The Groundhog War

I’m at war with a groundhog.  For as long as I can remember, my mom has had a garden where she grows everything form potatoes, peas, and carrots to green beans, tomatoes, and raspberries.  No issues.  I do remember when I was younger her having issues with squirrels eating her strawberries and other crops, but it was not as annoying as this freakin’ groundhog.

Two years ago, we finally planted all the usual seeds and the, want for a better word, crops started to come in when I heard my mom gasp and shout, “what the hell is that.”  We all came scrambling down the hall to look through the window in our kitchen to see this beast that I thought was a beaver chomping away at some plant.  We spent days figuring out what it was, although, I’m sure my parents knew it was a groundhog right away…I was the one who kept stupidly saying it was a beaver.  This led to a summer of chasing the darn groundhog out of our garden and trying to trap him.  My uncle lent us some traps and we were told if we placed them where he usual ate (i.e. my mom’s peas) he would walk in and be stuck.  We could then drive him away so he could never find his way back….or drown him in the bathtub, either way…

Except this groundhog was smarter than most.  He never went into the trap; he would walk beside it and nudge it so the trap doors would fall…with him outside of it.  We only ever caught birds.

The next summer (last year), the groundhog came back.  This time, he came back with a vengeance.  He did more damage because while
he was eating up the plants in the garden, he was having fun digging tunnels under our driveway.  In fact, the tunnel he dug made part of our driveway collapse, causing us to have to get our whole driveway redone.  He even expanded his horizons by digging into our neighbors’ yards, causing two neighbors to each take down their sheds because he was “living” underneath them.  We had enough.  After extensive research, my neighbors got traps of their own; my parents invested in fox urine as a repellant to the groundhog; I got a bow and arrow and had daily target practice, preparing for battle; and my other neighbors lent my family their bb gun.  We were going to win!

Except we lost the second summer to the groundhog.  My neighbor’s traps failed, the urine washed away with the rain, and we never so much got a bb near him.  I did manage to hit him with an arrow (#score), but it only bounced off his blubber (did I mention it was a kids’ bow and arrow…non lethal); he came back within the hour.

So now, we enter the third year of this war.  We lost some battles, certainly, but our troops are preparing to take down this menace.  I got more arrows and a handy little quiver to store my arrows,  and I’ve perfected my battle strategy so I can have a better shot at him.  My neighbor’s cat has even joined me as an ally; every morning, it circles my mom’s garden, leaving it’s mark, and keeping an eye out for the groundhog.

As I write this, I have this vision of my neighborhood having a neighborhood meeting (which never happens…we don’t really talk to each other) about said groundhog and I can picture me reciting Amy Adams’ monologue from the film The Master:

Amy Adams, in The Master:

It just fits, doesn’t it?  Although, I guess we do have to be careful in our attack, because apparently a guy killed a young girl in Ohio because he thought she was a groundhog.  So all those suffering from this pest, double check who you’re shooting at: