I know that the saying stems from a possum's defense of playing dead to avoid prey. I had just never witnessed it, myself. Back in October, I wrote a tip for Tuesday reminding you to lock your dog door (if you have one). This is because I walked through the living room one morning and almost stepped on the slaughtered possum that my asshole dog left on the rug for me. It was completely disgusting and I made PJ get rid of it. I stop my wifely duties at carcasses.
About two weeks later, we were all sitting down to dinner in the dining room. Our dining room and living room share a big space, so when the kids were done with dinner, some of them moved over to the couch. A few of us were at the table and a couple of kids were hanging on the couch. None of us saw the dog come in from the dog door by the slider. All of a sudden, Sean started shouting, "Mommy, mommy, mommy!" in an increasingly panicked tone. Then he yelled, "I DON'T KNOW WHAT HE'S EATING!" This foolish animal has eaten so many toys and baby dolls, I just kind of assumed that was what Sean was so upset about. I should've known better by his panic. I walked over and the dog was very busy playing with a bloody mess that was, in its better days, a possum. How he even managed to walk right by all of us and drop that in the middle of the living room is a complete mystery. Ninja asshole.
I quickly ushered the kids out of the room so PJ and I could deal with it. Possums aren't small, by the way. I've dealt with the cats leaving gifts of birds, mice, and even snakes. Possums are not tiny critters. PJ went and got the shovel and asked me to hold open a large trash bag. As he scooped up this poor, dead thing, it moved. Not only did it move, but as PJ lifted the shovel the damn thing STOOD STRAIGHT UP. It wasn't dead. It was playing possum! At that point, we couldn't stick a live possum in a bag, so I held the front door and PJ walked straight through the house balancing a possum standing up on the end of his shovel. I'm so sad I didn't get a video of that. (Stop for one moment and close your eyes. Please picture my husband walking ever so gingerly through my house with a shovel held at arm's length and a full-grown possum just standing straight up on the end of said shovel.) Those were some impressive moves.
|Thank you Opossum Society of the US for this handy explanation!|
Since the great live possum of 2014, we haven't had anymore animal incidents. I can only hope we get to witness the origins of some other popular English idioms in 2015. Maybe someone will actually let the cat out of the bag. Or, perhaps, we will hear something straight from the horse's mouth. Like a neigh. Or a whinny.
-->What about you? Have your pets left you any awful "presents"? Were they still alive?? Leave your story in the comments below...