Friday, September 4, 2009

An unwelcome homecoming

Seeing as I finally got some time off from work, I decided to head over to my parents' house for some much needed alone time. My parents wouldn't be coming home until the weekend, so I had two days all to myself.

After an hour-long drive in the heat that won't seem to go away, I pulled up to that oh so familiar driveway. I bid the remote to open the garage door. I begin to slowly drive in. But I stop. Something is wrong.

There is a bit of a mess. Stuff has been knocked down. I drive in an inch more, but once again come to a sudden stop.

I see a shape on the ground. There is something in front of the door leading into the house. My mind races with ideas as to what the shape is, but I can't quite discern its identity. I have a feeling I know what it is, but I really don't want to be right. I take off my sunglasses to get a better look at the unidentified object. Then my suspicions are confirmed.

It's an animal. It had yet to move, but I was still unsure that it was actually dead. I finally turn off the car, but still don't want to get out of the vehicle. Like I said, the animal could just be sleeping.

I eventually get out of my car. The animal blocking the entrance to my house is... er, was an opossum. A juvenile opossum, to be exact. It looked dead. But what to do? I did what any 24 year old man would do in this situation.

"Mom! There's a dead animal in the garage!"
"What? How do you know?"
"I'm looking at it!"
"Well, how did it get in?"
"How should I know? I don't live here."
"Just pick it up with something and dispose of it."
"Are you insane!? I'm not touching it! What if it isn't really dead? What if it's just... umm... playing 'possum?"
"Throw something at it."

I throw some balled up napkins at the opossum. Nothing.

"It didn't move."
"Then it's dead."
"But what if it's really good at pretending it's dead?"
"Oh just pick it up with a broom or something and get rid of it."
"Can't I just leave it here for you to dispose of it?"
"You are NOT leaving that carcass in my garage! Now man up and dispose of the giant rat."

I hang up the phone and stare at the dead body before me. I must have stood there for at least 10 minutes before actually doing something. Finally, testosterone returns to me and I take action. I grab a broom and prepare to transport the dead animal to the garbage. But first I poke it a few times just to make sure it is really dead.

After several pokes I conclude that the opossum is definitely not going to suddenly rise to its feet and viciously attack me. I take the broom and carefully try to slide it under the body. Unfortunately, it doesn't go as smoothly as I would have liked. I continuously drop the opossum and toss it around. I find myself apologizing incessantly to the dead body.

"So sorry."
"Oops! Sorry!"
"Oh god, I'm sorry."
"Ack! Sorry."

After what seemed like an eternity I manage to dump the body into our garbage. My dark deed was at last complete and I could put it behind me.

I confess that a large part of me was tempted to merely back out of the garage, walk into the house through the front door, and pretend that there was not a rotting corpse in my garage. I could easily have left the body for my parents deal with. I was certainly tempted.

At least now I have an interesting story to tell my co-workers.....


- R


  1. You threw napkins at it? Haha.

    Seriously, though. You were much braver than I would have been. There's no way I would have disposed of that thing myself.

  2. I wouldn't exactly call myself brave. I must have stood there for at least 15 minutes before actually doing anything. I just kept staring at the giant dead rat.

    *shudder* I can still see it in my mind. It was traumatic, I say!

  3. Sidenote-- Am nearly done with the bully letter I've owed you for some time. Didn't think I would encounter such a big creative block with this subject.

  4. aaaawwwww, a dead possum?! wonder how long it was in there trying to get out. :(

  5. I must admit, as freaked and grossed out I was by the dead opossum, I did feel bad for it. I would hate to die of food/water deprivation and heat exhaustion. On the other hand... I was relieved to not have come home to an angry (and hungry) giant rat.