country life

I found some cans of root beer in the fridge. I cracked one of them open and I’ve just been walking around the house drinking root beer. If I ever feel like going for a walk I can just walk around the house. The upstairs alone has six bedrooms.

I’m all set up with power, phone and dialup internet. Went down to the basement and turned the water pump on. The water ran a little rusty at first, so I left the tap on for a while and now it’s gone pretty clear.

I’ve just been walking around looking at things. Opening drawers at random. Here’s a bunch of pencils commemorating some royal visit in 1951. Here’s my dad’s physics exam from 1956. He scored a 95%. Smart guy.

You can mail me stuff at this address:
Philip Clark
P.O. Box 463
4670 Rte. 123
Chipman, NB E4A 3N6

I went into the village to get a box set up at the post office. “Oh, this fellow lives just up the road from you,” said the clerk.

She introduced me to Eugene McGinley. Turns out Eugene knew my dad. And Eugene’s father was good friends with my grandfather, whom I never knew. Eugene said he was a “delightful man.” Even though I’m new to living in this part of the world, I don’t think I’ll be anonymous.

I found out later that Eugene is actually the MLA for the region. Go Eugene!

Mail me stuff. I plan on sticking around here for a while, unless something crazy happens and I get offered a well-paying dreamy job back in Halifax. I can’t wait until the weather gets nicer… the Salmon River runs right through the backyard and I’ll be out there in a canoe every morning.

I was joking with my brother about opening a bed & breakfast at the house.

“Except then, I suppose I’d have to cook breakfast for all these people,” I said. “Maybe I’ll just open a ‘bed.'”

I’ll put a sign out by the road that says “Philly’s B & B” with the second “B” crossed out. “Welcome to Philly’s B.”

…OK, we got ourselves a little situation here, I walked into one of the upstairs rooms and heard a mouse poking around. Then he stuck his nose out, and that’s an awfully big mouse, holy shit, there’s a squirrel in my house. God damn it. I need B.A. Johnston to come to Chipman and punch this squirrel in the face for me.

The squirrel ran to hide behind a couple of old TV sets. I pulled the bedroom door closed tight. That squirrel can just chill out for a while until I figure out what to do with him.

Now that I don’t work in a bar anymore I have this urge to drink. I was poking around in the pantry and found a nearly-full bottle of Rawleigh’s Anti-Pain Oil, “not less than 69% alcohol.” Yeah, that oughta do it.

What I really want to do is christen the parlour by setting up some speakers and watching a DVD in there. I have a parlour now. If you visit me I’ll make tea.

I just called my parents in Saint John. It seems there are three options with the squirrel situation:

1) I can try to rig up some kind of trap–bait it with peanut butter and catch the squirrel and then take him and chuck him outside.
2) My mom suggested I try to clock him on the head with a broom.

I’m gonna go think it over while I watch The Shining.

18 thoughts on “country life

  1. Hey Philip,
    so are you still part of this Colour TV band or what? I just noticed they are playing tomorrow night and thought about going…
    Don’t kill the squirrel.

  2. Oh hell yes, I should mention that the Colour TV CD release party is tomorrow night at the Seahorse. I’m driving back for this, it’s going to be great. Not sure when we’ll be playing again because I’m in the country and Jim’s going on tour with The Holy Shroud. So I hope a lot of people come out.

    I’m gonna electrocute that squirrel and hang his little squirrelly corpse from my mic stand tomorrow night.

  3. Actually, Phil, there is another option to trapping that squirrel. My parents told me about this one. It’s kind of expensive, but it’s also very non-violent, and no mess to clean up, either. Go to, and type the word “pest” into their Search feature. In the results will be the product “Pest Chaser”. I got the smaller model, for $18.99. (Plus tax.) Actually, I got two. And I haven’t seen that damn mouse since, thank god. It will keep away all rodents with ultrasonic sound waves. Anyway, it works for me, and it works for my parents (keeps away mice and squirrels for sure).

    Good luck in your new place, have fun.

  4. My last apartment was massively infested with rats. My hippie landlord’s solution: one of those ultrasonic “pest-chaser” dealies. All it did was piss the rats off.

    I also would not reccomend the poison, unless you are partial to rotting-rodent-corpse-smell emanating from somewhere between yr walls or other such inacessible place.

    Also: once, after having run out of food halfway through a three-day winter camping trip way the hell out in the New Brunswickian wilds, I shot and ate a squirrel. It was like the chicken-wing version of rabbit. Afterwards, one of the guys I was with boiled the skull and fashioned from it a little squirrely-faced finger puppet.

    So hey Phillip, can I visit sometime in the summer to go fishing and drink anti-pain oil with you?

  5. Philippe –

    What’s Vickers doing through all this? Not his JOB, by the sound of it. I mean, I know he’s a city cat and all, but he’s gonna have to learn him some country ways. Like huntin’ squirrel.


  6. If you kill the squirrel I will come there and kill you. Please come pick me up in Toronto. I will stay for 2 weeks or so. We’ll make that movie. I’ll cook.

  7. Don’t kill the squirrel. Make a live trap. Or just buy one from Canadian Tire. They work. That way you can just go for a drive with the squirrel and go let him loose…far away from your house. Because if he got in once, he can get again.

  8. You will have to drive it far, far away. I once drove a mouse about 1km down the road and it was back within a few days. This will be bad for the squirrel, as it will not have any hidden stores of food where you drop it off, but if it is smart, perhaps it will find some….

  9. You know. I’ve thought this over and I think you should let the squirrel stay. You said so yourself, you have six bedrooms. Especially after krystal said that thing about the storage of food.

  10. Trap. If you poison him, he might die in a place where you can not easily retrieve his body. Use a humane trap. Then transport him to a location that is on the other side of a river from your location. Squirrels have a knack for finding their way back unless they cross a river.

  11. Good point about his food stores. You might just return him to the outdoors and just make sure you block his entry point into the house. Up to you though.

  12. I’m now concerned for your safety, Phil.

    By now, certainly, the squirrel is aware of your reluctance to kill it. At least, it over heard you taking a poll.

    Look, squirrels can climb poles, unless greased with vasoline, and then they just curse at you.

    You don’t want to be cursed at by a cute little furry thing. You don’t want it scrambling up your ungreased polls or poles.

    It’s already in kill or be killed mode.

    Perhaps if you expressed you love and affection for it your cat would get jealous and claw out the competition. There’s my idea.

    Good luck.

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