My favorite part of running this blog, by miles and miles, is reading the comments. Sometimes they make me laugh, sometimes they make me think, and sometimes they are very moving. Often it’s all of the above.
And then there are those that make me proud. Because they say flattering things about the writing (thank you, everyone!). Or because I’m proud to see the beautiful expressions of thought that my story has inspired.
This is a lovely article. It always stuns me when people think of animals as wild and incapable of complex thought… Since I live and breathe animals every day and only WISH that much of humanity could compare. I’m glad you learned a bit more about that from your experiences. I wonder if you realize that the fox likely felt much the same way about your housing situation that you did… That they would have loved to live the safe, happy “grown up” fox life that they dream of… With no bb guns, no butterscotch colored dogs, no landlords ruling over their lives, without even being able to come and go freely in their own space, without being able to use their whole space as their own because of their landlords lingering presence… Of course the landlords in this case being your own family. And perhaps even that offering you a payment of “rent”, to help you feed your family, could smooth relations.
Of course, animals are not as complex. But we have a hubris of thinking we’re a lot more complex than we are. Thinking that complex emotions are anything more than glorified instincts and adaptability… And, truly, you were never in any danger (foxes, especially a healthy successful breeding pair, are unlikely to try to come close to a human unless you threatened the kits) and neither were the foxes… But neither of you knew that.
I hope you’re happier where you are in your life now… And I hope nature continues to grow on you. Animals are so insightful, loving, and thoughtful… Just because they do not dwell needlessly doesn’t make them dumb. Indeed, I wish I could dwell less and live more. So I also hope you end up living more as well as you find your inner fox.
Congrats on being freshly pressed!
Thank you! And thank you for the comment, which makes me want to be a better person. Onward and upward, everyone!
My roommate arrived before I did; I met his stuff before I met him.
Meeting his stuff first was fine with me, because the truth was that I was a little afraid of him. Wilfred Carter Boiteaux III. From New Orleans. Or maybe of New Orleans? I had not known anyone with a name like that before.
A month earlier we had spoken on the phone. I had expected Thurston Howell but he didn’t sound quite like that. He sounded like a decent guy who would make a good roommate. If anything he sounded as anxious and nervous as me.
And now, as I gazed at his stuff, I saw nothing to concern me. Nothing violent or bizarre; no gaudy signs of wealth. A suitcase, unopened, stood in his closet. A small black-and-white television sat on the corner of the desk, next to the folder of orientation materials we’d received in the mail. On the top of the folder was the yellow sheet with the room assignments, just like the one I had, only in the blank for roommate, his sheet would have my name instead of his own.
Jacke Wilson from Cadbridge, Wisconsin. Just how disappointed had he been to see that?
Well, what could I do about it now? Maybe I’d grow on him.
Then I looked up and noticed something else: his bookshelf. It was completely full. Continue reading →