The Neighborhood Bitch

29 Aug

During a recent visit to my parents house in L.A., I strolled through my old neighborhood and brooded over my mom’s declining health, the challenges my dad faced as her caretaker, and the Sanka coffee substitute I’d resigned myself to drinking with breakfast.

Walking alone, deep in thought, I was startled to see a stranger standing in the middle of the road.   Although I didn’t know her, I knew her type—the chiseled face, heavy coat, yellow eyes . . .she was a loner without a pack.

This bitch was a coyote.  And she was stopped dead in her tracks.

We sized each other up:  She’s old.  She’s dirty.  She’s mangy.  I read her thoughts.

My take on her:  She’s young.  She’s fast.  She’s hungry.

I racked my brain for anything I’d learned in Girl Scouts that might prove useful in this situation.   I remembered how to build personal skills, how to improve self-esteem, and the Girl Scout handshake, but damned if I could recall a single thing about how to fend off a wild animal.

Screaming would be futile.  Thanks to the tumultuous marriage of John and Freida Brightman at the top of the hill, neighbors had long ago learned to ignore any yelling coming from up the street.

I could take on the bitch. After all, she was on the small side.

But, then again, so was I . . .

After catching a glimpse of her teeth, I knew instantly I’d win hands down—if this were a Crest tooth whitener competition.  But in a head-to-head battle, my root canal treated molars wouldn’t stand a chance against those razor sharp fangs.

I was defenseless.

Although I carried a cell phone, I doubted she’d care if I threatened to call the police:   “Listen, bitch.  I just dialed 911 and the cops are on their way.”  [Teeth bearing down on my throat] “They’ll be here any min . . .”

By the time they’d arrive, I’d be a pile of bones.

So I did the only thing I knew how to do.   I ran like hell and screamed like a little girl all the way home.

I bolted into my parent’s kitchen, gasping for breath. “Coyote. . . huge . . . fangs . . .”

“You ran into Lola?” said my mom, barely looking up from her newspaper.


“The coyote who likes to hang around here.  She’s harmless.  I just shake my cane at her and she runs off.”

I stared at my mom, slack-jawed.

She looked up and noticed I was shaking.  “Oh, honey, did she really scare you?   Sit down and relax,” she said.  “I’ll make you a fresh cup of Sanka . . .”

20 Responses to “The Neighborhood Bitch”

  1. sportsattitudes August 29, 2011 at 3:13 pm #

    The first thing I would have done was look for anything with the name ACME on it as anything Wile E. Coyote bought from them always backfired when trying to catch the Road Runner. (since my advice is based on cartoon characters, it can be safely assumed Lola would have eaten me whole were she doing more than just “hang around” the neighborhood…)

  2. Main Street Musings August 29, 2011 at 3:17 pm #

    No doubt the dynamite would have backfired!

  3. Krista Fuller August 29, 2011 at 3:30 pm #

    Only YOU can find humor in an encounter with a wild animal! Love it!

    • Main Street Musings August 29, 2011 at 3:34 pm #

      It took some time (and some xanax) to find the humor in that one. 🙂

      • Stephanie August 29, 2011 at 5:38 pm #

        I’m guessing Lola was the excuse for the Xanax! 😉

      • Main Street Musings August 29, 2011 at 8:03 pm #

        feel free to read between the lines 😉

  4. Stephanie August 29, 2011 at 5:36 pm #


    • Main Street Musings August 29, 2011 at 8:01 pm #

      thanks steph! i’m still chuckling over steve’s email about the baby name!

  5. Katie Morton August 29, 2011 at 6:33 pm #

    My parents have a bear in their neighborhood, so I feel your pain.

  6. Joanne August 29, 2011 at 8:43 pm #

    You should remember to bring your mom’s cane next time.

  7. Ali Handal August 31, 2011 at 3:43 am #

    Great story, well told! 🙂 Thanks for sharing it, Lisa!

  8. Delicate flower September 3, 2011 at 2:22 am #

    This is hilarious and is reminding me to be on bitch alert the next time I’m out for a neighborhood stroll.

    • Main Street Musings September 3, 2011 at 12:48 pm #

      And weren’t you the one who should also watch out for predatory frogs?

  9. Madeleine Begun Kane September 9, 2011 at 7:07 pm #

    Fun post and blog! Thanks for your lovely comment about my limericks and for linking to one of my pages!

  10. Nancy Wurtzel November 17, 2011 at 8:55 pm #

    You read my blog post about my Mom (Mummy and the Jam Jar) and left a comment and your link on BlogHer…sorry, it has taken me so long to respond. Loved this post about the neighborhood bitch!! We have a similar take on life….would love to connect further. Are you very involved in BlogHer? Best, Nancy (Dating Dementia)

    • Main Street Musings Blog November 18, 2011 at 11:31 am #

      Wow, I can’t believe you remembered after all this time! Good to hear from you. I plan to go to the next conference in NY. You? If you’d like, you can email me, or contact me on Facebook or twitter.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: