17. December 2005 · Comments Off on The Lesser of Two Weevils · Categories: Ain't That America?, Domestic, General

So, my dearly beloved and somewhat over-protective daughter has put it to me… given that in the row of about twelve or fourteen houses in which I live contains only three houses (one on either end, and one in the middle) which actually contain able-bodied males (and one of them appearing to fall in the weedy and academically ineffectual division of the male spectrum anyway), and that all the rest contain single women— widows, working single women, divorcees, single parents, most of us of a certain age— and given also that the neighborhood was plagued a couple of years ago by an intrusive peeping-tom (who managed to scare the living ***** out of some of my neighbors), given that someone once tried to jimmy the door of my house with a 16-in screwdriver, and a couple of someone elses’ tried to steal William’s Accura Integra right out of my driveway— and even though this is a really pretty safe neighborhood, with an active neighborhood patrolling scheme… she has laid down the law. I must have either a dog… or a gun. Judy, my neighbor, who lives vicariously through me has been insisting the same thing also (I Know Judy and Blondie have been collaborating on this, I just know it!)

I don’t want a gun, I know there are all sorts of reasons why I should, but I really don’t.

Dad had a couple of revolvers in the house when we were children, but they were kept locked away. I didn’t ever handle anything other than a BB-gun until I had been five or six years in the Air Force, and I never took small-arms training until another ten years after than and threatened with a TDY to the Magic Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. (It was with the standard Beretta. I have small hands, and to me the Beretta was so heavy I had to hold it with both hands to keep it steady enough to even squeeze off an accurate shot.)
But I don’t want to have to think that civil authority has been so degraded, that the soft power of the commune and neighborhood has been so destroyed that having a gun in the house is essential. I don’t want to acknowledge that things have become so horrible that we need to take this precaution. Call me a pacifist wuss, call me a freeloader on all my neighbors who do have guns, call me a starry-eyed optimist… but to have a gun in my house would mean to me that we have descended to the law of the jungle, that the SAPD is useless and ineffectual, that things have gone to the point where we cannot depend on civil compacts at all. I am just not at the point— just yet— where I can do that.

So, I will have the dog. She is very sweet, my daughter says, very well mannered and protective. I can’t begin to imagine how she will get along with the cats. I think I will call her “Lesser-Weevil”… because (to steal a line from “Master and Commander”… she will be the lesser of two evils. Although the cats might have a different opinion, of course.

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