Raccoon Infestation

December 6th, 2022

Does anyone else’s family have a habit of going through the trash to check up on them? Is it just me?

I regularly tidy up the house by throwing away small, useless objects: scraps of detritus left over from craft projects, birthday swag, anything with glue and glitter on it. Tiny little bits of flotsam and jetsom I find clumped together in corners, on the table, under their bed, etc. Sometimes it’s a plastic “jewel” glued to a piece of fuzz with a pipe cleaner sticking out of it. Or, say, a page torn from a coloring book and scribbled across with one single marker before being abandoned. After bedtime, I sweep through the house and collect handfuls of such garbage to throw out. Done.

But not so fast. The next morning, as we are rushing to get to school, I hear an aggrieved MAMAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA WHY DID YOU THROW THIS AWAY?

My response to this is always “Why are you going through the trash?” Classic technique — if you’re guilty, only answer a question with another question.

The other day, as I was fielding yet another of these histrionic emergencies, my husband interrupted to ask, “Hey, why did you throw this jar in the recycling?”

It was a glass mason jar that, approximately two months ago, Eliza and I used to make DIY snow globes with glitter, glow-in-the-dark stars, glass marbles, and some hair product that happened to contain glycerin. After sitting lonesome on a side table for the entire duration, I opened the jar to find that it smelled really bad. So I emptied the liquid and tried to clean out the jar. But the glue we used to affix the stars was everywhere. I decided to just recycle the jar. 

Why do I have to explain all this? Why can’t my family members trust that if I throw something in the trash or recycling, it’s because it needs to be thrown away?

Later that same night, as we were eating pizza and salad from a local place, I realized there was a piece of hair in my mouth (sorry, should have issued a trigger warning). As discreetly as possible, I pulled the offending piece of lettuce aside and placed it on the empty pizza box. My husband, not missing a beat, picked it up and put it in his mouth: “Why are you wasting this?” 

I stared at him incredulously.

Folks, I ask you, if one sees a grown woman pull a piece of food out of her mouth and set it aside, should one ever be tempted to EAT IT?

To prevent raccoons from sorting through your garbage, you are supposed to tie it down with chains or bungee cords or something. But when the raccoons are inside your own house, then what?


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