Monday, November 26, 2007

Beware the Ferrets.

I was talking to a couple of coworkers today about my complete and utter horror of the holidays. It begins right about the time the Halloween sugar high subsides and it ends right about the same time as my New Years hangover.

The reason I mention this is that I started thinking about why I hate and/or am afraid of certain things. I am terrified of spiders. Completely, utterly, incredibly, beyond all sense of reason driven insane at the mere sight of a spider. It doesn't matter the size. Size of a dinner plate or size of a pencil eraser - I am equally convinced they are deadly and out to get me. I have no idea why I am afraid of them. It might have something to do with the grand-daddy longlegs my brother used to throw at me when we were kids. I am not sure therapist never decided.

That reminisence led me to my fear of ferrets. Oh,shut up. They may not have eight legs and venom, but they have those beady little eyes and those little scratchy feet squicks me out. This, however, is one fear I can vividly recall the origin of.

I was about 4 or 5 and my Mom and I stopped at the pet store. I have no idea what we went there for and I don't remember if we actually got what we went to get, but I DO remember the ferrets. They were in these big wire cages on the floor and I thought they were so cute. Like little kitties and I was immediately fascinated by them and I bee-lined for those adorable little creatures because I was FOUR and that's what little kids do and it isn't my fault that the pet store manager (who obviously had no children) put the cages where I could reach them because they were so cute and I really wanted one and "Mommy, can I have one? Huh? 'Cause they are the cutest things ever. Even cuter than my Cabbage Patch Doll and I really want one..."

...AND THEN...


And the ferret did what any animal would do if a small, crunchy, human finger came through the bars of their prison cell....he bit me.

I screamed.
The ferret shrieked the shriek of an animal possessed and bit harder.
I screamed louder and proceeded to yank my finger as I hard as I could trying desperately to get it back.
That, of course, resulted in the ferret having his head bashed against the bars of the cage.

SO - I am screaming and systematically beating the evil ferret senseless and the store manager is yelling at me stop yanking on my finger and killing the merchandise and my Mom is yelling at the store manager to stop yelling at me and scaring the piss out of me because "for Christ sake she is already terrified so stop with the yelling already" and finally the ferret loses consciousness and his grip loosens.

Sweet relief.

Apparently, ferrets get some form of lockjaw when they bite. It is some kind of defense mechanism they can't really control. Precisely why ALL pet store owners should put them well within reach of the patrons most likely to stick their finger through the cage bars...that Ass Goblin pet store owner has earned my eternal wrath.

I didn't get the ferret, but I did get a lollipop and a lifelong fear of those beady-eyed little suckers. I swear this is a true story. Seriously, I couldn't make this stuff up.

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