While I did not receive any comments on my blog at the time I posted it, I have received a slow trickle of venomous commentary since then, most of it posted anonymously.
The first anonymous comment came in May of 2007:
Google "possums" and learn something about them. I've rescued and had close encounters with a number of them. They are gentle, slow-moving creatures that pose little threat. They almost never carry rabies."Almost never carry rabies"? That's good to know with a wife and two kids in the house. On the off chance this is one of those rare possum WITH rabies, I should ignore that possibility because they are "gentle" and "slow-moving"?
You might as well have been stabbing and dismembering a human baby for all the danger that possum posed to you.Human babies don't have sharp teeth.
You imagine yourself a warrior? Practice the first rule: Know your enemy.I wasn't planning on having a possum as a house guest. Next time, I will be better prepared. For example, did you know that possum like carrion? Grab an old piece of meat, put it on a large mousetrap, and SNAP! Possum problem solved.
And if you did know your "enemy", you'd realize you slowly tortured the very essence of innocence.I don't normally associate "innocence" with an animal which has the same dietary habits as buzzards.
...nothing in your story described any behavior remotely threatening to you or your [wife] yet you slowly vivisected this unfortunate, harmless animal that, like you, has lungs, liver, kidneys, a heart....and, like you, experiences fear, trauma,...and pain.So do rats and bats, but I don't want them in my house either.
The commenter then goes off into a long rant about the difference between foolishness and bravery. My original reply bears repeating:
Anonymous (if that is your real name), you obviously missed the humor in this. Are you familiar with a concept called "irony"?I should add there is nothing brave in leaving anonymous comments on the Internet either.
You are absolutely correct in stating there is nothing brave in killing a possum. A possum is vermin, much like a rat, hence the irony. I added the "bravery" aspect to this post in order to play up the irony of the situation.