Gopher Holes

Pocket Gopher (Tuza in Spanish)

Image via Wikipedia

My youngest son, Tim was (and still is) always trying to find ways to cause mayhem and if some property gets destroyed in the process – that’s even better!  We have various holes in the sides of house from arrows and steel pellets.  When we re-roofed our house, numerous items were found on the roof – rolls of duct tape, bottles of nail polish, cans of veggies and other assorted craziness – all of it with fishing line tied around it.  When asked how this stuff found its way to the roof and why there was fishing string on it, we were told he was working on his casting to catch big fish.  Plus, how else was he going get stuff from the back yard, over the roof and into the front yard without using his fishing pole?  Apparently the stuff on the roof was those objects which didn’t quite make the trip!  Sounded logical to Tim!

One of our greatest mysteries – other than why did Tim insist on freezing toy cars in glasses of water – concerned a shallow hole in the yard on the side of the house.  We noticed the hole every time we mowed the law or weeded the side garden – because inevitably we would step in it, trip and scream profanities because we had forgotten it was there.  Every time I would mention this hole, Tim was quick to mention that he thought we had gophers and this must be one of their holes.

I found this very hard to believe for a number of reasons – 1. I had never seen a gopher in our yard nor had our dog ever caught sight of a gopher.  2.  The hole didn’t go anywhere.  It was shallow and fairly round. It looked like a cereal bowl carved into the lawn.  The only thing a gopher could do in the hole was sunbathe or take a nap.  3.  The hole was right next to the house, near the water spigot.  I’m pretty sure that any self-respecting gopher would not want a hole where it could be flooded every time the water was turned on.  4.  There were little pieces of fireworks around the edge of the hole.  Now, I’m pretty sure that gophers don’t eat fireworks and I KNOW they don’t have a permit to shoot fireworks – or even sell them.

After much investigation and a sibling ratting him out, Tim confessed that he and his friend had dug the hole and were using it to shoot off fireworks.  When asked, why he needed a hole to shoot fireworks, Tim looked at me like I was stupid and replied that he needed the hole for the bleach and lighter fluid!  After I had calmed down and started breathing again, Tim explained that he and his buddy would fill the hole with lighter fluid and bleach, put bottle rockets in the mixture, light the fireworks and then take bets as to how big the fire-ball was going to be!  He assured me there was no danger – after all, they had put the hole right next to house and the water spigot so they could put out any fires which might be started by this wonderful experiment!

Needless to say, the hole was filled in, the bleach and lighter fluid were put under lock and key, the fire insurance on the house was double-checked and the children were given a refresher course on how to escape the house if there was a fire.  Tim really didn’t see the necessity of any of these steps – nothing was harmed and he still had his eyebrows – so why all of the fuss.  Now, could he please be excused to check on some things he had put in the freezer?


3 responses »

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