Nov. 18, 1999 – We recently received a fax from Snookie Williams of Water Valley wanting to run an ad in the Bruce newspaper. “Join Save The Armadillo Club,” it began. “If Interested,” it continued, “please call 983-2534 (my home number) Mornings from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. and Nights from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m.”
“Armadillos need protection, please call for information.”
I called and told him we had scheduled the ad, but had changed the number to his home phone.
He talked me out of running the ad (by threatening to sue me if I did) but the number is in the book and I will be glad to pass it on to anyone who doesn’t have a book.
Meanwhile, we are hoping the armadillos in our yard will soon hibernate or whatever they do for the winter.
I had just about reconciled to Frank Fernandez’ advice to make my peace with the dillos and let them be, when a big fellow, John Goolsby, stopped me in an Oxford drug store after overhearing a conversation between Patricia Cannon and me.
I was there getting some things for my mother on the way home from a visit with a specialist about her back pain, and Patricia asked me about the armadillos.
I told her I was about to give up and we visited about Calhoun. She was a Capwell and had married Charles Dale Cannon of Bruce, who taught at Ole Miss almost as long as I did.
As I was leaving Goolsby followed me to the door and said he had heard us talking about armadillos.
“I used to work for Dr. Lamar,” he said, “and Mrs. Lamar (now the mayor of Oxford) told me to use black pepper to sprinkle in the flower beds.”
She said they couldn’t stand the smell, he said.
I told Jo Ann and she is planning a trip to a big wholesale grocer to get the biggest container of black pepper she can get.
So, if you drive through Bruce and smell black pepper, don’t call EPA or the health department. Call Snookie Williams and tell him you heard a pack of armadillos sneezing in Bruce.
•The reason I knew winter is approaching is Jo Ann came in with a new electric blanket.
I have been cold for a year now, since having a metal aortic valve installed. It isn’t the valve that makes me cold, it’s all the blood thinner I have to take to keep clots from forming around the valve.
I noted the new blanket and told Jo Ann I was glad she bought it. “We can really use that this winter.”
“It’s not for you,” she said. “It’s for Polar Bear.”
Polar Bear is a very very white cat who moved in here several years ago, and is still unaccepted by the two yellow brindle cats left from a large litter almost ten years ago.
I don’t know if it is a color barrier, a territorial barrier or an age thing, but they, after all this time, still don’t get along. Polar Bear now eats with them some, thank goodness, so we don’t have a chalk marked eating area in the carport.
The two yellow cats sleep on the front patio on an electric blanket, with several large cardboard boxes providing a wind break. However, the cats spend much more time on top of the boxes than they do inside.
Anyway, Polar Bear was in the old wood shed, that we converted to a feed shed for the animals and a potting shed for Jo Ann after we converted from wood to gas logs.
This meant leaving the door open, which presented other problems. So Polar Bear moved in the carport to share my side of the space — that’s why the back of my car is usually sticking out in the cold.
PB’s blanket — electric blanket — also moved from the wood shed to the carport, and on the first cool night Jo Ann decided it didn’t seem to be heating as much as it should.
Thus, the new blanket. And Jo Ann is still enduring the very cold feet I bring to bed each night. She says the shock wakes her completely up, but she usually makes it to sleep after a short time with the Bible and a few pages from her current novel.
•I was driving through Bellefontaine, between Calhoun City and Eupora on Halloween day and noticed Santa Claus and all his reindeer and such stretched across a lawn north of town.
When I got home I turned all the jack-o-’lanterns around so they looked like decorations for Thanksgiving, and thought about taking the ghosts from the display in the front yard.
Somebody old told me one time the older you get, the faster time flies. They were right.