Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Critters Gone Wild – Wooo, partay!

Howard Wolowitz

“I’m a horny engineer, Leonard. I never joke about math or sex.”

~~Howard Wolowitz

That photo and quote has nothing to do with this entry. We were watching "The Big Bang Theory" last night, and that was something that Howard (played by Simon Helberg) said to Leonard. It made me laugh so hard that I had to write it down. I liked that show from the beginning, but it’s gotten better and better as we get to know the characters a little more.

Guess who's coming to town to join in the Notre Dame fracas? Alan Keyes. Oh, goody. And Randall Terry has issued a statement criticizing Bishop D'Arcy's urging that everyone refrain from protesting on graduation day, and said that he (Terry) and his followers minions will respectfully not obey the Bishop's request. That guy is such a charmer!

It's still chilly today, but it's getting to be that time of year here at Nutwood when the young critter's thoughts turn to figuring out how much mischief can be made, and how much havoc can be wreaked. (All pictures are from previous years--I haven't had a chance to get any good ones yet this year.)

Raccoon2 A couple of nights ago, after Ken had gone to bed, I heard a little noise from out on the deck. I flipped on the light, and a raccoon was up on the deck railing, holding on to the seed feeder and chowing down. He just looked at me, and didn't move until I started to walk out there. They are so bold! He ran off, but when I got up in the morning, the feeder was empty (and I had just filled it the day before, doggone it). Ken had sent me an email and said that when he got up, the raccoon was out there with the feeder in his "grubby little paws," and he'd popped him with the BB gun a couple of times. (It doesn't hurt them, just scares them off...temporarily.)

Last night, I heard another little noise, flipped on the light, and there was Rocky again. But get this--the little bugger doesn't run off. No, he walks over to the door, sits there, and looks up at me! I crouched down, and he just stared at me for a moment. Then I realized that there was a second one right there, and he was looking at me, too. They finally went about their business--after all, the seed feeder was empty!--and I just shook my head. I'm just not sure how to keep them off of the deck, and no, we won't kill them. I tried that hot pepper spray a couple of years ago, the stuff that doesn't harm the birds, but squirrels and raccoons hate the taste. I looked out one evening, and a raccoon was standing there licking the stuff off of the deck railing. [sigh]

Groundy During the afternoon yesterday, I kept hearing an odd noise, almost a thump. At first I thought it was coming from one of the neighbor's, but I kept hearing it, and it really did sound close. Sheeba was on my lap, and he perked up and ran over to the window, so he heard it, too. I looked out the front window and couldn't see anything. I went into the office and looked out that window--all clear. I wondered if it was a branch on the roof or something, or if something was up in the attic, but it sounded like it was coming from the front of the house. Sheeba put his little paws up on the front door and looked out the oval window, so I thought I'd give that a try. I didn't see anything on the front deck...but then I looked down, and Groundy (our resident groundhog, now out of hibernation) was crouched on the doormat, grabbing it in his teeth ("Grrr!) and letting it drop. That was the thumping I was hearing--the doormat dropping back down onto the deck. He was really going after it, and I'm not sure why. Maybe he thought Matt had insulted him. I opened the front door real quick and said "HEY!" and he was off like a shot, back to his hidey-hole under the deck walkway. Which is sinking, thanks to Groundy's digging habits.

I love our critters, but sometimes they try my patience! I throw food out for them, we don't kill them, although many people around here do, and they have much territory here in which to roam. I do and do and do for these critters, and this is the thanks I get! Raccoons taking seed out of the mouths of hungry birds and the groundhog attacking our welcome mat. ("Grrr!") It's a thankless job, I tell ya.


  1. I used to date a horny structural engineer so I find that quote hilarious.

    Respectfully not obey~ sounds a little like when someone tells a child: This is going to hurt me more than it does you, but I am doing it for your own good (total bs). Terry is staggeringly irrelevant to me. I have a feeling if someone else "decided" to repectfully not obey the Bishop in some other situation, Mr Terry would be appalled. ~Mary

  2. HOWARD ... I referenced him in my journal today, but used the wrong name. 'Big Bang' has been one of my fave shows since it started. If '24' wasn't so good this season, I would not have to change the channel until 11 o'clock!

    For real, I thought of you and Ken when I heard that line! There were a couple of more that were pretty good as well. When he and Leonard were at the bar, and he described the 'pecking order', I was laughing so hard!

    That is why I meant to say, 'I am a brave Howard'... don't know what I called him!

    Man ... Alan Keyes? Talk about an opportunist! Making believe he has a reason to be there, make some noise I guess.

  3. LOL I love hearing about all your critter stories...

    Hubby just read it too. He said, "Tell Beth try nursing a baby squirrel back to health & then it runs away without even a thank you." LOL

  4. Not certain about the horny engineer but its fascinating how wildlife quickly adapt to whatever challenges we set them.

    Andy xx

  5. I struggle with racoons and possums, but I've never had a ground hog- that's a new one!

  6. Hi Beth,
    Hmmm ... those critters ... can't live with 'em, can't live without 'em. I wouldn't be surprised if one of these days a racoon opened your door, waltzed into your kitchen and helped himself.

  7. You might as well prepare to stay frustrated. You cannot win over those little beasties when you put bird seed out. I finally gave up one year and put corn cobs out along the edge of the property. It kept the bird feeders safe for about 10 minutes...lol.
    Hugs, Joyce

  8. LOVE that show. Sheldon is my favorite.

    We too use a bb gun when we have to. I used it on myself first to make sure it wouldn't harm the animals. I figure, if I'm going to shoot something with it, I better know what kind of damage it can do first. (is it any wonder why we don't own a REAL gun???) It just left a small red mark on my leg and wasn't very painful, just startling. We don't usually see the racoons here, but we HEAR them constantly. I know they've tried getting in the cat enclosure several times but I put several locks on that sucker to keep them out. The cats are unimpressed with them and wouldn't bat an eye if they just walked right up and started eating with them. BTW, Groundy was looking for a new welcome mat for his hole, he just couldn't figure out how to get it under the deck. ;) Our yard looks like hell due to the moles. They don't do much of the damage, it's the damned dogs digging to china to catch the bastards. But like you, I won't kill them.

  9. Throw marshmallows out for the raccoons...they LOVE 'em. and dry cat food. We used to have a critter collection at the Florida house. I liked the raccoons, but the possums, eh....they're kinda creepy.

  10. That would be neat to have them come up so close, well neat to see, but not neat to have to deal with sometimes! We don't get critters that come th at close to the house that often. Linda

  11. I know of some who believe ground hogs are extremely destructive animals. They kill them on purpose to save the land. You sure have alot of nosy pesks! I have never heard of that show before. Look in your snail mail for something i sent today.

  12. Racoons are so cute, although they could tone down the eyeliner a bit!

  13. Hey, engineers have needs to :o)

    Maybe Matt and Remo should get together.

  14. I love Howard Wolowitz. I was married to an engineer for 35 years. A laugh a minute. Or something.

    As for groundhogs....first they eat the door mat. Then they eat the door. Just a word of caution. :-)

  15. I do think that eating the doormat is a bit bold. They need to be made to understaND YOU ARE IN CHARGE. Not sure how I would go about it.

  16. Ok, I've got raccoons that like to steal dog food and occasionally run around on my roof making me think there's someone trying to break in at night.......however......I don't have any groundhogs! Nope, none. I don't even think they reside in Idaho anywhere. So now I'm jealous. Maybe he was thinking about moving your welcome mat to his home. Spruce his place up, ya know...

  17. Love that show, but usually forget when it's on!

  18. The Big Bang Theory is one of my FAV shows, If I weren't gay AND married I'd manage a crush on Sheldon ROFL. They make me smile and laugh my butt off.
    About the critters? we have the same thing here, just no ground hog tho. We have coyotes ew ew ew ~ I'm terrified one will attack the boys when I take them out potty at night. They go after the baby calfs and foals around here so (i mentioned this before) the ranchers put donkeys in there with them...the donkeys will kill a coyote. Ok, before I seem senile I'm going now. Hugs** Teresa

  19. We are plagues with coons, opossums and every other creature of the night too - try putting a plastic owl around the feeders. Sometimes it works but they do get wise to it after time so moving it helps as well. Sooooooooooo relieved to hear you won't kill them. We have had a whole family of coons on our deck already, mama and 3 babies ~ it was pretty cool to watch the kids play.


I'm funny how, I mean funny like I'm a clown, I amuse you?