Civilization is breaking down in my neighborhood.
When I left the house at 3:00 yesterday there was no sign and I didn’t notice it when I came back a couple of hours later. However by the time I left again for pre-St. Patrick’s Day shenanigans at 6:45, something had changed. Attached to the stop sign at the corner was a three-foot high piece of cardboard wrapped in plastic and duct taped to the sign’s metal pole. Clearly it was meant to resist weather and time. Where it might be more normal to see an invitation to an open house or a yard sale, this sign was a warning more suited to street corner zealots with the apocalypse on their minds.
COYOTES ARE AROUND HERE.
PLEASE DON’T LET YOUR PETS OUTSIDE OVERNIGHT.
The coyote apocalypse that is.
I could only sit in my car and wonder, “What the fuck happened now?”
There is always ample room for weirdness in my hood. Are there now roving packs of coyotes in my extremely NOT RURAL subdivision? (I am within two minutes of a multitude of major highways) If, yes, where are they hanging out? In the basement I don’t have? In the shitty apartments that the police are always raiding a block up the street? Do they camp at the Pee-Drinker’s house all day comparing urine scents? At dusk do they flow out of the sewers in bony waves of gray brown fur, snapping at the darkening sky in their lust for neighborhood pets?
Or is this a confused reference to drug coyotes? Are there hordes of border crossers wandering around the neighborhood after dark just waiting for that heroin balloon to pass? To kill time and to work off the edge from drugs slowly seeping into their blood streams, have they been noshing on tiny animals?
Either way, something horrible has happened to a neighbor’s pet. Someone on the street stumbled on to the horrific aftermath of someone/something’s nocturnal activities and it inspired them to put paint brush to cardboard and warn the world. But just the world exiting my street at this stop sign which does limit its message somewhat.
By the time I thought about the possibilities later, it was too late to text my next door neighbor to see if he was safe from feral animals. He is my partner in watching the neighborhood and shaking our heads in joined confusion/amazement at the goings on. Would Sick-Margaret, who feeds ALL of the stray cats in the world, have had the energy and initiative to make and tape up a sign? It is in front of her house on the corner.
Did something happen to the floofy little dog of my neighbor on the other side of me? Is Shirtless Roger now crafting signs? Does the Pee-Drinker have a vested interest in the welfare of neighborhood pets? And there ends the extent of who I know on my street.
A final option that may be more sinister than drug coyotes yet more logical than packs of wild dogs is werewolves.
Werewolves don’t need wooded areas or sewers to hide in until it’s time to swarm; they’re people during the day. They just go to work or vacuum or shop online. They can basically hang out in their houses somewhere on my street until it’s dark and time to dine out. (There is totally a eating ‘pussy’ joke here but werewolves are too serious of a problem to make jokes.)
So is it just one werewolf or a pack? Is it eating pets to stave off its hunger for bigger meatier game like people? Are there not enough people wandering the neighborhood after dark to make them worth hunting? I find that hard to believe, so this much be a werewolf with a strong sense of morality.
Which brings up the question, does it go full on animal mentality? Or does it maintain some of its human cognizance? Will it see the well-crafted sign and be offended? Hurt? Remorseful?
“Egads, I had no idea that was someone’s fur baby!! What have I done?!” Tiny werewolf tear. Tail tucked between legs.
Returning from my St. Pat’s party, I cruised through the streets, taking a slightly longer drive home on the lookout for more signs and, of course, werewolves.
This morning I texted my next door neighbor. He has not been attacked by animals or werewolves…as far as I know. It could have been anyone responding to me; I didn’t see him. He says he saw the deaf couple from down the street put the sign up yesterday.
I was all like “We have a deaf couple?!”
According to him, they have cats.
According to me, the sign is a misdirection tactic. They are the werewolves.