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July 20, 2004

The Toad Botherer

Less than an hour before midnight, and Ngnat, for one reason and another, still had yet to go to sleep, so I let her come downstairs when she spotted a toad in the driveway from her window--a Fowler's, unless I miss my guess.

We went outside and discussed toad-related matters; what they ate, how big they got, and how to make them jump.

"You poke him in the rear," I told her, demonstrating the proper technique on the heretofore phlegmatic amphibian. It promptly jumped three or four times, then settled back down to outwait us.

Ngnat was intrigued, but she wasn't about to touch a toad with her finger, a toe, a bit of wood, or even a longish piece of pine straw. Finally, she found a twig of acceptable length, about six inches, and poked at the toad's rear end with that. It jumped again, then again, eliciting a series of girlish shrieks from the Ngnat. Poke. Jump. Shriek. Poke. Jump. Shriek.

Eventually I began to fear for the toad's mental outlook and bade my offspring cease. God only knows what kind of amphibious pyschological complexes are wrought by a toddler repeatedly poking at one's bum with a stick. After a couple more pokes, Ngnat acceded to my wishes, and Mr. Toad made his way off into the lawn.

After I promised that she could watch the driveway out her window in case he came back, she went back to bed. It's quiet now, but for all I know she's still looking. I'm afraid to check. If she is still awake I'll only arouse her further.

Posted by Bigwig at July 20, 2004 11:42 PM | TrackBack
Postscript:
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