Friday, March 26, 2010

Wolf Battles Errant Defecation

The week preceding Easter heralds a unique phenomenon in the Wolf's little corner of the world. Known as Semana Santa, it functions as a universal imperative that every person in Mexico drop what they are doing and rush blindly to the nearest beach for a week of fun in the sun.

In most coastal areas the influx of revelry is staggering. Usually depressed local economies are suddenly awash in tourism. Hotels and restaurants that remain empty all year spring to life. The shelves of local markets become empty. Shrimp and fish and oysters and beer are consumed voraciously. And then after a week it is over. The visitors stumble in the direction of home and Semana Pascua begins (a week long national hangover).

The isolated beach that houses both the Badger and the Wolf is not immune to this pandemonium. Hundreds of campers from local villages and far flung cities alike descend upon this normally tranquil environ. They eat and drink and frolic in the surf. Families play soccer and volleyball. For the most part it is a festive and congenial affair.

There is, however, the problem of infrastructure. There are no permanent services in place to accommodate campers. There is no water or electricity. To address this issue, a few villagers annually erect a tent store that offers rudimentary groceries. Ice cream, fruit, and snack vendors trek out each day to hock their wares. And a beer kiosk is established to ensure that no one goes thirsty.

But there is an issue that each year goes unresolved. What to do with the excrement of 800 men, women, and children gorging themselves on ceviche and coconuts. The possible solutions are myriad. The ocean seems like a natural receptacle, but there is the issue of privacy. The jungle makes sense, but it is filled with all manners of things that sting and bite. Instead a seemingly universal yet largely unspoken accord is inevitably reached. The natural agreement is to defecate in front of the Lobo's gate.

Now this causes the Wolf all kinds of anger and consternation. He understands each act of defecation to be a personal affront. An unsanitary and disgusting attack on his character. Over the years he has struggled to prevent the proliferation of this activity. He has pleaded with the local village council to establish some kind sanitation plan. Of his own volition, he has dug conveniently placed latrines. These actions rarely elicit an effect. One year he even placed politely worded signs around his property asking that would-be poopers find another location. This plan was foiled by a plucky jokester who showed his disapproval by defecating on the Lobo's gate lock before using one of the signs as toilet paper.

This year, however, with Semana Santa at our doorstep the Wolf has struck upon an ingenious plan. In another moment of otherworldly inspiration, he has decided to sprinkle a mixture of white, blue, and red chalk in front of his gate. His hope is that anyone who might entertain the thought of using his property as a toilet will see the powder and assume it is poison. The mind boggles at the depths of such profundity.

The Badger is dubious that such a plan holds any promise. But if the Wolf is anything, he is eternally hopeful. The Tejon remains poised to shatter that hope.

Sanitation Through Crafty Deception

A Toilet No More?

A Brutal Act of Psychological Warfare

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