Saturday, August 19, 2006

Coyotes

It’s a few years back now that my nephew, D****, showed up, bandaged, bruised and with his left arm secured in a spiffy plastic sling. I had heard that he had taken a tumble from his bike and busted himself up a bit, shoulder-wise. The visual evidence was backing up all I had heard but we were still a little shy on the why-fores and the what-the-hecks. “Zounds, D****,” I said, poking him in the broke part, “what’s up with this action, huh?”

“Coyotes,” he ground out between tightly clenched teeth before slouching off to the TV room to complain extravagantly about what a world class maroon I, his favorite uncle, was. Typical teenager.

Of course ‘coyotes’ was kind of a vague response, on one hand telling nothing while on the other hand leaving loads of leeway for unfounded speculation. I, of course, am completely ‘in’ to unfounded speculation, so here goes: My nephew was riding his bike home from some unidentified pal’s place out in the countryside. The road was clear and he was making good time, then as he was cresting one of the many gently rolling hills that make this such a wonderful part of the world in which to live, he spotted a small stand set up next to the road. Apparently a bunch (or a ‘flock’) of coyotes had set up shop and were selling Mouse Smoothies at a very reasonable price. So reasonable in fact that they were pretty much losing money on the deal (coyotes tend not to have a lot of business savvy).

Of course D**** was tempted, who wouldn’t be, but since he had been riding with his mouth open he had already swallowed his daily protein allotment in bugs, he decided to pass. The coyotes, sensing a possible sale slipping through their paws, growled a message that D**** understood to mean, “pull over and buy a Mouse Smoothie or two, or suffer the consequences, coyote-wise.”

D**** pulls over and downs a nice frosty Mouse Smoothie then goes to pull the three fifty ($3.50) he owes out of his pocket. The snag in the plan was that he didn’t have $3.50 in his pocket. Truth be told, he didn’t have so much as an Argentinean neuphinig to his name and it suddenly occurred to him that things could get a little sticky now. He eyed the coyotes slouching expectantly all over the Mouse Smoothie stand, knowing full well that there was no point in trying to negotiate some sort of payment plan with them because coyotes are such greedy SOBs, so he does the next best thing and leaps back on his bike and skedaddles towards home and safety.

The thing is that coyotes are wild animals and have reflexes that would put a finely tuned whip-spring to shame, and they are up and after him in a flash. Fortunately coyotes tend to forget that human reflexes are not up to coyote specs, so rather than leaping for where D**** was they leapt for where they figured he would be. The resulting coyote pileup was right in front of D****’s bike and he had no time to maneuver around to it was whammo followed by heels over head and two points through the handlebars. A quick “snap” later and D**** comes to, wondering where the coyotes were and why he can scratch his left ankle without bending over.

So the final results were: Coyotes - 1, D**** - 0, and for the next several weeks his parents had to bungie him into bed so he wouldn’t flail around too much. Oh, to be a teen again.

Anyway… Humouroceros

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