I’m a bad person.

Do you ever have those times, times when you’re trying to do something right, but it’s like gremlins are dancing around your heels tugging at your pants, sending you off balance, pulling on tablecloths to knock over china, making things you didn’t mean to say out loud actually leave your mouth? When foibles and follies follow you like a bad credit report and you feel like some karmic hairstylist gave your aura a mullet?

Ever have those times?

And then, there’s the feeling guilty. Or stupid. Or…like a big fat snail killer.

It started out so innocently. Watering the flowers.

I had noticed that something was snacking on one of my hydrangeas. And I’m not naive. I know that it’s a herd of snails. (Pack of snails? Pride of snails? Bevy of snails? Camp of snails? Scurry of snails? Improbability of snails?) But it’s not like I have any real interest in donning a netted safari hat and hunting the snails down. And I’m not a huge fan of the pellets. So mostly I ignore them.

But today, as I was watering, thinking innocent non-snail-killing thoughts, I noticed one steadfastly clinging to the underside of a leaf. ON the hydrangea plant.

Ah ha! Exclaimed I. One varmint spotted.

My plan, pinch off the leaf and toss the leaf with its houseguest way down the sideyard where it will take him weeks to make his way back to my delicate little hydrangea.

So I yanked the leaf off the plant, and set to toss it when….something happened, I’m not sure what. The leaf slipped in my hand and tossing somehow became flinging, and the snail let go of the leaf, and then…well…I don’t have a photograph of the ensuing carnage, but here’s an artist’s rendering.

I have no idea what was going through the snails mind before he smashed into the fence, but I bet it was something along the lines of “I knew I should have taken that left turn at ALLLLGGGGGHAAAAAAAHHHH!!”

And for showing such reckless regard for life, even of the slimy variety, I hereby deduct: –8 Martha Points

Bringing my new total to: +26 Points

Santa’s not bringing me anything this year.

This post linked to the “Word Up, Yo!” Blog Hop, which won’t work here in WP.COM land, so hop back over to A Belle, A Bean and a Chicago Dog, Taming Insanity, or Mommy of a Monster to keep playing.


  1. My 3 yo has a strong affinity to all slimy varmints. She keeps them as pets and names them. Mostly all Shealagh.
    At the library we saw a snail crossing the path, we stopped to talk to it. On the way out someone had stepped on it. That was about 4 months ago. We have to stop to remember the snail everytime we pass the stop.
    I hope your grief is not as great.

    1. At the point where the snail when flying over towards the fence and smashed, I actually clamped my hand over my mouth in shock…

      But I did not set up a remembrance.

      And I think Shealagh is an excellent name for a snail. Er…for snails.

  2. I’m with KLZ. AND, I can see you vying for extra points by using last week’s word, too. Hmmm…clever.

    I really loved the “should have taken a left”! HA!

  3. I don’t think you should lose that many points for injuring and possibly killing a snail. Those nasty little things are currently eating my strawberries. But your story reminds me of when I was a kid fishing at my Grandpa’s house. Somehow I caught a crawdad instead of a fish and spent the next hour “fishing” with the crawdad as bait. Poor thing probably died from head injuries. Now THAT would lose me a whole bunch of points!! LOL

    1. I am cracking up thinking about a crawfish dying from repeat traumatic head injuries.

      Yes, torturing the bait is probably a good way to lose points.

  4. Wonderfully enough, I believe the collective noun for snails is an “escargatoire.” Quite like the idea of a pack of snails though – gives them a little hint of danger!

    1. We’ve got dangerous snails ’rounds these here parts.

      And…holy cow…it IS an escargatoire.

      My spell check doesn’t recognize that as a word. It doesn’t even have a suggestion.

      How pedestrian of my spell-check.

  5. Funny funny post! That’s one surprised looking critter! I think Martha is pretty bad-ass herself (especially when it comes to her Hydrangeas) and probably would have ADDED Martha points for your diligence.
    Hopefully his little snail friends were watching and they’re all, “Holy hydrangea, when did this neighborhood get so rough? We’re outta here!”
    BTW – maybe you can redeem yourself and make escargot out of the carcass??

    1. Although I’m quite certain I could EARN points for making escargot out of the unintentional snail carcass, I am equally sure I don’t WANT to.

      And I hope you’re right and all the other snails have been frightened into fleeing.

      Which means, they’ll be out of my yard sometime around Christmas 2012.

  6. These comments are as funny as your post!

    And, sorry, but I’m really no friend to anything slimy. Slimy stuff just makes me think of, well, slimy stuff!

  7. If it had turned left it probably would have ended up in MY yard where it might have spent another couple of days on lush greens and then finally landed in the yardbin because I’m TIRED of these slimy fellows eating up my FOOD and I’ve finally totally LOST all of my COMPASSION for them (don’t tell my pre-teen).
    We both are just bad, creepy snail-murderes.
    I guess – we need wine.

  8. If the accidental massacre of snails is a foible, the I am the Slug Foible Queen. I love snails, but I have killed many without meaning to. It’s a serious fail.

    Still love you! Great use of the WOW! by the way.

    1. I am glad my friends can love despite my snailicide tendencies.

      And I didn’t realize that snail killing foibles was such an epidemic.

      I need to get out more.

    1. It turns out that it’s actually difficult to accurately represent a hysterical flying snail in Paint.

      I had to re-do his little eye-stalks like a dozen times.

  9. How many points do I lose if I say that all I can think of is how satisfying that little crunch must have been? I think there’s something wrong with me. In spite of that discovery, I’m glad I read this post because now I know the word “escargatoire.”

    1. And that’s just a word that you’re not going to come across unless someone hands it to you on a silver platter.

      Possibly with butter and garlic sauce.

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