An oppossum walks into a house...

So here's how it went down. It's Wednesday night. Chris and I have returned from a nice summer eve's jaunt around the hood. We're relaxing on the couch, watching an episode of The Closer on my laptop when we hear this noise... It seems to be coming from the entertainment center. But that's weird, right? There are no doors on it. Every time we mute or pause the show, the noise stops.

Then, there it is again. Yep. It's coming from the entertainment center. Suddenly, it dawns on me. Check the drawers. By which I mean, Chris, check the drawers. I'm thinking maybe there's a mouse in there, rattling around a bit. Chris opens the drawer and immediately jumps back, slams it shut and starts laughing.

"There's a baby possum in our entertainment center," he says. A baby possum with 8,000 sharp little teeth it displayed the minute we opened the drawer.

Thus begging the bigger question: what now? We put a call into the local police department, who pass our number onto Animal Control. In the meantime, I surf the internet for valuable information about getting an oppossum out of one's entertainment center. It turns out that despite there being seven zillion web pages, there doesn't seem to be one addressing this specific topic.

Of course, as it's all going down, there's another question -- or series of questions -- emerging. Like, what the HELL? Or, how on EARTH did it get there? Inspector Carey declares, "It all makes sense now." What makes sense now? For a few days now, he's discovered small poo behind the toilet and assumed it was one of the cats freaking out. Plus, the cats have been going through a lot of food. And their water bowl has been turned over in the morning.

So, in other words, the oppossum has been living with us a while now. And why haven't the cats been freaking out? Because, my web research reveals, for some strange reason adult cats and oppossums have a thing going where they just kind of let each other be. I need to discuss this with my cats, because I don't have that "thing going."

Animal Control finally calls us and when I tell the woman on the phone that we have an oppossum in our entertainment center, she actually laughs. Out loud. For a while. When she stops, she suggests we try to get rid of it ourselves. "Open up the door. Then all you do is tie a string to the drawer and drag the drawer towards the front door and pull it outside."

Wow. That sounds so incredibly easy. And so unlikely. But she urges us to give it a shot and says she'll call back in a few minutes to see how it's going. I start to think that maybe we're just the world's biggest wusses and that if we were country folk, we'd open up the drawer, grab it by the tail and have it diced for stew before you can say, "Bob's your uncle."

But we're not country folk. Thus, we began to creat a Wall of Resistance in order to cut off any potential possum escape path between the drawer and the rest of the house. It consisted of: one coffee table, two plastic totes, one straw trash can, a plant and several cardboard boxes. Genius!

We haven't quite finished constructing our wall when the phone rings. It's Animal Control, checking back in. Turns out, they've had a change of heart. They'll come over and deal with the possum after all. We can relax. Relax? We just built a friggin' wall and there's a rodent in our furniture! People, we are ON FIRE!

Soon enough, two very kind and highly amused Animal Control officers come in holding a big pole with a loop on the end for grabbing all manner of fierce beasts. Lady Officer pops the drawer open and Guy Officer goes in for the possum, which suddenly seems to be smaller than I thought. He gets the loop around the possum and jumps out of the drawer and behind the entertainment center.

Now, I'm not someone who likes to video tape things. I've never dreamed of capturing the strange moments of my life in the hopes that Bob Saget will one day pick me as the grand winner. But if I'd had a video camera, I'd have captured every moment of the comedy of errors that ensued as four adults tried to chase a baby possum around our living room for five minutes.

Eventually, the intruder was captured. Caught in the loop at the end of the pole, he was released into the yard and quickly scurried off, looking (truth be told) kind of cute and li'l. We thanked the Officers kindly and they rode off into the night, onto the next animal emergency.

The mystery of how the oppossum got into our house in the first place is still baffling us. We never leave the doors or the windows open, as the cats would get out. And we can only guess that maybe somewhere in the basement there's a hole that desperately needs plugged.

And in the meantime, no dark corner of this little home will go unexplored. By Chris. I mean by Chris.

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