EDITOR’S COLUMN | Rabbits are trouble

So NASA made it made it back to Jupiter. Big deal. Donald Trump could become the next president, Choochokam has been called off and rabbits are back in my yard.

Yeah, things couldn’t be worse.

I don’t mean to overly disparage NASA’s accomplishment, and I’m not in the habit of doing so. Truth be told, I could be considered a bit of a space dork. Star Trek, Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica — these are all quality television programs and I admit I may even own a few t-shirts. I’ll also fess up to the fact that I may have named boats after related characters or figures, and that a family cat was once named Wampa. In my defense, he was adopted from a farm on Central Whidbey and was likely the largest feline I’ve ever seen. He was really more like a dog, actually. He’d come to a whistle or call — he’d even fetch.

Anyway, that Juno, NASA’s solar-powered spacecraft, spent the past five years flying over one billion miles to reach the gas giant, is invariably cool. It’s just hard to appreciate during such dark times.

Trump and Choochokam notwithstanding, I consider rabbits to be one of the true scourges of South Whidbey. Think I’m exaggerating? When they aren’t wrecking gardens or invading cities, they’re darting in front of cars scaring the bejesus out of good and conscientious drivers. They are deceptively cute, often luring the unknowing into picking them up; this is almost always a fool’s errand that ends in an unexpected and totally unprovoked explosion of kicking and scratching fur. And I’m only talking about domesticated, pet rabbits. Try that with a wild cousin and it would almost certainly result in a fatality.

The point is rabbits are unreasonable, unpredictable and totally trouble, the lot of them.

Lately, they’ve taken to teasing my dogs. They parade around in the yard just in front of the french doors and safely out of reach from my increasingly agitated pups. It’s particularly difficult for Spock, my 18-month old Australian  cattle dog. He recognizes the threat and lets me know with incessant barking.

But the biggest problem is during the dogs’ morning bathroom run at 6:30 a.m. Despite my extensive reconnaissance through the shutters, Spock, without fail, blasts out the front door at sound barrier-shattering speeds in hopes of finally catching one of the furry beasts. I’d almost smile if it weren’t for the fact that the chase doesn’t stop at the end of the yard. Nope, he disappears around the corner and down the road, leaving me standing barefoot on the porch in nothing but my pjs and barking a tune of my own.

Rabbits — they really are the source of all my troubles.