You might think that after the gerbil moves out the game is over. Not so. They are still plenty of opportunities for high-jinx, if you are diligent and know how to find them.
Some time may have elapsed since our last bit of gerbil coverage, but make no mistake. The little fellar is still out there.
- The ignominy of Sherlock Holmes’ greatest defeat, The Adventure of the Raspberry Bar. This remains open in the cold case files.
- The Gerbil Research Institute for Parental Edification published the Gerbil Nutritional Pyramid.
- The gerbil still has absolutely no idea how or why the blinds in his old room spontaneously were destroyed. (Broken in half.) And absolutely no explanation why coins were found on the ground outside under the room’s window. After the discovery of new elements on the periodic table this is probably one of the great mysteries of modern science. Personally I think they’ll find the blinds were broken by an element with 255 neutrons which I have dubbed Gerbilenium.
There was a period of time where the gerbil disappeared and we thought that our bout of False Empty Nest Syndrome (FENS) woes were finally over, but it was a false alarm. The case has merely shifted to an intermittent condition.
In non-technical jargon, it settled down into an uneasy truce with the occasional flare up.
During the gerbil’s dark side of the moon phase, there was no communication or sightings for an extended period of time. We did not know where the gerbil lived and had no information about his status. The silence from the gerbil was deafening and almost felt punitive in nature, at least to my wife.
Finally the gerbil secreted from hiding and became a part of our lives again. After an extended period of give and take, a loose routine was established. The gerbil would maintain extremely loose contact on an irregular basis and would come to visit periodically. These visits occur about once every 3 to 4 weeks.
A typical gerbil visit consists of a home-cooked meal, a load of laundry, an almost total disruption of our Netflix queue, frequent visits to our backyard, intermittent periods of seclusion in his old room, and sleepovers on our sofa.
I do tend to get rather irritated when I wake up the next morning and my LCD flatscreen TV and the home stereo have been left on all night. I don’t particularly enjoy my home entertainment system being used as a nightlight. Especially after my last TV died and we went without for a whole year. This sort of thing gets my dander up.
That’s a hallmark of a gerbil visit. There is remarkably little consideration for house rules and things that we deem to be of importance. The gerbil is not a creature that easily conforms. There’s not much in the way of thoughtful consideration, either. Take the initiative and do a chore? An insignificant bit to help out? Not unless directly asked. And, when left alone, it will finish off the coffee. Good to the last drop! Oh, you wanted some more? Fail whale!
The relative calm of this new routine of infrequent gerbil visits is deceptive. There are still games afoot. Perhaps not worthy of telling in the Holmesian style but worth mentioning.
The gerbil still seems totally incapable of speaking the truth about matters big and small. We think we’ve isolated the gene in gerbil DNA that controls this behavior. It is theoretically possible that it will self-mutate in the future. Hope is not a word I ever use lightly.
In one case, I had purchased a 24-ounce can of beer for $1.19 and as a result was in an extremely excitable state. I also purchased a 24-ounce can of Mike’s Hard Lemonade for my wife. After a gerbil visit the can of hard lemonade had turned up missing. My wife and I conferred and quickly learned that neither of us was responsible. And there had been no one in the house since the cans had arrived. No one, of course, except the gerbil.
When asked about it, the gerbil denied everything. For the piece de resistance, he exclaimed, “Of course you’d make me a suspect in this!” The case remains unsolved.
In another incident, the gerbil recently suffered a fairly severe. He was riding in a car, his arm was hanging out the window, and the gerbil associate behind the wheel drove the car into a ditch. (Keen observers will note this as a Single Vehicle Accident.) The gerbil’s arm was damaged between the side of the car and planet Earth. He has since recovered after a few visits with Doctor Mom. And also the emergency room.
An event like this prompts many questions. Who was driving? Was intoxication a factor? Was there insurance? The gerbil weaved many responses, most of which quickly unraveled under the light of day. For reasons unknown it turned out he lied about who was driving. What would motivate such a lie? We’re not sure. Either it’s just garden variety gerbil response to question-based stimuli or there was some more nefarious purpose. We still don’t know. But lies like that throw a cloud of suspicion on all the information he provided regarding the incident.
Other lies also unraveled such as issues regarding insurance and paying for medical treatments. My wife had used a doctor friend to pull some strings and get him treated. He then stiffed them on the bill. My wife feels this reflects poorly on her. The gerbil responded by telling lie upon lie, assuring her that the matter had been settled.
He still gets mail at our house, his permanent mailing address. The clinic had sent him a letter. My wife resisted the urge to open it. After a gerbil visit, my wife noticed the letter will still on the counter, but it had been opened. A quick look confirmed yet another lie. It’s almost like the little fellar wants to get caught. Typical gerbil behavior!
As such, the Gerbil Life Cycle has been amended with this new information that has come to light regarding medical billing:
- Drop out of high school
- Never have job
- Go on food stamps
- Obtain medical marijuana card
- Never get GED
- *NEW* Accrue medical bills and blow them off
Our work in the gerbil field continues unabated. We will continue to bring you further reports and more information becomes available.