What the possum loves

Husband is haunted. Haunted by possums.

In college, he lived with several roommates and a couple of cats in an old, rambling house near Shoal Creek. For a while, he had suspected that a little visitor had found its way to the gravy train through the hole in the pantry floor – a visitor the cats weren’t willing to tangle with. One afternoon, Husband came home after class and heard a little noise coming from the pantry. A possum! Bellied up to the kibble buffet!

When the critter realized that Husband had a bead on him, he did what possums do. Played dead. Not fooled by this ruse, Husband grabbed a broomstick and commenced to chasing the intruder out of his house! The beast only ran further in toward Husband’s room, which gave him the opportunity to grab his shotgun. With the broom and a lot of cussing, he managed to chase the animal out the door where it ran up a tree, Husband hot on its furry little heels.

"Playing Possum" Photo from Wikipedia

But as he ran down from the porch, Husband twisted his ankle, nearly breaking it. Looking up, he saw the possum watching him from a hole in the tree, smirking. Just then a loud, old clunker drove by and BOOM!! No more possum. That weekend, Husband limped all over Atlanta for the SEC Championship game, the possum still with him in every painful step.

Now, nearly twenty years later, the curse is upon him again. Lately, in the evenings, if we turn on the porch light we’ve seen a furry, white bullet go shooting down the front steps while our old yella cat cowers in the bushes. Well, this morning, Husband went out to put the trash in the garbage can and, lo and behold, reckon what was holed up down in the bottom of the bin? Mr. Possum. Husband, calmed (somewhat) by age and experience and not wanting to risk another grievous injury or arrest for firing a gun within the city limits, flung the can across the driveway and turned the water hose on the little squatter, which is one of the few ways to rouse a possum from the “dead.”

Now the thing is hemmed up under our deck, waiting for dark to make its escape into the woods. Or will it. I’ll bet it will be right back on our porch tonight. You see, there is something that the possum cannot resist. It is more alluring than a pheromone, more seductive than a pretty girl possum, it’s siren song undeniable.

What is this obsession? Cat food. Delicious, nutritious, and free for the taking on every porch where cats are fed.

A notorious loner and scavenger, this possum will do as any other drifter will. Once the free vittles are removed, he’ll move on down the line to the next town where the grass is greener and kibble is crunchier. And our feline friend Flash will just have to adjust to the dinner bell ringing a little earlier.

The curse is hereby lifted.

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