The Fox in the Garage Part 7: This Isn’t Ponderosa, People

July 6, 2010

The fox in the garage is asking for it. He’s asking for it now more than ever before. He’s been leaving bits of hose around the litterbox, just to taunt me. He puts the bits in small piles. Maybe it’s his way of telling me he’s not just a dumb animal and that he has brains. But he probably is just a dumb animal. A dumb animal that knows how to put things in piles. The worst thing he does is whine at night. Every time he starts with it I’m thinking, Hey fox, if you don’t like it here, leave. You can’t camp out in a person’s garage, chew their hoses like nobody’s business and then whine all night. The fox is like people in that way, always finding something to complain about. Get all you can get and then complain that nothing is good enough. That’s the American way. That was one of Grandma’s favorite lines. If I’d bitch about not getting something, like when all the free cookies at Kroger’s bakery had been taken, Grandma would say, complain all you want, this is America, after all. If whining is American, then the fox is as American as a stubbed toe.

I cannot believe how much folks complain at Burger King if one small thing is messed up. Like if they ask for no cheese on their Whopper but they get cheese. Here is a message for everyone that comes to my Burger King: This isn’t Ponderosa, people. You can’t bitch about a three-dollar cheeseburger. Eat the cheese and be thankful you didn’t get blown up on the way to work today.

Effing Terrence has been nibbling on those hose bits. What a fool. A damned adorable fool. I say, Terrence, cut it out. Those are covered in fox spit, and you don’t know where the fox’s mouth has been. That fox could have rabies or fox herpes or something. Terrence has been doing other strange stuff, too. When I fill up his food bowl he’ll take one bite and then walk around the garage and then come back and take another bite. He’s also been pooping a lot. At least three times a day. I don’t know if he’s actually sick or if living out here is giving him the nervous poops. It’s certainly been giving me the nervous poops.

Yesterday I woke up to a terrifying scene. Terrence was still asleep, all curled up next to the litterbox like an angel. And who do you think was sleeping right next to him? The fox. The enemy was practically spooning my angelbaby. I could’ve died. The fox was curled up, too. His goddamned tail was overlapping Terrence’s tail. I wanted to scream bloody murder but that could’ve awoken the fox and sent him into a murderous rampage. So I kept my cool. I knew I needed to wake up Terrence and bring him out of the garage without waking the fox. So I got on all fours and crawled over to them. I tickled Terrence’s ear, and he woke up but quickly went back to sleep. I whispered, Terrence, Terrence. You’re next to the fox, for Chrissakes. Get up. He opened an eye and turned around and looked right at that bastard fox, and get this: he didn’t even care. Terrence looked right at the fox and he didn’t budge. He’s such a layabout sometimes. And it’s OK to be layabout sometimes, but not when your life is on the line. The fox could’ve been clawing Terrence’s eyes out and Terrence would’ve made his paws into the letter W and said, Whatever, I don’t care. It was like they had become friends overnight. I was fed up. I picked him up and held him in my arms and said, You’re sleeping next to me from now on, you know that? You know that, Terrence?

And that’s when the fox woke up.

He got on all fours and stared at me. The fox has black eyes and when you’re staring into them you can see your reflection. People say when you encounter an animal, the animal is more scare of you than you are of it, and that seemed to be the case because the fox looked like he could start crying at any moment. He had crusties in his eyes. His tiny head was shaking. Part of me wanted to find one of those steak knives I’d thrown at him earlier and stab him, and another part of me wanted to cuddle him and take him to the vet and find out what he’s been whining about this whole time. Maybe he’s sick from eating hoses.

You’ve ruined my hoses, I said. You’re adorable, you know that? But you’re asking for it big time.

Terrence hissed, probably because he was jealous of me calling the fox adorable, and the fox ran off.

We didn’t hear him whining that night or the next night. It was nice to sleep in peace. Maybe he’d finally wised up and left the garage for good, I thought. YEAH RIGHT. The following night as we went to bed we heard soft fox moans coming from behind the litterbox. He was back, and he was driving us crazy. Terrence became upset, and I became upset. It’s a sad whine, like: Whee. Whee. Whee. And sometimes: Wooo. Wooo. Maybe he’s hungry, or maybe he’s separated from his family and he’s lonely, or maybe he’s sorry for chewing my hoses and whining is his way of apologizing. Maybe he’s just a baby who needs a mother and he thinks if he whines about it enough, Terrence and I will be his parents. No matter the reason. His whines don’t make me forget about the misery he has caused us and I still feel that his death will be justified.

NEXT: The First Hang At The Other Laundromat



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