Possums. I know a whole lot more about them than I used to. . .
My phone rang about midnight….
“Cole, where are you? Are you ok?”
(picturing the same scenario all mom’s picture)
“Mom, I’m fine. I’m behind the garage.”
“Good. Why are you behind the garage?”
“Well, when I opened the garage door a possum ran in the garage.”
(You Have GOT TO BE KIDDING ME)
“Possum. Please come out here.”
(Don’t you just hate kids, sometimes?)
“There is an possum in our garage and I want you to get him out.”
(Do I look like a possum whisperer?)
“Cole, just pull in the garage. Close the garage door, but leave the side door open so the poor thing can escape after you turn the light off.”
“No? Ok. Leave the light on.”
“Mom, I don’t know where that possum is and I don’t want it to leap out at me. I want you to come out.”
(Uhm, I don’t want it to leap on me either!)
“Cole, possums don’t leap.”
“How do you know they don’t leap?”
(I always trusted my mother unconditionally, where did I go wrong?)
“I’m your mother. I would not suggest you leave your car if I thought a possum would leap out at you.”
(Kid is not buying it)
“I’ll just park in front of the house tonight.”
Our neighborhood has had a number of car break-ins over the last few weeks, and I did not want to take any chances with Cole’s car so I agreed to go out to the garage. But first I had to make sure it was a possum.
“Cole, have you ever seen an possum?”
(the correct answer is NEVER)
“Then how do you know it’s a possum and not a rat?”
“Mom, what difference does it make? I don’t want a rat to leap on me either…”
(I’m 16! It’s all about ME)
“Cole, you know I’m terrified of rats. Tell me what the critter looked like.”
Cole described the critter and I was reasonable sure it was not a rat. So, using dearly departed Joe’s name in vain, I picked up my poker and my trusty BBQ grill (you may remember these item from when I took on Devil Dog) and walked out to the garage. Just as I was opening the back gate, a damn mouse jumped out and I let out a string of creative curse words.
Concerned but still in the car, Cole yells from the window, “MOM, DID YOU GET THE POSSUM?”
(Yes–I just drove my poker through his heart and now I’m swinging him over my head by the tail, getting ready to send him sailing into the great beyond)
“No honey, not yet.”
Looking around the garage I didn’t see a possum lurking anywhere so I insisted Cole back the car into the garage while I watched to make sure the hiding possum didn’t run under the car. I didn’t want the possum in my garage, dead or alive. Next, I talked Cole out of the car by showing him my poker, grill shield and by growling fiercely. Together we ran back to the house, naturally Cole lead the way.
Back inside, Rascal (our Jack Russell), eager to make sure her brother was safe, greeted him with a cold nose ankle sniff, and sent my boy to the ceiling. Yes, I laughed…and laughed…and am still laughing. Cole was less amused.
The possum was never spotted, so we’re pretty sure he made it out of the garage.
It’s possumible that one day you too might encounter a possum, so let me share a few facts with you.
- Possums are about the size of a cat; grey to black fur, black eyes; pink nose, feet and tail; black ears; and pointed nose.
- They don’t travel in packs but are solitary and nocturnal: usually slow moving; and when they are unable to defend themselves they “play ‘possum”.
- Hissing and growling while showing off there 50 sharp teeth is how they encourage you to GO AWAY when they are frightened but, in reality, they are gentle and placid and want to avoid confrontation. At least that’s their story and they are sticking to it.
Watch this short video (Thank You Nancy Leahy) for a little more information.
Several friends have said they could never in a million years go out to the garage to confront a possum, so I asked them what there alternative would have been. They just looked at me, clueless. Ya right. I am Mom; hear me roar.