Tuesday, February 23, 2010


“Honey, I think Bob’s here.”
“Is it Bob or George?”
“Well, I think it’s Bob, but I’m not sure. They all look alike to me.”
“George is a little darker.”
“I don’t know. Darker? Lighter? They’re pretty much the same.”
“Well, is he staying by the tree or coming up to the door?”
“He’s sort of in between the two, just standing there.”
“Has he seen you?”
“How would I know? It’s not like he’s standing there waving at me. He’s just standing there. Looking at the house.”
“So walk to the door so he can see you.”
“I’m sure he sees me but he’s still just standing there.”
“Did you unlock the door?”
“I’m doing it now.”
“What did he do?”
“He went back by the tree.”
“That’s George. He doesn’t like to come to the door. He wants you to go out to him.”
“No, he wants you to go out to him. He doesn’t really know me.”
“Okay. I’m coming.”

“Well good morning George. How are you?”
George says nothing. Just stands there by the tree, waiting.
“Want some Cheerios, George?”
Still, just stands there silently, waiting.
“Here you go, George. Enjoy.”
George takes his Cheerios, sits and eats by the tree, saying nothing. When he finishes, he leaves.

Next day.
“Honey, Bob’s here.”
“How do you know it’s Bob?”
“Because he’s coming right up to the door, looking in and waiting.”
“I’ll be there in a minute.”
“He’s knocking on the glass.”
“Tell him I’ll be right there.”
“You want me to talk to him? I don’t think so. He likes it when you talk to him.”
“I’m coming.”

“Hey Bob. Wanna peanut?”
Bob puts out his hand and takes the peanut, making quick nothing of the shell and popping the treat in his mouth.
He puts his hand on my knee.
“Want another one?”
He did, and made short order of that one as well.
Bob will typically go through between five and ten peanuts before he leaves. And after each one he politely taps me on the knee and waits.

I never thought I’d feed squirrels on our back patio, much less know the difference between a couple of them or give them names. Bob was, of course, my favorite. He was tame enough to come right up and sit next to me, waiting for his treat. He also ate a lot more treats than George, mainly because he was willing to risk coming up to the door, knock, and wait. And that was the cutest part of Bob. He would wait in the tree until he would see us moving in the kitchen, and would come up to the patio door, stand upright on the glass, and actually “knock” on the door with one of his paws until we opened the door to give him his peanut. So cute.

So what is life’s little lesson in this tale of animal endearment?
Heck if I know. I just thought it was a cute story worth sharing.
Oh wait. Right. That’s the lesson.
Sometimes, “cute” is just as worthy of sharing as “profound.”
That’s the lesson?
Okay, how about this …
If you want to eat better in life, don’t just stand by the tree. Walk up to that door of opportunity, knock and wait for your treat.
How’s that?

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