Listen, my logocentric brothas... If you want to know whether it's safe to go outside, don't read the text of the forecast, and don't look at the still photo of the radar map. Check out the "Doppler in Motion" or "Map in Motion" feature. It's much more accurate. Weather.com told me it was pissing rain in Crofton at 6:30. The Doppler map-in-motion showed me that the rain had moved on a bit earlier and Crofton was only menaced by clear skies. My Empirical Interpersonal Observational Method (i.e. going outside and looking) indicated it was dry. Simply put, in hermeneutic terms, don't privilege the text over representational images while engaging in the interpretive act. Okay, that wasn't simply put at all and once you start talking hermeneutics, nothing can be explained simply. I'm just saying, if your eyes tell you one thing and the text says something else, go with your eyes. Just because somebody writes something, doesn't mean it's true. Readers of this blog, especially, should be aware of this principle.
So anyhoo Jon and I just tooled around for 20 miles which was fine, since I was spitting out loogies and coughing maybe 25% of the time and Jon is always good company. On the way back into Crofton, spinning down the parkway, this squirrel crossed in front of us. It got halfway across the road, stopped, and as we passed, jetted in front of Jon's bike and toward mine. We were riding abreast, about wheel-to-wheel, so by the time the squirrel got to me, he was under my bottom bracket. He lept for freedom, and like so many of his kind, did not make it.
In a switch from the usual biker-hits-squirrel-biker-hits-pavement routine, I rolled over him like a... fat guy on a bike rolling over a squirrel.
I had mixed feelings about rolling my back wheel over the squirrel, who scrambled off the road, no doubt to climb into the attic or heating system of one of the neighboring homes, there to die and give one last smelly gift to mankind.
On one hand, I'm rather fond of squirrels. They are cute, they are very soft to pet, and if they aren't attacking you and biting the shit out of you, or screwing up the deer hunting (ask me about it some time) they are kind of fun to watch. On the other hand, just about everybody I know who rides has been taken out by a squirrel, or nearly taken out. So the squirrels owe a vast karmic debt to cyclists, one which I may have been sent by Yama to unwittingly collect on behalf of Celestial Karma Bank, LLC. ("Low interest rates on deposits... but you'll find you're cool about it, for some reason.")
Still, I felt a bit out of sorts about it. So I feel it's only proper to eulogize my little furry, swaybacked, deceased buddy. But how do you eulogize a beast? I can only draw on the work of a more talented writer.
Donny The Squirrel was a good bowler, and a good man rodent. He was one of us. He was a man squirrel who loved the outdoors... and bowling, and as a tree surfer he explored the beaches beeches of Southern California Crofton, from La Jolla Eton Lane to Leo Carrillo Harwick and... up to... Pismo Exeter. He died, like so many young men of his generation, he died before his time. In your wisdom, Lord, you took him, as you took so many bright flowering young men at Khe Sanh, at Langdok, at Hill 364. These young men gave their lives. And so would Donny The Squirrel. Donny The Squirrel, who loved bowling. And so, Donald Theodore Kerabatsos The Squirrel, in accordance with what we think your dying wishes might well have been, we commit your final mortal remains to the bosom of the Pacific Ocean, the attic of some guy’s house just off Mayflower Court, which you loved so well where you loved to hide your nuts. Good night, sweet prince.
[Ed. What the f*** does this have to do with VietNam? I don't see any connection to VietNam.]
Well, there isn't a literal connection, Dude...
[Ed. Face it. There isn't any connection.]
Anyhow, may our friend The Squirrel rest in peace. Requiescat in pacem.
And for my riding friends, just remember: Cave sciurida!