Gardening where the sidewalk ends

The Squirrel’s Response January 9, 2009

Filed under: fauna,winter — greenwalks @ 12:36 pm
Tags: , , , ,

Dear Karen of Greenwalks –

I received your missive, dated November 3 of the previous year. I am appalled at your use of such offensive words as “annoying” and “infuriating” to describe my natural, instinctive food-seeking behavior, not to mention that you now “officially hate” me. And I will not even stoop to address your depiction of me as a germ-covered potential  child-sickener.

I think it would be illustrative for you to consider what winter is like for myself and my ilk. Do you think we have cozy Craftsman houses such as your own to cuddle up and stay warm in during the wet and cold months? Oh dear me, no. A bundle of sticks if we’re lucky, and the warmth generated by our own bodies, is all we possess in the way of shelter and comfort.

You begrudge me the occasional tasty chard morsel (nota bene: I prefer white chard to your current selection of Bright Lights, which I find a bit gaudy for my refined visual sensibilities) or nibble on your daughter’s crudely carved Jack-o-Lanterns. I was merely “thinning” your seedlings and making a more expressionist take on what seemed to me to be rather prosaic designs on the pumpkins.

You mention my “million acorns” without having heard, I presume, of the acorn shortage that has inexplicably hit the Eastern US.  I had to systematically, using my GPS, dig up and mail off all I could spare to my cousins on my mother’s side so that they would not starve this winter.

Then, after that irksome letter, you had had the nerve to cover your bulb plantings in a repulsive, stomach-turning concoction of boiled onion and pepper water, topped off with gag-inducing paprika. Really, that almost caused me to seek new feeding grounds. Almost… but then I decided to dig in for the winter and not let you have the last word. And so, I have been scratching this letter on a piece of cedar bark since before the snows came, letter by laborious letter (it’s not easy writing when you have no opposable thumbs, yet another thing you probably disdain me for!).

In closing, let me show you a few pictures from our family album from the past few months. See if it doesn’t pull on your heartstrings to see us out there, huddled against the wintry bleakness. If not, well, you must have no heart whatsoever.

Yours truly,

Ignatius P. Squirrel (known to you, demeaningly, as “Dr. Destructo”)

PS Oh, I know you worked hard with your daughter on that peanut-butter-and-sesame-seed-covered pine cone. It was fun to take it right off your witch hazel tree, whole, before the birds even got a nibble. And even more fun with the two of you there on the other side of the window, watching with your mouths gaping open in shock and horror! Hee hee. It almost repaid you for that odious letter.

PPS You almost gave me a heart attack yesterday when you came up on the front porch so suddenly as I was nibbling away at a forgotten pumpkin. I had to fly right by you, only inches away, tail flailing! Truly humiliating. And that it happened again later in the day, well, it truly almost did me in. I would appreciate if you would be more careful next time and give much better notice of your arrival!

Squirrel in snowpatches

Soggy squirrel

Squirrel huddled in a cammelia

Squirrel atop Radio Flyer red wagon


20 Responses to “The Squirrel’s Response”

  1. Philip Says:

    Dear Ignatius P. Squirrel,
    I hope you enoyed the peanut-butter-and-sesame-seed-covered pine cone!
    I loved your cedar bark note!
    stay warm with those twigs,

    • greenwalks Says:

      Dear Philip – Thank you for your warm wishes. I get a lot of hate mail but you are tops on my list of friendly humans! Cheers, – Ignatius

  2. Michelle Says:

    I do believe Ignatious has been corresponding with the birds in my garden, giving them foraging tips. Oh my, you are too funny. Thanks for a great laugh!

    • greenwalks Says:

      Michelle – You are welcome, happy to oblige when I can. He is quite a good communicator, my Ignatius, so I’m not surprised he is passing on his tips to others. Maybe he has his own blog and circle of commenters?!

  3. Paula Says:

    Looking back at those marks on the pumpkins, I think I know who’s been eating the tops of my beets! During the snows, we regularly had 4 crowding out the birds and at one point had 6 squirrels fussing and eating. Good luck!

    • greenwalks Says:

      Hi Paula – Wow, sounds like you have a whole posse at your place! They can be pretty destructive, but it’s all in the service of survival so it’s hard to really fault them. At least in winter I have a bit more sympathy!

  4. Racquel Says:

    He does have some valid points Karen, lol.

    • greenwalks Says:

      Racquel – Too true. I am trying to see things more from his point of view lately, which is easier in winter when he’s not destroying my garden quite so much.

  5. Catherine Says:

    Dear Uncle Ignatius,
    We like to steal children’s homemade bird feeders too!
    Your Northend cousins

    • greenwalks Says:

      Catherine – Ha! Wonder where they drag them off to? I never do find the remnants. I wonder if there’s a way to squirrel-proof those things?

  6. easygardener Says:

    Ignatius put forward quite a coherent defence. He must also have a lot of acorns if he’s making off with your trailer.
    Mind you I think he made a tactical error with the needlessly taunting PS at the end. That’s squirrels for you – arrogant and dismissive of humans!
    By the way I found an acorn at the bottom of my garden and part of a torn envelope. Worrying (lol)

    • greenwalks Says:

      EG – Yes, he is quite well-versed in rhetoric, that one. Well, I guess he just couldn’t help himself with the taunts – another aspect of his immutable nature. Uh oh, wonder what yours are up to? Are they ransoming something or someone you love?

  7. Georgia Says:

    The beginnings of a series or book…

    • greenwalks Says:

      Hee hee. That squirrel is better than a movie, I see him almost every day and he’s always up to something. Long may he live!

  8. Curmudgeon Says:

    Red is his color! LOL!

    • greenwalks Says:

      Curmudgeon again – Yes, I do think he looks pretty distinguised in that one. I should have mentioned that this photo was taken by the “other blogger” in the family, the one who actually gets paid to write. 🙂

  9. Michele Says:

    What a crack up. You might have to seek some metal health help if this squirrel dialog in your head continues! Ha ha!

    • greenwalks Says:

      Michele – You are right, he could drive me to distraction… actually, lately I just think it’s funny. I was pretty mad about the bulbs last year and the sunflowers this fall, though!

  10. Enlargement Says:

    I am amazed with it. It is a good thing for my research. Thanks

  11. Monica Says:

    Wow, your squirrely friend is eloquent indeed, and makes some good points.

    It’s funny how different people have problems with different animals… For example, I love squirrels but am at odds with a certain rotund groundhog and a whole passel (flock? brood?) of ducks.

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