A Pointed Stick

After having had a brutal heat wave last week, the weather here turned much cooler, so on Friday morning, I decided to weed the front flower beds. I was having a great time, yanking out wild carrot and crabgrass from between the daylilies when I bent over and (if you’re the slightest bit squeamish, brace yourself) I was stabbed square in the left eyeball by a dead hydrangea branch. I didn’t see it coming and had no chance to close my eye before it stuck me, and I jumped back in both horror and pain, much to the amusement of the construction crew working on the monster house next door. They watched (or at least I think they did because I couldn’t see anything), as I staggered around the yard, my hand over my eye, tears streaming down my face, and yelling profanities. This is the view they get when they cut down the trees next to MY house. At least I wasn’t naked, and a good thing too because who knows where that stick might have ended up otherwise.

I was eventually able to get back to weeding but as the day wore on, the pain increased, and I got worried. I had an old bottle of antibiotic eyedrops and I used them before bed, and that only MADE THINGS SO MUCH WORSE. And to top it all off, this happened:

Ken: So you know how we thought we had a skunk in the backyard under the deck of the shed?
Me: …yeah…?
Ken: it’s pretty small and kind of cute. Atlas thought so too for a minute. And you know how we had that fence up but then I moved it a bit and forgot to put it back?
Me: …YEAH…?
Ken: Atlas got through it. The skunk wasn’t very happy about it.
Atlas (walking into room): Was cat.
Me (sniffs the air and comes to a horrifying realization): That wasn’t the cat, you dummy!!
Ken: In fairness to Atlas, the skunk and Ilana DO kind of look alike–
Me: OH MY GOD, why is he in here with his skunk-sprayed head??!! Stop rubbing your face on the blankets!!

Not a skunk

So on top of everything else, I had one eye watering from being impaled and the other one watering from the stench. I barely got any sleep and woke up the next morning feeling like there was sandpaper in my eye and skunk ass in my nose. Atlas, on the other hand, was in fine form, ready to tackle the morning, and the skunk if he saw it again. We’d set out a live trap with peanut butter, wet dog food, and a few other things, but apparently this skunk is very finicky and didn’t appreciate our smorgasbord efforts. After two days, the top of Atlas’s head is more reminiscent of sesame oil than really cheap marijuana, so things are looking up. I found the recipe for skunk odour remover that we used on our last dog, so here’s hoping the combination of peroxide, baking soda, and dish detergent rids us all of it for good. As of right now, my eye is feeling slightly better, and I keep thinking about that Monty Python sketch, “How To Defend Yourself From A Man Armed With A Banana”, where one of the unruly students in the self-defense class keeps asking about pointed sticks. Let me tell you, I’d much rather have been attacked by a banana.

In other news, I’m thrilled to announce that I’ve just signed a publishing contract with Potters Grove Press for my second short story collection, At The End Of It All: Stories From The Shadows. It might be out by the end of this year, so put it on your Xmas wishlist!

44 thoughts on “A Pointed Stick

  1. Skunks are cute, and I’m glad I’ve never seen or smelled any around where I live. The only live ones I’ve ever seen have been around where I work… and occasionally the odor would get into the store. An actual exchange I had with a customer about 10 years ago during such an event…

    Lady customer wrinkling up her face: “Is that a skunk I smell?”

    Me: “Yeah. It’s getting in through the dock doors just behind the wall there.”

    Lady customer now looking horrified: “!!!”

    Me: “The smell!!! I didn’t mean the skunk! No, he’s outside!” (And if he gets inside, he’ll end up in the deli rotisserie)

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Skunks can be good for gardens…they snack on bugs and other things that like plants. Plus, they can be pretty friendly…maybe it has babies hidden somewhere? If you have a wildlife cam, maybe set it up at night and see what’s going on with their activities!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I hope your eye heals fast, it sucks to have anything in your eye let alone being stabbed in one. Atlas is adorable, even with skunk piss on his head. Does he have an accent? When he talks he sounds like he’s might have a Russian accent or something Eastern European, lol. I’m so happy about your new book, excited as well, I can’t wait to get a hold of a copy!!!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Suzanne,
    Congratulations on the book deal! Yay! Also, poor Atlas…sorry he had an encounter with Pepe Le Pew.
    Mostly, though, might it be time to get your eye checked out? Sorry, you got poked in the eye. May not be a good time to run around with sharp scissors either. Just saying. Mona

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Ouch, Suzanne, your poor eye! I’m glad it’s feeling better. Go to the doc if it keeps bothering you. And eau de skunk is not a pleasant fragrance – I know from experience. I hope it’s gone now. Yay on the book! Please tell me it’s going to be available as an ebook. 🙂 I loved your last collection. Finally thanks for the Monty Python banana skit. Hilarious.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. You’ll make a nifty one-eyed pirate, now. I hear they don’t smell all that wonderful, so, you’ll fit right in. Can Atlas mimic a parrot? I assume he likes crackers.
    Next year? Oof, that long?

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I’m glad your eye is feeling better and that Atlas only came out slightly smelly from his encounter with the skunk. I guess tomato juice taking out skunk smell is a myth. Skunks always bring back memories of when I was a Boy Scout and at our weekly camp, that had tents that sat up on wooden frames with floors, a kid told us he had a rat under his floor that we only realized was a skunk when we’d all gone in to take a look at it. We never got sprayed. The skunk was probably so used to people being around at that point it didn’t feel a need to defend itself.
    By a funny coincidence at our campfire I got some of my fellow Scouts to put on the “Defense Against Fresh Fruit” sketch. I played the John Cleese part. We did it once and then about a month later tried to do it for a different group of fellow Scouts but they yelled us off and someone shouted, “Don’t go stealing material from Monty Python!” Some attacks have no defence.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. If the smell continues to linger try using q-tips dipped in hydrogen peroxide to clean around his eyes as close as you can, inside the edge of the nostrils and inside his ears. I watched a groomer do this to Ranger about two weeks after he got sprayed and it made a huge difference. Speaking of dogs, I think you missed my post last week about our new dog. If you get a chance stop by and meet Ruby. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

      • It’s a pretty wild story — a “truth is stranger than fiction” kind of thing. I suspected it would be the kind of whodunit that ultimately doesn’t — couldn’t — provide definitive answers to its central question. In the end, it’s less about What happened? than it is a portrait of an emotionally damaged family. Sad story.

        Liked by 1 person

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