Tuesday, February 27, 2007


Animal Control is on their way to my house. They’re closed on Mondays, so they couldn’t make it out until today, four days after our battle began—the battle for our backyard.

Sometime in the early evening of Friday, a small, happy-go-lucky skunk decided to move into the wilderness that is my backyard. And while I’m all for the cohabitation of nature and man, my bulldogs are not. It is their backyard, and they guard it like a castle. This was the case when at half-past-ten Bronco, one of my munchkin-doodles, dove through the doggy-door at a dead sprint and began rolling vigorously all over our carpet in the office. Mark and I watched curiously for approximately one second before being completely overcome by the burning, musky scent of skunk, sprayed all over our dog.

If you ever want to know how you’d really respond in a true emergency, have a dog rub skunk spray all over your house. As it turned out, I reacted poorly but quickly. Screaming, tears running down my face, I chased Bronco around the house before quarantining him in my bathroom. As with all emergencies, my first instinct was to get online and google “skunk spray dog.” I now imagine if Mark lost a hand in a backyard wood chipper, I’d run inside and google “detached hand” before realizing I should call 911. Perhaps I could text 911 while googling and post a bulletin on Myspace.

Anyway, at this point Mark and I discover that I have none of the home remedies listed online and realize I’ve got to make a run to Wal-Mart because the Dollar Palace is closed (see yesterday’s post). Now, despite Bronco’s success in spreading his stinkies (this is the word we use so he understands) across the entire house, I’ve actually managed not to touch him at this point and assume I’m safe to go out in public (the fatal assumption). I jump in the Volvo and off I go.

Mere moments after walking into the Wal-Mart health and beauty section, I pass two associates who remark to each other:

Shelby-Linn: “Kaylee-Mae, do you smell sompthin’?”
Kalylee-Mae: “Damn that’s nasty… smells like sompthin’s burnin’ gurl!”

I stop dead in my tracks. “No,” I think, “It can’t be me… I didn’t touch anything. I’m just being paranoid!” Lots of things in Wal-Mart smell like shit, including many of the other customers and Loretta—the 92 year old greeter with the colostomy bag. “I’m fine,” I tell myself one more time before proceeding and encountering yet another associate, Patsy.

Patsy shouting across three aisles to Kaylee-Mae and Shelby-Linn: “Now I smell it over in aisle thurteen! What is it?!”

I’m standing next to Patsy as she belts out this proclamation. She has no idea it’s me. It is me. I’ve now got a team of associates calling a manager to come find out what the smell in health and beauty is. FUCK.

Although I never realized it before, I learned that night that my greatest fear is actually smelling like burnt rubber and musk (in public). People always say “death” or “public speaking” when polled about this sort of thing, but I’d better dollars to doughnuts it would only take one good skunk incident to get these people to change their vote. Shocked, horrified, and now crippled by emotional pain, I ran straight out of the store without buying a single thing. I vowed never to return.

Alas I was forced to call my father, at midnight, and ask him to get the products for me (including feminine douche, which he actually purchased but only after having to explain the entire story to the cashier) and bring them over to the house—the house, which at this point, I’m not sure I can ever leave again. I stayed up until three in the morning scrubbing every surface of my home, only to go to bed completely saturated with the skunk—in my hair, my eyes, my nose, my mouth, my very soul.

It’s been four days now and the house still smells. Bronco still smells. My bathroom still makes my eyes water. And worst of all, the skunk is still in the backyard, digging in for a long summer of fun. I can’t even let the dogs in the backyard because of the smell and possible rematch. I keep telling myself they will catch him; take him away, far away. I can’t smell like that again. I can’t. I won’t.


Mandy said...

My cocker spaniel got sprayed by a skunk when I was in high school- my Mom let him in the house before she realized what had happened.
The. Smell. Sticks. To. Everything.
Clothes in completely closed drawers and closets will smell- it's insane!!!!
Has everyone taken baths in tomato juice? It really, really helps.
So does simmering citrus fruits and some cinnamon in stick form in water on the stove.
Anti-skunk potpourri, if you will!
(This is the funniest blog I have ever read.)

blythe said...

a few things:
1) nice facebook promotion. hadn't thought of that.
2) you need a blackberry so you can call 911 and google simultaneously.
3)i peed myself a little while reading this. good work.
4)i know what we're doing this week! skunk huntin'! don't worry, i just ironed my Sunday best so i'll make the trip to wal-mart for supplies - you know, guns, ammo, beef jerky. yay!

Dave said...

I actually like the smell of skunk. I mean, I've never been sprayed - I guess it's more intense? - but when I'm driving and I pass thru an area where some skunk committed suicide or whatever, I... like the smell. Though I do feel for you, Mark, the pooches, the skunk who no doubt got the juice scared out of him BY your pooches, and for your dad who had to buy douches for you. Godspeed, Shain. Godspeed.

Julie_Gong said...

while i feel terrible for you that might be the funniest post i've read in a while. hope the smell goes away soon.

Anonymous said...

wow. that's ... awful. heh.

Anonymous said...

Yes, my cocker got sprayed this morn. He just stood there in an aggressive stance while the pole cat shot him again and again.

I had to swat the mutt to wake him out of his stupidity.

I hosed him down outside, in the dark, on the front porch, then marched him into the shower.

Now when he hears the word skunk he just cringes.

He still has an odor.