Monday, October 01, 2007

A Eulogy of Sorts

Now, in my time as a runner, I've seen a lot of wildlife on the streets and on the trails. I've seen dead deer, and I've seen live deer (up close and personal, might I add). I've seen foxes, squirrels, and chipmunks, and even a mouse or two. I've seen birds of all shapes and sizes, and swarms of dragonflies that could have carried me away.

Today, I saw a frog. It could have been a toad, I'm not sure. I was moving too fast, and my timing was a bit off, and it turns out I didn't recognize it as an actual living thing until it was, um, er, underfoot. The fact that it was amphibious and not plantlike was further confirmed by the disconcerting squishing that happened as my Ryka landed squarely on Frog/ Toad.

To the friends and family of Mr./Ms. Frog/ Toad: I am sorry for the unintentional death of your loved one. I'm certain he/ she was dear to you. Quite a bit of hopping done in his/her day, I'm sure. You may retrieve his/ her body on the Oak Leaf Trail, somewhere between 116th St and Beloit Rd, so that funeral services may be held.

In my own defense: It is autumn in Wisconsin. This means that the trails are littered with fallen leaves and other items of nature. The amphibian with whom I crossed paths blended in quite nicely with all of said fallen leaves, and was virtually impossible to distinguish until i was nearly on top of it. That said, the tympanum of amphibians such as frogs and toads are rather close to the ground, and when I run, I do tend to cause substantial vibrations in the pavement. if Mr. or Ms. F/T had been at all with it, he/ she would have hopped out of the way long before I arrived. If one were to ponder that fact for just a moment, one might come to the conclusion that maybe Mr./ Ms. F/T had a death wish of sorts. unhappy with the home life, perhaps? Burrow troubles?

I feel awful, really I do. I promise to look a little more closely at the ground from now on. but really, you little guys need to stay out of the way. Get hopping!