to have bagels for breakfast now and then. Today is Instacart day so Jen included a bag of bagels in the grocery order. The delivery came and in good social distance practice they left it outside on the steps. There were only a few minutes between the delivery and me going out to get it, but that was enough time for a couple of squirrels to rip open the bag of bagels and have at it.

Damn you, squirrels! First my bird seed, now my bagels? Is there no end to your evil? Will the torment never end?

Hawk

I’m trying to rake, but the awesomeness of having two hawks hanging out with me is making it tough to stay focused. That and my back hurts.

Ouch

I’ve cut one little section of the front yard. My back is terribly unhappy with me.

I’m sitting on the back patio, watching Agents of Shield on my iPad as the wind whips through the very tall grass. In the woods in front of me there are three turkeys hanging out. In the woods to my right there are three or four kids exploring the wilderness.

I’m curious to see if they meet up.

Things are Getting Weird, Explained

Okay, here’s the dish, along with lots of back story that you’ll find boring and will probably make you stop reading before you get to the actual weird.

Back story #1 – The wood stove.

When we were kids, my parents had a wood/coal stove installed into the cellar. It was setup for wood at first, and it cut down on our energy bills quite a bit. Years later we switched to coal because it was easier to acquire and store. I’m not sure if it made any difference to the budget or not. They stopped using it completely many years ago so it’s just sitting there. Once we opened it up in the late fall to clean it before using it for the cold months and found a dead squirrel inside. It had fallen down the chimney, wiggled its way through the pipes and into the stove and died. It was gross. At the time it was sad, but now that I’ve come to hate squirrels (they steal bird seed from my feeders) I’m kinda happy about it. Suck it, squirrels.

As part of the initial installation of the stove we had a vent put into the basement ceiling/living room floor with a fan that would help blow the warm air from the stove up to the living room. It worked great, and to a kid it gave me a cool new thing to use while playing with Star Wars toys. I basically had a real world Sarlacc pit in my living room floor.

Fast forward to 2020, the vent is still in the floor. The fan hasn’t been turned on in decades, and the actual metal vent that covers the fan is pretty much bashed to hell. It’s got to go.

Back story #2 – The bulkhead.

This one will be much, much shorter. We have a bulkhead door in the cellar. It leads to the back yard. There’s an inside door, then a bunch of concrete steps that lead up to an outside door. Simple, right?

The actual story – That wascally wabbit.

My brother in law, Ken has decided that today is the day that the hole in the living room floor gets covered. He brought a bunch of tools into the house through the bulkhead. He opened both doors, took a load of stuff in from his car, went back outside to get another load and…

A rabbit ran into the house.

No, really. A friggin brown little rodent bunny rabbit hopped on down the bulkhead stairs into the cellar. Once there it likely got really confused and found itself a really good hiding place and hunkered down, apparently waiting for more bunnies to come and rescue it, because that’s probably how it would work in a Disney cartoon, right?

That was about 9:00am. It’s now coming up on 2:00pm and that little shit is still there. How the hell are we going to get it out? One of those box leaning on a stick with a carrot underneath rabbit traps that they use in cartoons? Does those even work? Do we leave a trail of carrot chunks leading from the cellar up the bulkhead stairs and out the door in the hopes of enticing him to follow the path? It’s a little bunny, what if the stairs are too steep?

What the ever loving fuck? Isn’t there enough shit going on in my parents’ lives right now?

A bunny rabbit.

I shit you not.

A bunny friggin’ rabbit.

Woodland Adventures

My beloved wife ordered some groceries through instacart today.  In the spirit of social distance I like to wait 5-10 minutes after the delivery dude arrives just to make sure he’s not going to accidentally turn around and come back again.  Paranoid?  Hells yes, but who cares.

When I went out onto the steps to bring the bags in their was a little fluffy tailed rodent sitting on top of one of them.  Mammalia Sciuridae… I think… or is it Sciuridae Mammalia?  I don’t remember high school biology at all.  Whatever, it was a little bastard muthatruckin’ squirrel.  He was sitting on top of one of the grocery bags which was open at the top to expose a loaf of bread.  Squirrel bitch had his nose in a tiny little hole in the plastic bag the bread was in that he had gnawed out and he was munching on a teeny tiny morsel of bread.  I hate that little shit with every fibre of my being, but even I have to admit that it was super cool.

So that loaf of bread never came into the house and it somehow lead to a second story involving wilderness adventures.

I brought in the rest of the groceries, wiped everything down like a good quarantined doobee, washed my hands, and then went back out for the bread.  I took it into the back yard and threw it all over the place.  If the prick squirrel wants it, the prick squirrel and all his prick squirrel buddies can have it.  I took a picture because I am the undisputed king of all things nerd.

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So there I was, out in the back yard admiring the view while the temperature slowly ticked it’s way up toward 60 degrees of Spring bliss.  As is often the case these days my eyes wandered over to the “tree incident”.  Last summer while we were in Florida a tree had tried to fall down but it hit a second tree.  The trunk of the second tree split dramatically, but managed to stay up.  Now the first tree is leaning against the second tree.  Someday they are going to come down.  Let’s just hope they both fall in the same direction and that our yard is in the other direction.

The underbrush hasn’t started growing in yet.  The weather was beautiful.  I could actually see a roundabout path to the “tree incident”.  Yeah, I’m going exploring.  I’ve wanted to do it with my camera but I just said screw it and went with just my iPhone.  Before we got there I had to look at this and ask what the hell is this?

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And now we get to the tree itself.  I can’t really see this from the yard, but I could see enough to know it probably wasn’t as simple as tree A falling on tree B.  The fact of the matter is, tree A didn’t just fall, it snapped off about 6-7 feet from the ground.  It then hit the second tree and snapped again, with the lower half dropping to the ground and the upper half (I say half, but it’s really more like the upper 80%) dropped straight down so that it was standing up on the ground and then it fell over into tree B.  It looks pretty chaotic and it makes me kinda wish I had seen it happen.

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Then there was the water.  I knew there was a small body of water somewhere behind the neighbor’s house.  I thought it was further away, but it was just beyond the first hill, and the “tree incident” sits on top of that first hill.

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The question is, is this a pond?  Is it a lake?  Is it an ocean?  Is it just a puddle?  I’m guessing it’s just a big puddle.  I can’t see how far away this body of water goes.  That’s a woodland adventure for another day though.

And now at long last we come to the actual point of the story.

It’s Spring.  It’s the woods.  It is well known that there are ticks living out in them thar trees.  Deer ticks.  Lyme disease carrying little arachnid asshole ticks.  Every once in a while we’ll find one crawling on us after we went out in the yard.  It happens.  Once I found one buried in my gut.  I had to take a lot of antibiotics that day, let me tell you.

So ticks were on my mind, but I didn’t see anything when I got back to the house.  It is tough to look at your own ass though so who knows.  I got into the house, said hello to everyone, went to the office to check out the pictures on my phone and… about two minutes later… found a friggin’ deer tick crawling on my leg.  I grabbed it in a tissue, flushed it’s murderous, diseased ass down the toilet, and jumped in the shower.  My clothes are in the washing machine.

The moral of the story is thus:  Squirrels suck and ticks suck too.

Bird Feeders – The Return – 2017 Edition

Bird Feeders

After the tragic end of last year’s bird feeders I told myself I was done. I was not going to replace the damage. I was going to just give up.

Now here we are, almost a year later… and there is a new bird feeder pole, a new anti-squirrel baffle, and two new bird feeders.

What a nerd I am. I guess I just need things to take my mind off of how pissed off I am about our fascist government.

Bird Feeders

Bird Feeders

We are also talking about maybe bringing in a landscape company to fix the ratty mess that is our lawns. We’ll see.

First of the Season

I was sitting in the bathroom a minute ago (TMI) when something outside caught my eye. I looked out into the woods and there she was. My first deer sighting of the season! A few seconds later, hey there’s another one! No antlers, so either they are both female or they have already shed. Who knows.

They were way too deep in the trees to think about grabbing a photo, but it’s enough for me to know they are out there. Happy Fall, deer.