Animal Vocabulary

at 10:43 PM
Save ArticleSave Article

Failed to save article

Please try again

This article is more than 5 years old.

The other day I was having dinner with a friend, Leona. Something was definitely bugging her. She was feeling antsy, uncharacteristically wolfing down her food. She wouldn't tell me what was wrong but I kept badgering her. Sometimes she is just as stubborn as a mule.

Finally she confessed that it was her work. She just left IBM for a job in a small company, now she was a big fish in a little pond. But one of her fellow workers was getting the lion's share of assignments. He was always nit-picking about her work. A real snake in the grass he was. But finally the straw that broke the camel's back was when he rammed his own proposals right through without going through the proper channels. He had wormed his way into the good graces of the boss.

Just then our waiter appeared with a rather dog-eared menu. He had been hounding us about the daily specials but I had a whale of an idea. Let's just share a vegetarian burrito and a diet coke. I had really been pigging out during the holidays and my physique was nothing to crow about. Besides I am no spring chicken and I have been squirreling pounds for years now.

Anyway. Leona is normally as timid as a mouse but once she gets a bee in her bonnet then watch out. I told her what is good for the goose is good for the gander. I suggested that she not horse around with this, that she get to work and find some stool pigeon in the company who can ferret out this skunk's weak spots.

She told me that the old coot is proud as a peacock and most probably crazy as a loon, but he is real foxy in the business world so it may be hard to get to him. But if she worked hard and got real bearish about pointing out his weaknesses then he would soon be singing his swan song.


Finally the waiter brought the bill but there was something fishy about it. I hate to grouse about checks but it was too high. They had charged us for two burritos. I was mad as a wet hen. After he corrected it, I went ahead and ponied up for the tab. Leona and I said our goodbyes as we always do: See you later alligator, after a while crocodile.

This is Michael Ellis with a Perspective.

Michael Ellis is a naturalist who leads trips throughout the world. He lives in Santa Rosa.