Alligator Meat

Why did the alligator cross the street? (Or try to?) For the same stupid reason that the chicken did. (Only the chicken made it.) I'm from the Northeast, and I've hit a few things in my life (or they've hit me): deer, raccoons, skunks, that sort of thing. The thud against the car is sickening (in the latter case so is the olfactory aftermath), but nothing in my colorful list of kills prepared me for what lurked behind those weird, little red lights (which I later understood to be eyes).

Split seconds later, the headlights clarify the nature of the thing over which I am about to barrel. Hold on tight to the steering wheel and mutter (incredulously), "Crocodile!" Then, (most incredulously), I feel it necessary to correct myself, "Alligator!" "Whatever; keep driving!"

Bizarre! Had this been the Everglades, or even Alligator Alley at eleven o'clock at night, it would be one thing, but here in the heart of watermelon, cattle, and citrus land?

In the remaining half-hour of the trip home, I struggle to put some order into this experience and draw out the inherent lessons (lurking like the red eyes--not immediately recognized) with which to edify myself. The best I can do, other than, "don't travel at night," is to ponder the unpredictability of what happens, and the play of timing and luck and that sort of thing.

Relieved to be home, I inspect for damage. Basically a fender-bender; however a flap of some part of the under-carriage has come loose, and for a moment I think I have dragged home the undead habius crocodile.

There is a part of my heart that beats to the likes of Edgar Allen Poe and Stephen King. Had I not, after all, offended some ancient rule of the swamp? An upsetting of the primordial cart? Alas, my tires had tread where angels wouldn't be caught dead, and now the evening would crank out that which had been unleashed.

I was to meet my untimely end in a car-port in central Florida, in the jaws of a runned-over, scaly, big reptile.

But no!

The reptilian revenge was verbal; from its snout came the unmistakable snide remark, "A woman driver!"

I turned on my heel and headed for the house. Once in the door I said, "See you later, Alligator!"


Alligator Meat Addendum....

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