Dream: Exterminate!


Finally, the day has arrived!

Our garden has been infested with poke-lizards at least as long as my son has been alive.
A few years ago we decided to get rid of them.

First haphazardly, then more methodically, we have been trapping them, sealing up the boundaries of our yard, and destroying the warrens they live in.

Now there is only one place left for them to hide.
Time to set off the lizard-bomb.

We will place it at the top of the hole.
Half of it will go down into the warren, rendering it unusable.
The other half will spread out and kill any poke-lizards that remain outside.

These bombs are expensive, and slightly dangerous.
They won’t kill any lizards hiding in other holes.
So we needed to wait until we got to the last one.

We rented an ultrasonic scanner to ensure that all the other warrens had already been filled in, or at least blocked.

I had used a bomb like this before, at work.
It nearly killed me.
But I learned.

Poke-lizards are poisonous.
Letting them live is also dangerous.
We will never be safe until they are gone.
It is time take back dominion over our territory.
Rather than always living in fear.

I am sad that my son had to live with this.
But also grateful for the chance to teach him.

Most people don’t even want to admit poke-lizards exist.
Even though they kill thousands every year.
Folks just subconsciously avoid anywhere a poke-lizard might be hiding.
And pass that aversion on to their children.

I’m told there are professional exterminators in the Midwest.
But none in California.
We had to do everything on our own.

We got to do everything on my own.
My son will be a world-class exterminator when this is done.
It would make a great college admission essay.
But only if the school isn’t run by poke-skeptics.

We seal up the women and dogs inside the house.
This is man’s work.
We put on “bunny” containment suits.
Time to get to work.


We check the wind, and weather forecast.
Place the bomb on top of the hole.
Go hide behind the bike shed.

We count down.

I let my son push the button.


It makes an emotionally-satisfying noise.
Like the click of a photograph.
A fitting end to a long-running saga.

We scour the yard for any last hidden poke-lizards that were killed.
We find the last one.
It is bright red, with a bow-tie shaped head.
Rather cartoony.

I wonder if that is a side-effect of the poison.
Or perhaps we never saw one stationary and up close.

It doesn’t matter.
At last, it is over.

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