This spring, we’ve been waging a desperate battle to save our vegetable garden from the ravages of ravenous bunnies. As of
yesterday, the score was:
Verminous Bunnies: 4
Schuh/Claus & Sanders: 1
Wads of dog hair wrapped around mothballs didn't work – for me or the rabbits -
and I believe these critters actually like cayenne pepper. Our last two sorties
were carried out using noxious fumes supplied by Liquid Fence (think rotten
eggs and moose urine). This defense was only marginally successful due to the
deluge of rain we received immediately after each expensive application. But
now we're taking the battle to a whole new level.
In the last week, the rabbits have started eating my husband’s precious
houseplants, plants we place on the patio every summer to soak up the sunshine.
The bunnies only eat the stems, like we eat celery, then casually spit out the
leaves in a little pile around the plant. This is really upsetting Ben. He
nurtures these plants in sickness and in health, gives them injections of
vitamin B, waters them lovingly, and in general has coaxed most of them into
growing up to be strapping 10 foot trees. He loves these plants. With all his
heart. Get the idea? His bottom lip quivered at every leaf he found on the
ground this week.
Last night was the last straw. When Ben got home from work, I tried to shield
him from the gruesome sight on the patio. But once he saw the long, still
beautiful green vine brutally severed from the main stalk and lying on the
gray, cold (OK, I know it's June, but it sounds better this way) cement, he
went truly ballistic. This time one rabbit had gone too far. It had callously
chewed a few feet off the plant and dined on only the tastiest, most tender
stems, leaving the rest to wither. When Ben checked closer, he found another
3-foot section of the same plant in the same condition.
Ben pondered the situation over three BV & 7's at our favorite watering
hole. He pondered a little longer over a couple of shots of Jagermeister.
Finally he shouted, "I've got it!" startling several nearby bar
patrons. We paid the tab and hurried home.
Ben rummaged through the bedroom closet, the garage, the buffet and various
drawers in the kitchen, dropping his findings on the living room floor. I sat
on the sofa, musing at the rapidly accumulating pile of odd items: One roll of
gray electrical wire, one laser thingy with round panel, aluminum foil, tape,
metal reflector, alarm clock, one C battery, one BB gun, wire nuts, and wire
clippers. What was he going to do with this stuff?
It didn't take long to find out. Ben cut lengths of wire, stripped the ends,
jimmied the battery with foil and packing tape, hooked it up to the alarm clock
and wired the whole mess with the laser on one strand and the reflector on the
"Here," he said, "Pass your hand in front of the laser."
I did and the alarm battered our ears. He hurried to align the panel with the
laser. Blessed silence. I passed my hand between them again - BRRINNNGGG!
again, but this time it only lasted as long as my hand was in front of it.
The plan? Well, as of 6:30 this morning, Ben was hunched on the patio in his
robe, hairy little backside to the breeze, figuring out the placement of wires,
laser and panel so that no wascally wabbit could step foot on the patio without
alerting the mighty hunter inside the house. A few practice shots from the back
of the couch proved he'll have to aim a little low and to the left. I'm not
sure it would have really taken 10 pumps of the BB gun to kill the insurance
policy booklet he used as a target, but I'm pretty sure it will take care of
He swears that we're having Braised Rabbit with Peppers and Mushrooms for
supper tonight. However, when I left for work at 7:30 this morning, he was
still trying to figure out how to sneak up on the bunnies to get a good shot
once they set off the alarm.
I checked his progress at lunchtime.
"Hey, Ben, you should set up a counter for it so that if you're not home
you can see how many times the laser was tripped."
Self-satisfaction oozed over the phone. "Already figured it out. I rigged
it so the second hand on the alarm clock will move one second each time the
laser trips. Otherwise, it doesn't move."
Do you believe this guy?
So is Ben the real MacGyver, as so many of our friends insist? Or is he a cross
between Elmer Fudd and Wile E. Coyote? And why does the word 'ACME' keep
coming to mind? Shhhhhh . . . be Vewy, Vewy Qwiet . . .
TH - TH - TH - THAT'S ALL, FOLKS!!