White Lightning Axiom: Redux: Lowered boom

Tuesday, June 21, 2005


Lowered boom

There is something I failed to mention from Sunday that I feel that I should confess. I have a little rodent problem. The vorpal rabbit population here in the Haupertonain Empire has recently seen a substantial increase due to an influx of illegal lepus migration. The vermin are a blight on the landscaping. A few years back, I had planted several asters in locations about the front of the Manor. Within 2 years, all but one had been decimated. This year, the last one was assaulted with such ferocity that only a handful of barren stalks remained. Additionally, last year was a tough year for the agricultural sector thanks to these 'forces of nature'. The lowest mammalian member of the food chain has been targeting my peas, lettuce and carrot tops. Just this weekend I lost 5 pea plants, nearly a quarter of one row. The bottoms are chewed off and eaten up to 3 inches from the ground leaving the rest of the vine to wither and the pods to shrivel in the sun. No, this will not stand but there is no bait I could set for the live trap that would entice the varmint more than the succulent growths that are in abundance. I can't really put chicken wire around the perimeter either ... the cost would be mildly prohibitive. My only option is to grin and bear it I suppose.

I reluctantly held this nihilistic belief till I was out in the garden to collect some lettuce for my lunch salad when I spotted him. One foot of vegetation nightmare busily ravaging yet another pea stalk. We eyed each other as my heart beat faster. My hands clutched at the thin metal bowl that I had brought along with me. Perhaps I could trap him under the bowl and release him 30 miles from here. It would take a lifetime for him to ever find his way back. I slowly take a hesitant step ... he moves over to the next row. I move to the next row and edge a bit closer. We repeat our little dance of brinkmanship over and over till we are several rows over. The green bean bushes are his camouflage. I know he is there, I know exactly where he lays in wait for me to depart. No more than 4 feet from me is my agricultural nemesis. The beast that lays waste to the life-giving peas that my children devour with glee. This ends here and now. I launch my attack with lightning speed and ferocity. Sure, a bean stalk or two my be part of the collateral damage. It matters not now. Man against nature. The bowl comes down and the nuisance invader senses impending doom ... too late. It makes a futile attempt to bolt off but becomes trapped by the edge of the inverted canopy of the metal bowl. What should have been a simple dragnet capture has now taken a terrible turn towards the fatal. His fragile, native skull took the full force of the descending lip. Not one twitch, it lay still. Not the means I would have preferred to end this contest between farmer and foe, but the deed is irreversible. The fruits of my labor now are the exclusive domain for only to myself and my progeny.

With that morose snippet aside, Monday presented a karmic backlash of unparalleled dimensions. Nearly anything that could have broke over the weekend did. Anything that escaped was victim of secondary or tertiary system failure. What a mess. It will take days to sort it all out and this wondrous Tuesday morning was host to a greater evil. The 0700 corporate staff meeting. If you are fortunate enough to not have the joy of attending a meeting at that absurd hour, count your lucky stars. The misery of the worker-bees was compounded by the revelation that the coffee machine privileges was rescinded by our supplier since we were not buying enough coffee. An overwhelming number of coffee drinkers were out in the field, and thus, not consuming. No consumption, no orders, no coffee machine for free. Will the horrors never end!?


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