Awhile back Max and me had tried to make a pet out of a bobcat. That did not turn out well for us. After it tore up Max’s kitchen and jumped out the window it disappeared. The fact that it disappeared was a tragedy, the fact that we were band from bringing home pets was also a problem.
After all we were growing boys in the middle of the boondocks and pets were a way of life. The fact that we could not collect pets was just too much for our sensible sensibilities. But being the bright, not according to our moms, intelligent, not according to our teachers, enterprising young men that we were we figured they would understand if we just happened to accidently bring home another pet.
We had not seriously thought about a new pet project for a while now, but we were definitely feeling the need to have a cute little animal around. Something that would follow us around like Lassie did for Timmy, keeping us out of trouble, intervening for us by telling our moms that whatever had happened was not our fault, it was Ken’s or Gargoyles fault. You know just a good all around pet that would stand up for us and blame Ken or the Gargoyle for everything that happened. You remember Ken, the boyfriend of Barbie, that we had found hanging out with Raggedy Ann. He had been after us every since that incident, boy can he hold a grudge.
Anyway it was the middle of winter and let me tell you it was cold, it was so cold that when you looked up the word cold in the dictionary it had a picture of where Max and me lived. It was exceptional cold this year and you wanted to avoid letting a windy, fart for you city slickers, escape you while outside.
When this happened it froze instantaneously, you know really, really quickly, at which point you had to run to the nearest outhouse and get your pants pulled down and let it drop out where it would fall to the floor and shatter in little pieces like glass hitting the floor. There it would wait for a little heat to thaw it out. At which time it would release the most odorous aroma imaginable. Frozen farts are more potent than just your everyday garden variety; they have been compared to tear gas that has gone bad and been mixed with a really rotten egg. You definitely wanted to get rid of one in the outhouse.
If for some reason you ran in the house to get it out of your pants, as soon as it dropped and hit the floor it would shatter like glass and because of the warmth of the house it would melt instantly. Not good, frozen farts have been known to empty our entire buildings when they thawed, big buildings, so if you were in a house filled with people when this happened then everybody would have to evacuate which in the middle of winter did not endear you to them.
So anyway we were out looking around for whatever we could find to do. Typical boy stuff, walking around kicking frozen cow turds to see how far they would go, course every once in awhile we would find one still attached to the ground which meant our toes would be driven back to our heels or the worse would be to find one that was not frozen but almost fresh, which meant that it was not long before we were splattered with fresh frozen cow turds and all the wonderful odors that went with it.
While we were happily kicking along we kicked one that we noticed didn’t look like the others. In fact it was black and white and made of fur. We looked closer and it was a SKUNK. After we landed from our sudden flight we looked at it again, it wasn’t moving we approached it slowly and tapped it again. It still never moved, it most of been frozen.
FLASH, I had a think, remember thinks are like thoughts only brighter, this was our chance we could take it home and let it sit around like the real thing, showing we could have a pet with no problems. So we picked it up and tucked it under an arm and marched off, happy as if we had brains which everybody was wondering about also.
We got back to the Max’s house which is where I was spending the night. He had a bunk house where we would sleep, even had a stove to keep us warm. We left the skunk outside while we went in for supper, no sense of showing them we were pet able yet. Even if was a frozen dead one.
We finished up and headed out to the bunk house for the night taking our frozen pet with us. We got in the bunk house and it was toasty warm, we had got the wood stove going before eating. We sat the skunk on the floor by the door when we came in. We sat around a while planning or should I say plotting tomorrows activities. We finally called it quits and crawled into bed.
We had been asleep for what seemed like hours when I heard something. I opened my eyes and found myself looking into the two little biddy black eyes behind a black nose and divided by a white stripe, oh huh, our frozen DEAD skunk was walking around and now looking me in the eye.
Looking me in the eye?
LOOKING ME IN THE EYE!!!!!!!!!
I let out a blood curdling scream; in fact it was such a good scream it put those girls in the slasher movies to shame, like they were still in scream school. Max jumped up screaming too, not knowing what he was screaming at but had to join in anyway. He then looked over and seen the business end of the skunk looking our way with the tail raised, he redoubled his scream pitch at that point.
We both were backed up against the wall and when I seen that tail raised I turned around and started digging a hole through the wall like it was butter, but it didn’t matter, we were had, but just a matter of when he was going to blast us with both barrels. We regained our wits, which for us was a miracle all in itself, and we seen the window beside the bed. We jumped through it even though it was closed at the time and we were outta there.
We ran around the front of bunk house just as Max’s dad got there and opened the door to see what we were yelling at. Before we could stop him he opened the door and got a blast from the thoroughly upset and frightened skunk as he ran out the door, stopping long enough to blast Max’s dad.
He looked at us and it was not the look of a happy camper. He headed for the house where Max’s mom was waiting she was going to say something, took one sniff instead and shut the door and refused to let him in.
It looked like he would be staying in the bunk house for a while which did not bode well for Max and myself. Naturally there was nothing we could say that would help us; it was guilt by just being in possession of the skunk. It wasn’t our fault that the thing wasn’t frozen solid. It looked like it to us.
Anyway it looked like it was going to be a long, long, long time before we would be able to convince anyone that we really could have a pet.