….to the squirrel community. Let me explain.
I take a Zumba class on Wednesday nights at the Sons of Italy. Since the weather has been so pleasant, the men play bocce outside yet frequently peek inside at the ladies dancing to Pitbull. I have befriended one particular gentleman who is sweet and kind and misses his wife. His accent is thick, his heart heavy and his conversation very entertaining.
Recently, I was at the gym when in came my Italian friend.
I asked him how he was doing and he proceeded to tell me the following story:
“I have a lovely garden and I grow my own vegetables. Cucumber, zucchini, tomatoes and beans. I have had a garden for years and my wife and I grew all the vegetables we needed. I have had no trouble doing this without her until now. There have been squirrels eating my garden. I put up chicken wire, moth balls, fences and nothing has stopped them. So I set a trap. Not a trap to kill them just to catch them.”
Now I am riveted as he tells his story. He is becoming more animated and his accent getting thicker. Imagine it if you can.
“I checked the trap one day and found that I caught a squirrel. A-ha! So I carefully reach in the trap and grab the squirrel by the neck and drown him in a bucket of water!”
“It’s a message,” he said.
Now a few thoughts are running through my mind.
- Holy crap, he just killed a squirrel with his bare hands.
- A message? Do the other squirrels know it’s a message? Is there a network that tells the other squirrels there’s a mad man loose killing their friends and family?
- I am so glad he likes me, and I am Italian, although not Sicilian. (I never actually confessed that to him)
I am stunned yet somewhat impressed. Moral of the story: do not piss off an Italian gardener or make sure you have a guy like that on your side. At 80 years old, he can still kick your butt.