Monday, February 11, 2008

so sick. & the story of the killer squirrel.

Omg. My head is going to explode. My ears are "full". I'm coughing like there is no tomorrow. (if there really was no tomorrow, why would I want to spend my last day coughing?) I'm clammy. Ugh. Want. To. Die.

I need/want to check up on all of you. But I can't seem to stay in an upright position.


After talking about the plague with Sarah, I wanted to tell you all the story of The Not So Friendly Squirrel (or The Really Stupid Girl Named Nancy Who Thought Squirrels are for Petting.).

I was living in Arizona at the time and a friend from Baltimore came out to visit. He's never seen the desert, so I took him to the Grand Canyon. When we got there, we did the normal oohing and aahing then headed down the trail. No, we weren't going to hike the grand canyon, but we did take a nice hike down about 1/2 mile.

There were lots of squirrels on the path, as lots of visitors bring lots of snacks. This one particular squirrel looked so damned tame and fluffy that I had the "petting" urge. Don't ask why. I know squirrels aren't the petting type. But here I am, sticking my hand out to pet the damned thing.

It looked all cute and charming as I approached. It's big black eyes looking at me all sadlike, his tail all fluffy, his hands in front of him as he stood on his hind legs.

And then he turned into this maniacal looking rodent who bared his teeth and bit the shit out of my hand.

I tried to act all cool. My friend was like "what the fuck did you do that for?? Did he bite you?" And I said "No, I just got too close. He didn't bite me."

We walk back up with me keeping my hand behind my back is it was literally pouring blood. The bit was deep and on the fingertip - right where it bleeds ~a lot~. We get out of the path area and I see a sign "Don't feed the squirrels. They have been known to carry the plague".


Holy shit. The plague. That's an awfully scary word to think of when you think of an illness YOU may have been infected with. My mind goes back to the stories of the Black Death of Europe in the 1300s. Where I've seen images of people decomposing while still alive, oozing black pus. Ugh. (Although I was wrong in which kind of plague I was freaking out about - for I could have contracted the bubonic plague, the classic sign being the appearance of buboes in the groin, the neck and armpits, which oozed pus and bled - which isn't much more appealing).

I go into a panic. I start thinking I need to get the plague out of my body immediately. I think of how they suck out the poision from snake bites and go with that, knowing damn well it's been too long for any such thing to work. But I suck on that bite. I suck and spit mouthful after mouthful of blood. Mind you, all the while pretending nothing was wrong. My friend didn't notice at all, as he was ahead of me walking around.

Seriously, for weeks I waited for the sign of the plague to fall upon me. Thankfully, it never did hit me. Unless it waited, hiding inside me, only to strike now - 12 years later.


Sarah R said...

I had to giggle a little at your tag for the post. I think your symptoms sound more like the bubonic plague, rather than the black blague. :)

That sucks that you're sick though! OMG, I just remembered that you were in my dream last night. You were at this random family function of mine. Weird! I can't remember too many details, just that you were there and I think we were at my grandparents' house and there were tons of people there.

Sarah R said...

from wiki: Bubonic plague is mainly a disease in rodents and fleas (Xenopsylla cheopis). Infection in a human occurs when a person is bitten by a flea that has been infected by biting a rodent that itself has been infected by the bite of a flea carrying the disease.

So yeah, hopefully the squirrel was flea-free. ;) Seriously, you were bitten by a squirrel? How did this come about?

About my blog, I just started it a few weeks ago, so that's why it's new to you. Thanks for the nice comment (you're my very first commenter, BTW).

nancy said...


Stop freaking me out!!! :)

I need to lay down a bit, my head is throbbing. But I will get up and write all about my brush with the squirrel. It's actually pretty funny.

Maybe I'll just write about it now. I may not get up once I lay down!

Lori said...

I don't know if it helps the plague (bubonic or black), but I'm sending you this:

Feel better soon, Nancy.

Duck said...

HA HA HA HA I can't believe you were feeding the squirrels. Too funny. I had a squirrel turn on me once too, and I wasn't even feeding it. It chased me down, it was big and scary and probably had rabies aka the plague.
Hope your feeling better soon.

Melanie said...

Thank you for the laugh. And it was a good one. No, no, not laughing at your expense, just the mental picture of the squirrelzilla. Little bastard. Hope you're feeling better. Good news on having a schedule. Just to know that you're going to be doing something, anything, is so wonderfully fulfilling.

Monica Fayth said...

I've had that since Thursday. So I feel for ya.

Io said...

Oh. I am SO sorry, but I am sitting here cracking up at the image of you sucking the blood out of your hand and spitting over and over again and trying to hide it from your friend.
I have a vague memory of going to a park (in Colorado maybe?) as a kid and feeding chipmunks. There were probably a hundred chipmunks and a few squirrels that came down, but they said not to feed the squirrels. I wonder if it was b/c of the plague? How weird.
I hope you feel better soon!

Sarah R said...

That story was hilarious! I can't believe you didn't tell your friend that you were bitten. OMG. Hahahaha! I wasn't trying to scare you with the plague, just trying to bring you a laugh. I find squirrels funny too--I once was on the floor laughing at work. Literally, I couldn't stop laughing and fell to the ground. Reason being? I got a very professional-looking envelope in the mail and the return address said "NASA". "Oooh, NASA...", I was thinking. I felt important. I open it up. What is it? None other than a brochure for NASA, the North American Squirrel Association. I didn't know such a thing existed! I expected to read something about aeronautic technology and instead there it was staring at me, a squirrel.

MrsSpock said...

Holy crap! Sorry for laughing....I think my first fear would be rabies...but the plague is scarier. We have to have bioterrorism training for my nursing job, and they have always told us the pneumonic plague is deadlier- but they both suck.