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Not long after we moved here, the Mad Scientist took up bird-house building. At first they were quite primitive, though they gradually improved. He hung all 300 or so on trees around the property before tiring of the hobby. Then he started building and buying bird feeders. The birds flocked in. Birds of all shapes and sizes and colors. Some quite beautiful, some quite plain. Following right behind the birds were the squirrels. Squirrels really like bird food too, as it turns out. But the Mad Scientist doesn’t want the squirrels eating the bird food, so he tries to get them to leave it alone. The dog chases them, the Mad Scientist shoos them…they return in a few minutes.

Now, the Mad Scientist claims to be a Buddhist. I say claims, because he engages in some very non-buddhist-like activity from time to time. Recently he has started to shoot the squirrels with pellet guns. I’m not sure if he actually hits them, but he sure spends a lot of time trying. This seems particularly unkind to me. It’s like enticing small children into the gingerbread house with candy and then throwing them into the oven.

I told him this and one day he said he’d decided I was right. The food was there for all creatures to enjoy and if the squirrels got to it first, then so be it. That lasted about 30 seconds and then he went back to shooting the squirrels. I heard him shooting his plastic pellet gun earlier today, which sounds like some sort of toy machine gun and shoots super light-weight plastic balls. Sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh-sh…

He seems to have decided to switch to heftier ammunition though, because now I hear a steady stream of thwack! thwack! thwack! thwack!

Yesterday he told me that there was a squirrel hanging around the underside of his car and he couldn’t figure out what it was doing there. I told him I knew exactly what it was doing there.

It’s chewing through your brake lines”.



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