So for some reason I’ve seen quite a few opossums lately. This against the backdrop of a life of 30something years encountering approximately zero of them.
First, it was last Tuesday or Wednesday morning when the animal control officer was in my neighbor’s backyard dealing with a “dead” possum that had been attacked by the neighbors dog (the one who howls along with every f*cking siren that passes by). It was a mommy possum, because there were a couple baby opossum still hanging in there (having not yet learned the whole “playing possum” trick).
Excerpt of the exchange:
Animal control officer: “Was it your dog who attacked the possum?”
Lady holding baby (who had also not learned to play possum), leaning out bay window, hesitating: “Umm..”
Animal control officer: “It’s OK if he did, I just wanted to know..”
Lady holding baby: “Do you get many people who think it’s a felony?”
Ok, I made up the last line. As the animal control officer tossed it in a bag I was thinking, “yeah, SURE that thing is dead. It’s a possum, lady, don’t you have some way to be sure?” Then I realized, the best way to be sure was to put it in that bag. These government types are always one step ahead of me, giving new credence to Joe Brennan’s brilliant 1994 gubernatorial campaign slogan, “Gummint Works!” And somehow, he still lost.
Then, most recently (Friday night) I had a weird encounter with one. I was walking up a street here in Cambridge and there he was, looking at me with this funny expression, standing in an entryway much closer than I usually let something get before noticing it. He was not scared of me in the least and was clearly proud of having seen me before I saw him. He stared. He looked like he had some strange agenda. I kept walking, he kept staring. He might have had me mixed up with my neighbor, I’m not sure.
But, for fun, I tried to look up any mythological connotations to opossums – to see if they “mean” anything – and came across this gem. I’m going to keep my Israeli/Palestinean policy chatter out of this one and call out a funny excerpt:
“The opossum, or possum, is a pest and a varmint, a grungy, creepy critter of the night. Eating snakes, lizards, garbage, and rotting carrion, this half-buzzard junk-food addict is the scum-bag bum of animals. It loots and pillages habitually. It robs birds and turtle nests and eats the eggs. Like a thief, it doesn’t attack man directly but creeps in the dead of night to scrounge. It is known to play possum, playing dead, when losing a fight. Those who don’t know these things about the possum have a problem with reality.”
Uhhhh.. OK. But, much more important, it continues, telling me that my soul is probably doomed:
“In the Spiritual realm, the opossum is the symbol of Ba’al, who rejects the pure food of Bible Doctrine for the evil junk of the devil’s world.”
So, Ba’al is after me now? Shit, right when I think everything’s going great… who is this Ba’al, anyway? I’ll do some research .. but first, sleep.
P.S: Another site has an interesting take: “An Opossum is a warning that ignoring your problems will not make them go away.”
o0ooh!! Before, we were talking dollars. But now.. we’re talking sense! 😉