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August 1, 2011 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Drought dogs wild life, 2 legged and 4 legged.

With a month of wilting 100 degree weather, willy wildlife are willing to work together, but not so with 2 legged wimpy wock and wollers- oops, that’s rock and rollers.

The stars are usually bright in Texas, but apparently not this time in Dallas. The Kings of Leon simply decided to stop simmering and abdicated their concert. Lead singer Caleb Followill wandered incoherently around the stage for a while – blaming the heat for his odd condition. He reportedly said, “My voice is completely 100 percent wrong. I’m sorry… Do you know what? I’m going to drink some beer and I’m going to drink some tequila and I’m going to have a good time, and for the record I’m not drunk… I’m just f**king hot.” Then he rambled on: “I’m about to fall down here because I’m so goddamn hot. I have no goddamn idea what the f**k is going on, all I know is that I’m married to the prettiest f**king girl in the whole world.”(New wife, Lily Aldridge was probably more embarrassed than flattered by his behavior). Caleb left the stage – apparently saying he was going to vomit. He promised to return and sing more songs, but he didn’t. When the band realized that he wasn’t coming back, band member/brother Jared apologized (video of end of concert) to the audience for ending the concert. Later he also sent out tweets later laying the blame squarely on Caleb and not the band.

Yeah, it was hot. The scorching summer hasn’t exactly been a secret. So don’t claim: “Surprise!” Couldn’t have been the beer and tequila? Ask any juvenile what happens if you throw down the alcohol – heat or not. (High school parties:  show up after spending lots of time getting all dressed-up, drink, drink, drink, throw-up, go home.) Time to grow up. The tough get going when the going gets tough. Both the Dallas and Houston concerts have been rescheduled – if anyone cares.

While the wild night life in Dallas flamed out, the real wildlife of Texas is doing some strategic thinking to survive.  Between the drought and the wildfire fighters being forced to drain cattle tanks and local ponds,water has become increasingly hard to find. David Hailey (Texas Parks and Wildlife Department) reports that he saw  two deer and a bobcat drinking in the middle of the day from the same small watering hole. “It’s like they have a truce because it’s so dry.” Shannon Tomkins, a writer of the outdoors, keeps an eye on the fresh water at the edge of the woods near his place. There’s been a constant parade of animals risking being spotted in broad daylight out of protective underbrush. An occurrence noticed by a couple of owls and a Cooper’s hawk who have relocated nearby watching for prey – unfortunately rather successfully. One of his latest visitors was a wood rat. A sad scene on that day of 100 degree temps: the little guy was floating face down in the pan. Didn’t appear to be planking. But it was! Someone went out to freshen the water for other critters, and was sunned when the wood rat splashed out of the water and darted off to the safety of the brush. Smart little guy was just trying to stay cool!

Just a note to those watering landscape, animals and snakes are turning up in odd places during the day – even though they are usually only seen at twilight or night. (Here’s the obligatory cute picture of desperate mother doe leading baby fawn to backyard wading pool.) As animals become more desperate, there’s more risk of them getting hit by a car or raising the fury of humans. Humans should be wary, too. Heat and desperation makes everything cranky. Snake bites in the Austin area alone are up from 183 last year to a whopping 267 cases so far. Is Mother nature may be trying to help critters out until the rains come? Perhaps the news of a big jump in confirmed rabies-infected animals and the risk to humans by close animal encounters will back people off enough to give the small creatures a chance to grab a bite to eat and a sip of water. Just maybe enough to get them through another day.

The Texas summer melt down has strummed both music men and beast. Odd the animal species seem to be showing more sense than the one at the top of the food chain.


Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

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