I’m not the only one who felt that ominous breeze. Nearby a chipmunk was sitting on a tree branch. From his lofty perch he eyed me and my decrepit tractor with disdain. He felt the same breeze. He sniffed the same wind. He knew too.
It had been a good year for critters. The oaks had produced stupendous amounts of acorns. Most of the seed bearing plants had done a good job too. The mower had actually run all summer long (an unprecedented event) and the grass had been kept manageably low. Thus the cats hadn’t had their usual cover from which they like to jump on God’s furry cleanup crew. In short there had been ample opportunity for an enterprising chipmunk to top off his nut based 401(k).
One chipmunk was different. He was a coddled beast. He had too much self esteem. He’d been given thirty seven consecutive blue ribbons for “most improved” in chipmunk school. He was confident in his belief that he was the best, most excellent, of all chipmunks ever. He desperately wanted an iPhone 5 so he could communicate this fact to the universe.
He perched on a tree branch and looked enviously at the house. “Why should I be outside when that two legged wanker has a whole house?” His furry brain reasoned. “I’ve got acorns but I know the humans have lots of dog food.” His brain seethed. “I could steal it from that lumbering wookie they keep in the house with them.”
Thinking of the dog, he chattered angrily. The clueless dog wandering around the yard heard the racket. The dog, being clueless, decided the best response was to bark at the clueless turkeys, which were the only thing more clueless than the dog. (This is what the dog did whenever it couldn’t think of anything else to do.)
Meanwhile the cats laid on the grass like beatniks and stoners. Actually they laid on the grass like beatniks that were stoned… or possibly beatniks that were dead. No, that’s not an adequate description. They laid around like cats; for nothing on God’s green earth is more indolent and lazy than a cat. The chickens, as always, pecked industriously amid the fallen leaves. The chipmunk hated them all.
“Fortunately,” thought the chipmunk, “I hate them all equally, which shows that I am without bias.” Though upon reflection the chipmunk had to admit to himself that he hated the cats just a little bit more than the others. He sighed; it was hard letting go of prejudices. He’d have to work on that.
Turning his attention away from the menagerie in the yard, he thought again of the human. He watched him crawl under the tractor for no apparent reason. Then the man banged his head on it’s iron belly. The man let fly with curses that practically melted the last bits of remaining paint on the machine. Was that why he crawled under there? Who would crawl under something simply for the purpose of hitting his head on it? Was it more fun to bash your head underneath the tractor? Was the top too soft? The chipmunk pondered this while the man crawled under the tractor again.
The man twisted a shiny metallic object until black liquid suddenly poured from the machine. This was interesting! The chipmunk had no idea the tractor had a chocolate center. The flow of liquid narrowly missed an old bucket and instead covered the man’s face. This caused another round of cursing. “What a moron!” thought the chipmunk, “nothing he does makes sense.” Finally the chipmunk had made his decision.
“He’s an idiot!” Declared the chipmunk. “Furthermore he doesn’t need that much stuff.” The chipmunk continued. “I need a warm house. I need food.” The chipmunk could scarcely contain himself. “Who are they to deny my rights!” The chipmunk was in a froth! “They are the 1%. Too rich. They have exploited us chipmunks for too long! We chipmunks are the 99%.” He stammered angrily. “In the name of justice and equality I shall take from that undeserving rich bastard what is rightfully mine!”
Full of righteous indignation, the chipmunk zoomed down the oak’s trunk, past the woodpile where he’d been loafing all summer, and under the porch. The cats in the yard neither moved nor considered the possibility of moving. The drafty old farmhouse posed no challenge to the clever creature. Within minutes he was in the basement. “This winter”, thought the chipmunk, “is going to be excellent!”