Tuesday, October 04, 2005


I waited all day for Animal Control to come yesterday. Even after a second phone call, nothing. So much for the City of Chicago's 311 non-emergency help line.

Knowing that the squirrel was behind the shelves holding the TV, but not able to see or hear it, was nerve-wracking. Dog suggested I leave the back door wide open and go into the bedroom with the cat for awhile, to see if it would leave. So I took a late-morning nap. I crept out 45 minutes later to find the thing growling and clicking behind the TV. Then it got quiet again, and hid, and I called Dog for help. Not home. I called the chiro to cancel my appointment, explaning about the squirrel and hoping they weren't going to charge me for the short notice.

After making some stabs at my November media column I decided to do my abandoned yoga practice. Despite the moon day and the painful back and neck it felt quite good. I was in Marichyasana D when the phone rang: "unknown caller." For some reason I picked it up. Oops.

It was the uber-editor from the publisher. Apparently I read their lack of communication and inability to cut me a cheque for the (meager) advance correctly; I am no longer on the book. Apparently a letter to that effect is in the mail.

This prompted a crying jag that had me rubbing my eyes so hard that both contact lenses folded in on themselves and got pushed up into the sockets far above the eyeballs.

This of course led to more crying, which made things worse. It took about 20 minutes to get them out.

I called my brother ("You didn't want to work for those assholes anyway"), who expressed far more interest in the squirrel drama. Gridlife suggested I still have a legal leg to stand on. Then I phoned Miss Y to ask her about teaching more classes at the new studio she's opening next month. That improved things a bit.

Then back to my practice, finally. No matter how bad (or good. or boring) things get, yoga is always there.

After savasana I carried Kirby around the apartment, using him as a feline geiger counter in an attempt to pinpoint the location of the squirrel. But he was useless and far more interested in the flies that had gotten in and were buzzing about and was clicking his mouth like crazy at them.

Finally Dog arrived and I put the bike gloves and big black boots back on. He seemed skeptical that the squirrel was still there. Armed with brooms, the cat locked in the bedroom, we advanced towards the TV cabinet. He poked here and there and made loud noises. Nothing. He asked for a wire hanger, which I produced from the closet. He unbent it and used it to poke around the back of the shelves, which he had pulled out from the wall. He found a cubbyhole in the back of the bottom one: immediately the clicking and growling started up again and next thing we knew a fat gray squirrel was running past us and out the door.

Well, it seemed to go out the door. In my stressed-out state I'd forgotten to close off the closet. So it's possible the thing is in there. I'm keeping the door closed for now.

Afterwards we stood on the back porch** and watched a fat squirrel play in the yard next door.

Was it him/her?

Perhaps we'll never know.

Later I got a call back from Larry David Midwest, who offered his services, explaining that the Appalachian side of his family had a long history of hunting/killing/skinning/cooking/eating the things. "But of course you're vegan and won't be interested in much of that."

Not vegan, actually.***

Not an author, either, for that matter.


*At least now I know who has been raiding the recyling bin and unrolling and licking clean the foil pieces I use to wrap up the honey/peanut butter Ezekiel toast I take with me to eat after class.

**a great place to visit but I wouldn't want to live there

***Just vegetarian


  1. Anonymous12:24 PM


    I am a regular reader of your blog. I am very sorry about your recent disappointment with the publishers. I am confident with your superior writing skills (better than most out there)very soon you will make it.


  2. Sorry to hear about the book :-(

  3. Did the Scottish lawyer mess that contract up?
    You should never change a form contract, as the publishing business is much like the
    soup nazi, you take it like
    they give it to you, or else,,,
    you get nothing!

    No BOOK deal for YOU, 2 YEARS!