Crystal and the Critters

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            I know I have mentioned this before, but Crystal makes me laugh. I think everyone who has a successful marriage, if pressed, can tell you what they like about their partner. I could not be with anyone who doesn’t have a sense of humor. Crystal not only has one but she laughs at my corny jokes. But what is much rarer, she has a rare ability to be able to laugh at herself. Trust me sometimes the things that happen to her aren’t immediately funny. However, once the dust has settled, we all have a great time.

I try to never tease her about her lack of mechanical ability or occasional bout with being mentally somewhere else when we talk (it occasionally happens to me). But when it comes to nature, let’s just say, the stories never die.

            We have complementary skills. That’s why we work. I understand mechanical things. She doesn’t believe in creative spelling as I do. That’s why we work. However, the natural world doesn’t understand Crystal the way I do. We recently had our house treated for yellow jackets. I went around with the exterminator to try to understand the process. It looked fool proof. I looked around and found no trace of the varmints. Over the next day or two an occasional bee found its way into our room and I killed it. The bug expert told us that might happen. However a couple of days later I got a frantic call. I was just getting out of my Bible study when I found several messages on my phone. I listened just long enough to hear my hysterical wife telling me she was under attack. I rushed home, grabbed the hornet spray and killed the twenty to thirty that were still alive in our bedroom. I then let Crystal handle the call to the exterminator. I think she liked that. I almost felt sorry for the customer service representative. I know she couldn’t possibly be getting paid enough.

            This was only the most recent of a lifetime of misunderstanding between my wife and nature. One time when we had a cook out, she went to throw out the rest of her hot dog, when she jumped and screamed. I had no idea she could jump that high. Michael Jordan would have been proud. I ran to her rescue only to find the cutest little baby raccoon had fallen off a low hanging branch into the trash can, thus eliciting Crystal’s reaction. I tipped over the can to let the baby waddle off to freedom.

            Another time Crystal was alone when she saw two eyes staring at her in our garage. This time it was an older relative of the baby. This was a tough old critter. It took a broom handle and some stick to paw combat to coax the varmint out.

            Then there was the infamous bird in the bathroom fiasco. I got that call at work. I can’t even describe the terror in my wife’s voice. This poor creature had obviously fallen down our chimney, and been scared half to death by a screaming women, when I caught it in a towel and rescued it.

            Then there was the time we rented a cabin and went camping with two of our daughters. That night when Crystal and Michelle went out to the rest room Lisa and I stayed in and talked. A few minutes later we heard them coming back to the cabin. Then Michelle came in pushed her mother back out and slammed the door. She screamed as she came in hitting herself. Apparently the door was covered with moths. Judging from Michelle reaction I can only assume they were of the man eating variety.  I then opened the door to let Crystal in and help clear her of moths.

            No Crystal and nature haven’t always gotten along. But it does make for a lot of fun stories and bonding moments. I think it also makes me feel more useful. Somehow it feels like a manly thing to do to rescue the lady in distress from the savage raccoon or a killer black bird. It’s nice to feel needed.




Lisa and Michelle in front of our cabin during that campout (pre-moth period)

One comment on “Crystal and the Critters

  1. Hi
    So nice of you and Crystal to being your dad Sig to our home today for a short visit. We miss seeing him walk by and visiting with him on our walks thru the neighborhood.
    The blog is such a good way to store memories. Hope to see you all on your next visit to Oak Lawn.

    Toni & Richard Kogol

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