Friday, October 5, 2007

I brake for rats!

Today I swerved to avoid hitting a rat in the street. It was sitting on it's hind haunches and eating smashed leftovers and I slowed, recognized it was a rat, and swerved. Here in Northern California, as in other areas, rats are disgusting, carriers of disease, and I swerved. What has happened to the little girl who used to put a stone on the body of a daddy long legs and proceed to pick off, one by one, the spiders legs, or the girl that used to burn to toast any handy bug that I could put under my magnifying glass? Do you know that I now go out of my way to carefully trap bugs in my house so I can release them in the backyard? President Spencer Kimball told of a song called, "Don't kill the little birdies," that changed how he forever saw any living species. We once had a mole in our front yard that was destroying the many dollars worth of landscaping that we had invested in. We tried everything, and finally Roy plugged up all the holes but one, then flooded the routes out, all the while waiting with a shovel to crack his skull. He finished the job, came in the house, took a shower and came out still shivering. It was a horrible experience that he even teared up over. And.....I'm glad he did. Cliched as it is, life becomes precious the older you get, and in animal years I'm ancient. I'm glad, I think, that I "brake for rats," although I don't think I'll put that on my bumper sticker.

9 comments:

Ann said...

i'm starting to feel guilt about killing harmless creatures so this is how i now look at it: if and intruder has come into my home-i have the right to get rid of him anyway i'd like; if i'm in their world-i try not to bother them. maybe someday i'll be even better and catch and release like you do. :)

and p.s. the only rats i don't mind are mrs. frisby and the rats of nimh.

lane said...

Sometimes I feel this way, too. Then I remember that I eat meat. That causes all kinds of painful cognitive dissonance and then I figure, what the heck, kill the spider, ants, etc.

Roy said...

Death to rodents! (of course I do side with Ann about the "my space" territorial thing).

You continue to be amazing Kate!

angie said...

i think i'd just brake for anything moving - just out of reaction - but i find if i try and swerve for a squirrel, i'll hit it, no matter

Abbie said...

I would like to bring to your remembrance the "baby spider" season of the year. A time when you lie in bed shrieking at dad telling him to kill every one you see...I don't condemn you for this, I condone the process, but I think maybe we all have our ups and downs of animal awareness. PS I would like to get on a soap box and say if you are vegetarian for animal reasons, be a vegan or youre a hypocrite

pat said...

Abbie you are such a loser. Mom I can't believe I have missed so much good blogging. We now have internet again so look for new posts.

catherine said...

WHat's a vegan?

Emily said...

love your writing mom! love the story. . .

Emily said...

oh, and love the rat picture:)