Sunday, February 27, 2011


On the bulletin board in my mental post office I have a huge WANTED! poster with a couple dozen monkey mafia mug shots on it, you can jail any one of them if you can find them (they blend right in); they’re all on the lam from one Brady job or another.

I don’t yet have a wanted poster up for bears, which surprises me, from what I’ve been hearing about bears not far from here, but bears aren’t a bother to me, at least not yet, so there isn’t a bear poster. There is room for one, but I’m generally content with bear preferences for acorns, grubs and berries.

I don’t have a poster up for wild pigs either, which surprises me even more, because I’ve seen them go after the rice in these parts and everything else in other parts of the world, even uprooting lawns in some places to get earthworms, but I don’t have a lawn; maybe that’s why the porkers don’t bother me. Yet they don’t want free fresh potatoes, tomatoes, squashes, cucumbers? Not that I’m offering, but it is another of the natural puzzles that seem to be burgeoning everywhere these days. Let the dear bristly creatures enjoy their acorns and wild yams or whatever.

Still, it seems somehow unnatural, and worries the greenness in me. I’m pretty green when it comes to most things, especially being Irish and all. Regarding plants and creatures I say live and let live, except again for the local monkeys. That’s where I turn from green to red. Most folks who don’t live around here and get their vegs at the supermarket LOVE monkeys, those dear furry creatures on tv and in the zoo, so cute and suitably distant there in the magazine or on the net in the hot spring, aren’t they adorable they’re so human!

I have no rabbits as pests either, though rabbits have always in my mind been notorious, gardenwise, ever since Peter. I’ve seen one or two of the hoppies around here in 15 years, so they are in the vicinity, but they seem to be very old-time Japanesey and prefer their original native diet, though the younger rabbits might start going for the easy food available in my garden, you never know when it comes to animals-- they evolve.

But I always trusted the deer...sniff, sniff...Santa has deer... At least, once I’d put up my garden fence to protect among other things my spinach and green onions, after which the deer just went around munching wild herbs and acorns, but then I spotted the Baron himself, the symbol of noble integrity with his crown of antlers, lowering his regal head to filch my shiitake, scarfing them like a king in a pastry kitchen.

Today, in response to severe nocturnal nibbling of some new shiitake buds by ruminant teeth and I don’t mean cows, as I was moving some of my older shiitake logs inside the garden fence and rigging a pro tem net on poles over the bigger, newer logs, I was mentally designing my DEER WANTED poster, I have the mental mugshot of the noble countenance posing before being booked, one hoof holding up the little black personal data plaque, full-face and profile, looking so innocent - Don’t smile please, look straight into the camera...

I wouldn’t press charges, you understand, I don’t want the Baron to actually go to jail, maybe just some sort of mushroom restraining order. The monkeys you can throw the book at, though that has no effect, I’ve tried. Rocks don’t work either, for the long term. I know they were all here first, but I was here second and I had a loan from a bank. If that’s not legitimate I don’t now what is.

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