The Perfect Present Predicament
Our nine-year old wants a rat for Christmas. Given our recent struggles with establishing boundaries for the rodents that inhabit our neighborhood, my husband, Cap’n Firepants, is loathe to grant this wish. He offered to give her a dead rat, but she has made it clear that this would not fulfill the requirements she expects from a pet.
Dimples’ Perfect Friend has a pet rat. Technically, she has two, since she and her brother each have one, and the rats share the same quarters (apparently one should not own just one rat, as it can get lonely). You might question how Perfect Friend can maintain that moniker given her imperfect pet choice. However, I have no problem with a rat that is not sneaking around my habitation or dying inside the walls.
Dimples has done everything right in trying to achieve her pet rat goal. She acquired several books on rats, studiously read them, and used Post-It notes to mark all of the applicable passages. She can tell you anything about rats. Except how to keep them out of our house.
Cap’n Firepants had a brilliant idea. He suggested that Perfect Friend spend the night, bringing along her Perfect Rat. You might think he was being quite open-minded. However, he was hoping, I think, that Dimples would realize a rat is not an ideal pet in a household with two nervous dogs – one of whom paces and pants heavily whenever something out of the ordinary occurs, and the other of whom who attempts to rip the heads off any beasts that have the bad luck of falling within his path.
Perfect Friend brought Perfect Rat in his traveling cage, and set him up in Dimples’ room. The dogs had no clue Perfect Rat was in the house. In retrospect, that should have been no surprise, seeing as how they have been absolutely no help in deterring any of the other rodents who have breached our heavily fortified enemy lines. But the Cap’n still had a backup plan. Knowing that rats are nocturnal, he was certain that Dimples would go crazy trying to sleep with Perfect Rat around.
No such luck. Not a creature stirred that night – not even the rat, according to Dimples. So, the Cap’n had to finally confess to Dimples the one reason no rat would ever be a pet in the Firepants household. “It’s the tail,” he said. “I just can’t get over the tail.”
Dimples, who has her heart set on a rat (no hamster, gerbil, or guinea pig will do) and the Cap’n, who has his heart set against it, are at an impasse.
I know how Dimples feels, as I was in a similar situation last Christmas, hoping for a bulldog puppy under the tree. No other gift, no matter how great, would substitute. It wasn’t until the day after Christmas, however, when we made a family trip to the pet store to get Dimples a fish, that Cap’n Firepants relented, and helped to make my Christmas wish come true.
Dimples is probably hoping for a repeat of last year’s post-Christmas pet presentation. There’s one major difference, though.
Posted on December 23, 2011, in Cap'n Firepants, Children, Dimples, Dogs, Family, Humor, Parenting, Wonderbutt and tagged bulldog, Cap'n Firepants, Christmas, Dimples, humor, pet, present, rat, wonderbutt. Bookmark the permalink. 33 Comments.