the other day (a lot of days ago) i ran from a raccoon

As I was aimlessly scrolling through my phone, a look of intensity on my face to give off the impression that I was studiously preparing for a work-related thing, I saw a person do a post about “forbidden things they want to pet.” One of the things was a racoon, and another was a red panda which is much cuter and cooler than a racoon. I think we’re all aware that racoons look like little bank robbers if bank robbers had fur covering their entire bodies and liked to eat trash. Wow, they got a mask for eyes, what a feat of mother nature! Why aren’t we talking more about those fish that like got a lantern on the top of their heads? Or the fact that egg-laying mammals exist, marsupials. I knew if I typed out that sentence, the word would come to me. An echidna is cuter and cooler than a raccoon, and where is there appreciation?

I could look up some facts about rabies but the more I know, the less my hyperbole would make sense. Or maybe it would make more sense and not even be a hyperbole, because it’d be a true fact. What I know about rabies is that it’s incurable and that it kills you. There are vaccines for it, if you get to a hospital quick enough after being bitten, you can get the vaccine and be treated but if you don’t, then you die. And your brain melts. Or something with your brain. I read a horror manga recently by Junji Ito and the crux of all the stories involved brain-melting, so maybe that’s where I got that idea from. No matter what happens, you die. I think I have the rabies vaccine. I am not sure I have it, but I don’t mind being stuck with a random needle by a medical professional because I’m not an ignorant idiot. I do not fear microchips or other insane conspiracy theories because I am an educated individual that has critical thinking skills.

This is not a point about vaccines. Or human ignorance and blind worship of celebrities. This is a post about racoons. Even though I live my life as a champion of women’s rights, I understand that sometimes they want a strong, strapping fellow to accompany them home after a late-night ladies’ night of wine and whatever else women do in the privacy of their own homes together. The late 90s and early 2000s films would tell me the activity of choice is pillow fights in lingerie, but I’m not so sure. Regardless, that is also not the point. The point is raccoons. I have now spelled that animal’s name in two different variations and neither has registered as a misspelling. This is not good because I am certain one of them is wrong. I will conduct some more research and return to this more educated. If you do not notice any misspellings of the word, then that means I went back and changed all the mistakes. However, I will still not look up rabies!

So anyway, I’m called to do my heteronormative masculine duties and accompany a woman back to her abode, which also is my abode since we share a bed under the watch of Jesus Christ. I’m walking, strolling, and spinning my parasol around, all things I do at around midnight when traversing the streets. I’m looking ahead, eyes like a hawk, and I see a movement. It’s yards ahead of me, 50, 60, possibly more, I’m not standing beside a football field as this is happening. It looks like a dog just running around, as they are wont to do. I ignore it. I continue to forge ahead. This mass on four legs, it changes course and starts to come after me. For a fleeting second, I ponder, “Wouldn’t that be funny if that is a raccoon?”. I do not ponder why that would be funny, I intrinsically know. As do y’all so I won’t describe it. I continue my journey; it looks like we are inevitably going to have our paths crossed. It becomes acutely obvious that it is a raccoon. Now we’re merely 10 yards away, or something like that, again, there is no football field nearby in order to help me measure. I stop. It stops. I look at it. It looks at me. I look behind me, but there is no one there. It does not look behind it because it is not worried. It is confident. It continues to stare at me. It starts to charge, running at what I can only assume is 50 mph or more. Possibly faster. I look at it. I turn around again, and I yell (in barely a whisper), “What the [redacted]?” I start to power walk away because I tell myself that sprinting would make me appear weak. It goes the width of one apartment building façade and does a harsh left, plodding down some stairs that lead to a basement. I turn around, and I scan my surroundings for signs of danger. More importantly, I scan for bystanders that might’ve seen me skedaddle away from a racoon. I see neither. What I see is an empty road ahead and a damsel in distress in the distance. I regain my wits about me, and I remind myself of the mission I signed up for. I strut forward, head held high, ready to vanquish the next danger that crosses my path. So it goes.

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