Squirrel — Part 3

red-squirrel21.jpg1/31/13  (evening)

I really don’t want to go to the rodents tonight. It’s 8:45 and the girls just fell asleep and I’m beat from spending the evening with Ray and the twins at Barnes & Noble, where the former of this group had a complete mental disintegration show because I wouldn’t buy him a book of stickers that contained pictures of legos in the shape of Star Wars characters. He threw himself on the floor in front of the clearance bin and screamed that when we got home he was going to rip up all my books. I keep forgetting to ask him if he meant the ones I read or the ones I wrote. Anyway, he also said he hated me and that I was stupid. And he kicked and smacked me.

I don’t want to drive over the bridge again this time of night. It’s such a bummer.

I called Best Buy this afternoon because I thought maybe I could figure out a way to set up a critter cam in the attic. I was thinking if I could study their traffic patterns I might learn enough to appropriately set the traps. I shared these thoughts at some length with a salesgirl on the phone, and when I was done there was kind of a long silence. You mean like maybe a baby monitor, she said, after a while. Then she hung up on me. I’m not lying. I thought Best Buy had better customer service than that.

During Ray’s karate class one of the fathers told me to just put those Victor rat traps all around. He promised me that it would just kill them immediately and my problems would be solved. I don’t know. Maybe if I tied a wire around the trap and attached it to something it would keep the squirrel from limping off ensnared in the trap, something I’ve seen mice do quite a lot. Then again, there is a Youtube video of a squirrel getting snapped in the nose but still living to tell the tale, so I don’t know if I should listen to that father. His son is excellent in karate, though.

I called my squirrel guy again. His name is Artie. He is seventy and he never makes me feel like I am annoying him. I asked him what he thought of Ray’s classmate’s father’s idea and he told me this horrible story about a doctor who was a client of his some years ago. The doctor said to him, “Art, I can’t understand why I have all these blind squirrels running around the yard.” And Artie checked it out and was like, have you been setting Victor traps around, and the doctor said yes, and Artie said well you’re a doctor, you should know what’s going on. They’re getting smashed in the face but still managing to get free. Your traps have blinded them all.

We talked for a while more and at some point Artie asked me why I was yelling at him. I had no idea that I was being anything but emphatic. I apologized.

I also asked Artie if in all his years as a pest guy if there was any case as difficult as this one, and he was like what? I said, you know, where it takes weeks and weeks to catch the squirrels. And you know what he said? He said the funniest and strangest thing. He said, “That’s trappin’.” Isn’t that funny? That’s trapping. Like it’s an art form. A way of life.

Artie is going to meet with me on Saturday to show me how to use a Conibear trap. He says if we place it directly over the hole the squirrels will have to go through them to get into the attic. Which makes me sad in some weird way.

Oh, I also called Dick’s Sporting Goods and asked about an air rifle but when I told him what I wanted it for he said call an exterminator.

Maybe when I meet with that pest control man tomorrow I’ll just write him a check. I really don’t want to go out again tonight. But Artie says you have to check every 24 hours.

I just know there won’t be any squirrels tonight. But you know how it is. That’s trappin’.


Go on to Part 4


  1. I am sure you resolved this by now, But they can create a large amount of damage including electrical fires. I think a typical cat would take of it. Just put a cat up there during the night. If they feel threatened they will relocate.

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