Thursday, May 10, 2007

Virginia is for...Creatures

Yes, I know it's been a while. More than three weeks, to be precise. But in my defense, I just finished cranking out somewhere around 40,000 words (and not just any words, specific words, strung together in sentences) for our big summer project at work. For some reason, the idea of coming home and cranking out a few more was not inspiring. But I digress.
Yesterday, when I arrived home from work (TGIF, my friends, TGIF) extremely enthusiastic about the prospect of two whole days off, I bounded upstairs to my bedroom to put on my comfortable (read "crappy") clothes. While in the bedroom I noticed a few stacks of books had been knocked over. The fact of the matter is, we have too many books, though I prefer to think that we simply have too few bookshelves, and as a result, many of my books are stacked up against the wall, near a bookcase in our bedroom. I thought "I live with pigs!" which is not fair in this particular case, but whatever. I began to re-stack and straighten up the books when I noticed the cover of one hardback pretty much shredded. I touched the cover, inspecting the damage, when out popped this:

And sure, it looks all cute and stuff here, peeking out of the leaf litter or what have you. But that's really the point, isn't it? THIS ONE'S NOT PEEKING OUT FROM MY BOOKS! It's a skink, btw. I'll admit, I may have involuntarily made a very small, very restrained noise at the site of the thing semi-slithering away from me. As I recall, my first impression was that it looked like a very, very small alligator. At that point, Michael Jackson (my cat, not the king of pop) pounced on it then let it slither away so he could chase it. I panicked. I'll admit it. I ran out the door, slamming it behind me, and locking Michael in with the creature. I'm not proud of it, but that's what happened. I had tried to get him to come with me, but he ignored me, so I had to throw him under the bus.
Once I collected myself, I went back upstairs, swinging a catfood packet madly, trying to lure the cat with the come hither sound of food about to be served. He ignored me completely. So I screwed up my courage, ran into the room, and grabbed Michael Jackson by the scruff, all while shouting "NO MICHAEL JACKSON! NO! NO!" as he flailed. I can only imagine what the neighbors must have thought. I then proceeded to close the bedroom, and stuff a towel in the crack under the door, fully prepared to write that room off forever, if necessary. Then Darren came home, and found the lizard king, after a brief search. Contained in Gladware, he really was quite cute, and I felt very badly about the damage the cats had done. Darren said he thought the little guy would make it, but he pretty much always says that so I won't cry.
And you might think the whole Virginia is for creatures bit is an exaggeration, based on one minor episode, but this is to not even mention the Great Tick Horror of a month or so ago, during which I found TWO of them on me, another on the stairs, one in the bathtub, and one on Darren. The first night I slept with my pajamas tucked into knee-high socks. If you can count being curled up in the fetal position, twitching, with my eyeballs nearly bulging out of my head as sleep. They don't have ticks in Vermont the way they do down here. Or lizards, for that matter. Current score: Vermont: 3; Virginia: 0.

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