The Short-Tailed Possum

Yesterday D held and played with a baby short-tailed possum at an exotic pet store in Newburg.  She quickly worked herself into a state over getting one.  We sat on the floor letting it run up and down our arms and lick our fingers; TC was concerned as he watched from a distance.  He was a cute little bugger (the possum) – affectionate, playful, highly intelligent, low maintainance and with a longer lifespan than a pet rat.  On the ride home D pretended to hold and care for her possum, which she named Cutie-face.  She was convinced she’d get the possum for her sixth birthday (in one month).  We said no.  Her seventh birthday then?  No.  Six and a half?  No.  In two days?  No.  Tomorrow????  Each answer fueled her obsession.  After dinner she lead me to the computer where I was to begin research on her new pet.  Meanwhile, she busied herself by filling a plastic bin with tissue paper (for nesting) and toys (to fight boredom).  Eventually, she and Z dragged chairs into the room and sat next to me demanding that I click on this picture and that.  TC intervened.  “We will not get another pet for a long, long, long time.  Years,” he said.  D skillfully yes’ed him, adding a toy train to the bin.  At bedtime we were instructed to “talk about it” and get back to her in the morning. 

“We’re not getting one,” we both said.

“I know, but just talk about it.  You two: just talk.”

She got out of bed a dozen times to confirm that we were talking about it and even cried that someone would buy her possum if we didn’t hurry back.  This morning it started all over again.  

Unless I break a deeply ingrained pattern of my youth, family history dictates that I will purchase a short-tailed possum by summer’s end thus fulfilling the karmic contract (and the wish of my parents) that I would one day have a child just like me.       

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11 responses to “The Short-Tailed Possum

  1. Sorry Shan–I can’t stop smiling from that last paragraph. Really warmed my heart when I suspect you said it out of frustration.

    I’m not a fan of rodent pets. Might be cute when they’re not yours, but not so cute you’re the one who ends up being it’s caretaker since your kids are too young to feed and care. Just call me ba-hum-possum.

    Maybe you can distract her by buying Simon a ugly rat mask and wrapping his tail with tape?
    🙂

  2. If you get a baby possum, I am never coming over again. Tell her Grandma Joe just cannot handle such a nasty little creature in her house.
    My goodness, where does this stuff come from?
    They are just a giant cockroach in my opinion. But, hey, that’s just me.
    jb

  3. I can absolutely see D doing this. Not unlike her facination with the toy snake at the toy store down town. Go for it! Break down, let that possum into your heart! Who knows you might just start a new trend in the neighborhood. No Molly is not getting one!!!!

  4. a possum belongs in the outside world hanging from a tree by its tail. (they do that, right?) not in a cage (or lovingly decorated box) inside the house. you said no. you even pretended to talk about it further (were you pretending?!) still no. no no no no no!

  5. Actually, Magical, these particular possums aren’t able to hang by their tails. They’re about the same size as a domestic rat, but with bigger ears and a narrower snout. In their native countries (South America, Australia, New Zealand, etc.) they’re regarded as pests.

    I’ve enlisted the help of a sponsor (jb) to stop us from making this purchase. But, if you’re up for the job, we could use a second sponsor, especially with people like Lori (The Enabler) out there. Thank you for your support.

  6. Things that I would do before allowing a “pet” ‘possum in my house:
    1.Pluck out all of my eyelashes
    2.Swim in the Willamette River
    3.Vote Republican
    4.Give up ice cream
    5.Listen to a Tiffany CD on repeat for an entire year

    There is Nothing I detest/fear/am repelled by as much as Rats. I can’t imagine that something that is “about the same size [as aforementioned rodent] but with bigger ears (the better to hear you with, my dear?) and a narrower snout” will be appreciably less horrifying to me!

    I am confident that I could not comfortably share a room with it; not sure about being in the house. That said, I suppose jb and I can have a lovely visit with each other on the porch.

  7. Magical Sarah

    tiffany for an entire year? i think 2kool4skool is the right (2nd) sponsor for you! but happily, i will oblige to join the wagon. children should have more sadness and defeat in their lives, i say. boo, hiss, possum-pets.

  8. Gramdma-bo-Grandma

    Richie says, “Have you considered a long-tailed possum?” By the way – are we talking about an OPOSSUM?

  9. I vote for a mongoose or wombat or a big whte rock.

  10. how about the dog you already have and the hermit crabs?! let’s call the urban pet sanctuary good! unless, you absolutely fall in love with a rock. i cannot stand between a girl and her…. rock.

  11. I am too late to offer advice on this particular subject. Or am I? Did you breakdown and get one or did you manage to hold out? Possum update please.

    xo

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