Total Pageviews

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Knowing Our Place

Nature, like our cats, abhors a vacuum.

We devote a large percentage of our time at the Drainfield of Dreams to putting nature in what we think is its place. Nature devotes one hundred percent of its time to ignoring us.

Our neighbors call me at work: "Did you know there are deer standing on your front porch?"

"That would explain the nose prints on the glass door," I reply. "I was worried the neighbor kid had an allergy attack while selling candy for the band trip to Kyrgyzstan."

"They're looking into your house," the neighbor continues. "Well," I say, "if they ring the doorbell with their little hooves they'll be disappointed. There's no one home to let them in to inspect the vegetable crisper."

By contrast, the raccoons have no interest in the interior of the house.  They lumber past the sliding glass door while we’re eating dinner, drawn to the pond like furry heat-seeking missiles. While we're watching "So You Think You Can Dance," the raccoons industriously yank every one of my husband's carefully-tended waterlillies onto the patio.

In an effort to keep the nocturnal masked bandits at bay my spousal unit just bought the Rac Zapper 3000. He’s eagerly awaiting midnight “zzzzzzzt” sounds followed by the pitter-patter of little feet scurrying back through the gap in the fence. I don't want to burst his bubble but I'm skeptical.  Any animals that smart who don't have to spend their days worrying about mortgages or status meetings are bound to figure out how to circumvent an electric fence.

Some creatures do make it inside the house. We used to let the cats out through a kitty door until we discovered that the territory they were willing to defend was approximately the living room. Taking the Neville Chamberlain approach to diplomatic relations, our cats achieved peace in their time by ceding the rest of the house and yard, cowering under the coffee table while feline interlopers devoured half our paychecks' worth of cat crunchies.

Years ago at a friend’s house I saw a poster entitled “Thermodynamics Made Easy.” It had three bullet points:
“The First Law of Thermodynamics: You Can’t Win.
The Second Law: You Can’t Break Even.
The Third Law: You Can’t Stop Playing the Game."

All of which apply to keeping nature in its place.

No comments:

Post a Comment