. . . . . . . The Daily Blarf

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Rt. 81 northbound, south of Watertown, 3:30 am: one semi right ahead of me. another passing me on the left. and i just woke up.

as i awoke, i freaked, frantically grabbed the wheel, slammed on the brakes, and prepared for the impact of a relatively small Ford Explorer rear-ending a tractor trailer at 70 mph. my first thought was, "I FINALLY DID IT, I FELL ASLEEP DRIVING SHIT SHIT SHIT SHIT SHIT SHIT!!!" would the air bag go off? would i get hurt? killed? lose my new job? end up in a lawsuit? end up in the ditch, bleeding and hurt? "JEEZUS, HOW LONG IS IT GONNA TAKE TO STOP??" i couldn't punch the brakes hard enough.

it was all over in a second.

the semi that was passing me went on by. the semi ahead of me was stopped. so was i.

i hadn't even been moving.

i had been so freakin' tired that i didn't even remember pulling over into the rest area. i had parked behind a semi that was idling, as they usually do. my explorer was still running, too, to keep the A/C on. my headlights were still on. and the truck passing--he was doing about 5 mph on his way back out onto the highway. so when i woke up, i saw that: 1. my car was running, with dashboard and headlights aglow, and 2. the truck ahead of me had it's lights on and was going the same speed as me (this much was true--0 mph), and 3. the truck passing looked like it was going a few mph faster than me (which it was), and 4. the whole goddamn scenario looked exactly as it would have at 70 mph on the highway with my tired ass asleep at the wheel.

holy crap, that was scary. i thought i was gonna end up in a bag. i fell right back asleep though, so it was all just ducky.

Bug the Goat's Tip o' the Day:


Sunday, September 11, 2005

and now another loss.

The Gome, 1982-2005.


On that somber note, onward to your regularly scheduled blarf:

the Saga of the Skunk

I hate skunks. they freaking stink and serve no purpose but to stink up the highways on hot summer days with their flattened, rotten, stinking, roadkilled bodies.

and they hang out where they are not wanted and stink up the works.

that's what happened at our place. there's been this skunky musk seeping into the house for several weeks now (perhaps seeping in isn't the term, but rather pouring in.) and of course, the recent heat wave only made it worse because of open windows and the smellpower multiplying by one million with every degree of temperature. so i finally got fed up with it and got out the Havahart trap.

i tried to do the same thing with a bastard of a raccoon about a month ago. this raccoon was tearing up potted plants on the porch searching for who knows what, so i set up the trap to catch him. it turned out to be a world-record coon; my guess was it was as big as a thanksgiving turkey. he was so fat he could hardly squeeze his rear into the trap to eat the cat food i used for bait. i tried to catch the sucker for 3 days, and every day, he'd get in there, pig out, and bust loose. i saw him in the trap one time, and when i came back to evict him from the property, he had up and vamoosed. not only was he fat, but he was also body builder apparently--somehow he managed to squeeze out of the trap 3 times by bending the shit out of the metal door. i suppose after the third time, he decided it wasn't worth all the effort for a couple handfuls of crappy Agway cat food, so he never came back. he must have gotten sick of the harassment in general and split, cuz we never saw him again after that. case closed.

i digress.

so anyway, the skunk problem. i'd been avoiding using the trap for a while because obviously, you do have to get within skunk-spraying range to move the trap and release the little bugger. but the only other alternative was to trap it and then blow it away with a rifle while it was in the trap, which was not appealing. or, i could stay up all night in sniper-mode and pluck him off in the darkness like i was hunting Charlie in Vietnam. that, too, was not a viable option. so i bit the bullet and set the trap.

for bait, i used a peanut butter sandwich, cuz everybody knows that skunks go apeshit for peanut butter sandwiches. they are often seen in the wild spreading Skippy on toast. i set up the trap in the backyard by the deck. if you've used a Havahart before, you know you have to jimmy it and frig with it to set it just right. i set it with a hair frigging trigger so not to have my PB & bread get eaten without the trap door slamming shut. i set the trap right around dusk, and the first time i checked it around 10:30 that night, i had my victim.

hell, i wasn't even sure i'd catch anything more than the family cat, but sure enough, there was a little black and white stink bomb in there and my sandwich was nowhere to be seen. the question at that point was, what the hell do i do now?

i remember seeing an episode of mythbusters on the discovery channel where jamie and adam attempted to get sprayed by a skunk on purpose, for what reason i don't remember. they did have some difficulty getting sprayed, even when they put the skunk in the bathroom and harassed it for, like, 2 hours, not once getting sprayed by the apathetic skunk. so i was thinking it's not as easy to get nailed by a skunk as it may seem. nonetheless, i was not about to simply pick this thing up and carry it to a release site. so i found an old fleabitten foam mattress pad, flopped it over the trap, and cut a hole thru it for the trap handle. i then put it in the back of my truck. it was then that i discovered my truck's battery was flat, so i used my dad's truck--an even better idea--it would stink up someone else's truck instead! but the skunk was suprisingly chill during the whole procedure and didn't so much as fart the whole time he was in my posession. it was then that i learned that Disney had it right on with Flower in Bambi--quiet, slow, cautious, and bashful as all hell. this was no Pepe LePew.

i drove down the road looking for a suitable skunk-dumping ground. it was then that i got to thinking how handy it would have been to have a skunk in a trap back during my college days. the possibilities would have been endless, with the best idea being setting it loose during our rival fraternity's semiformal dance or something like that. but alas, the idea never struck me to catch the dumpster-dwellering stinkmongers at the time.

i went on up the road a few miles to a deserted area that looked good. at first, he didn't want to come out, even when shaking the cage like a christmas present. i got a bit braver at that point and got down to look him eye to eye and it turns out skunks are actually cute little buggers after all. and i'd never heard a skunk talk before either, except in the movies. this one spoke with a mouse-like squeak. i ended up opening both doors and, finally, with extreme skunk-like caution, he ambled out and waddled off thru the ditch and to the field. apparently, a skunk at high speed is like a leasurely walk for other rodents, or maybe he just didn't care to hurry. at any rate, i was then done with skunks for the night. or so i thought.

i decided to set the trap again in case there was a skunk tenement under the patio. and sure enough, a short time later, i had yet another skunk caught with another sandwich. this one must have been the first one's girlfriend, as she was more petite and had only taken a few dainty bites of peanut butter. she was just as easygoing as the first, and in no time, had her out by the road where i'd released skunk #1. she didn't want to leave, either:

Skunkthink: hmm, both trap doors are open. freedom awaits me. but wait! there's more peanut butter! mmmm...peanu--*BANG*BANG*BANG* GET THE HELL OUTTA THERE, SKUNK! LETS GO!"

she finally walked out of the cage with extreme apathy and regret and headed for the field, i assume to find her male friend. not once did i get sprayed during the whole ordeal. not even a whiff of stink.

and yes, of course, i set the trap again, but i haven't caught any more yet. i guess i learned that skunks aren't so bad after all, and more importantly, they LOVE peanut butter sammiches.

Skunk Tally: 1 2 3 4 !!! (and counting)