Well, I’ve jumped the shark.


Let’s have a snort. I joined Facebook. After writing thirteen books over a period of five or six years, and selling only twenty, I figured if I intend for any of them to fly off the servers, I better spread the word that they exist. It was an enlightening experience in a country boys life. I ‘friended’ one person and the next thing I know, I am in contact with nearly a thousand people. I am not by nature an outgoing person. I don’t have friends in real life (they call that IRL) and I am a stone introvert. I do not chat. So we will see how this experiment works. I may be writing here next week that I had to kill the Facebook account because of too much input. So far so good. I had an uncle Frank that was a legendary drinker. He lived in Savannah, and it just happens that I had another uncle there, Eddie, that could match him drink for drink and antic for antic. They did not hang out together. Eddie was rich and lived on a tidal river. Frank was not and did not. But I think they would have been friends had they met. They both had lowcountry accents so hard that you had to lean in close to understand what they were saying. Both excellent fellows, and I am sorry I missed their early days.


Down on Squirrels


I wonder how many people really like squirrels? They are the biting saltwater marsh mosquitoes of the mammal world, in my opinion. This is also the opinion of three other people I know. That is nearly 100% of the people I know, so I am convinced that most people hate them. My backyard is full of them. You look out and see the leaves and underbrush crawling with them. I suppose you could get rid of them by eliminating their habitat. They would not like a cement back yard. But neither would I.

If only they would be considered a public health hazard and the full power of the CDC aimed at eliminating them. Do not whine to me about their place in the environment, how they are a vital link. Nothing eats them. They never die except from disease or starvation or a few that are squashed by cars. Who is their enemy? They are too fast and scuttly for a coyote, a cat might catch one once in a while, but he won’t enjoy it when the beast starts twisting around in its vermin-ridden loose skin and biting it with its sharp front teeth.  I guess an alligator could catch one when they come to the waterhole to drink, but alligators don’t eat often enough to make a dent in the squirrel population. Nor do snakes.

Trapping them is useless. If you caught a hundred and hauled them down to the river to drown release into the wild, the number would be replaced in a week. So you tell me – what is their usefulness, and who are their predators? It is not natural for a beast to have no natural enemies. I used to hunt them and even hunters cannot make a dent in them.

You may wonder what the chick has to do with this. Well, an interesting story from my youth occurred to me. When I was five or six, I spent a lot of time at my grandmothers house in Hogville, Georgia. I had a girl cousin a year younger and a sister three years older. We had received an Easter chick for Easter. Acquiring a chick was no problem for my grandma; they had a flock of hens and roosters and often had baby chickens.  Unfortunately, they only gave out one chick on this occasion. The three of us fought like tigers for the chance to hold it and pet it and stuff. The clamor was large. My grandmother was a woman of infinite patience but also knew the practicalities of the real world. She snatched that biddy away and zap, just like that, she pulled its head off.

Talk about surprised. Us children were the very picture of stunned into brief silence. Then we ran howling to tell our mothers that she had gone crazy and killed our biddy. It is enough to say that we all remember that incident and we never got biddies again as play items. Ah, childhood memories. How precious they are. Ya’ll let me know if you have a way to get rid of squirrels inside city limits