Unhinged Alaska: Something wicked this way comes

Since our last get together, spring has tenaciously sunk its choppers deep into the surrounding environment and is hanging in there like a possessed Pitbull.

Gardeners have rototilled, fertilized, seeded and set various plants in hopes they’ll produce flowers, shrubs and fruit to morph their yards into exhibitions worthy of features in Better Home and Gardens.

Such idyllic dreams usually dissipate faster than a frog’s fart in gale force winds as time skids over the bases and rockets toward a headfirst slide into summer.

Loving moose moms have commenced trolling through the neighborhoods tutoring their voracious rapscallions on the delights of dining on tender shoots once destined to become decorative landscaping while haughtily leaving stacks of steaming nuggets that could bury a midsized rodent.

We are preparing for such an invasion of the gnawing kind within a few days.

Last week we were honored when one of our local lady ungulates bedded down just west of our cabin and shared the birth of her twins.

Yes, it was rare and special moment and my bride became somewhat misty about the episode.

I, on the other hand, although pleased to experience such an exceptional spectacle, was highly suspicious because I had a feeling we were being set up.

The cow had been loitering around for days eyeing our novel flower garden prior to her stop, drop, and fold maneuver.

I eyed her back through a set of binoculars that could detect individual proboscis hairs and was dead certain she was sporting a malevolent smirk the size a major earthquake fault line.

We have been installing military grade netting along with enough concrete support wire to discourage the insidious mastication of shrubs worth more than a new set of tires.

For emergency backup I’ve pulled a unique doomsday weapon from the bowels of the basement and diligently prepared it for immediate action should circumstances take a dire turn.

The wicked device is now positioned just inside the main entrance in case the mini herd tries a stealth attack on our infantile apple tree.

I don’t enjoy employing such an appalling measure but its Alamo time and this time the defenders are going to be the victors.

I’m confident in the power of the weapon to dissuade wild creatures threatening the wellbeing of helpless flora because I’ve employed its impressive capabilities against wildlife from the high Cascades to my clandestine fishing spots on the Kenai Peninsula.

It has been in the family for years and I inherited it from one of my uncles who left home a few years ago to do some stream fishing in southeast Alaska and failed to return.

His wife never heard from him again and if you ever met her you’d probably give some credence to the rumor he’s just fine and has been spotted surf casting off the South Island coast of New Zealand.

Moving right along:

So, I guess it’s time to reveal my failsafe armament before Fish and Game lands a chopper in the yard and serves a search warrant.

It’s a concertina (squeezebox) and my dreadful attempts over the years to produce anything close to a recognizable note has proved to be an unmitigated deterrent to both positive and undesired fauna visitations.

I was once a fairly skilled drummer and did some touring with a rock band during my college years but if I touch anything requiring air, strings or the basic ability to sing, I’m quickly beseeched to limit my musical undertakings, not requiring wooden sticks, to unpopulated areas such as Death Valley.

Last year when the newbie flower patch wasn’t in play I only had two emergency call-outs for the deployment of the ancient instrument.

The first was for a couple of coyotes skulking around the edge of the front yard calculating how to make a snack out of our clueless miniature poodle.

The second was a surprise visit from a young black bear that didn’t have the IQ of the driveway he was standing on.

Neither species were able to handle more than fifteen seconds of my rousing vocal/concertina rendition of “We Will Rock You” by Queen before they sailed off the embankment and permanently disappeared into the alders below, so I’m confident about the forthcoming confrontation.

Update: June 2, 2016 04:00 hours.

The nubile ninjas hit sometime after midnight seriously trimming the Sitka Roses while nipping off and then discarding the Blue Bearded Iris bud before applying incisors to the White Lily.

It looks like the devious *&^%$ flossed with the netting and dropped kicked the wire so her rapacious spawn could sample some gourmet goodies when our, now deposed, “guard mutt” fell asleep at her post in the window.

This is not over.

Homemade sensors have been installed and the next time the trio tries to tippy hoof in, I’ve got an original version rendition of “Proud Mary” that’ll be so startling, they’ll be the first hairless moose on the Kenai.

Nick can be reached at ncvarney@gmail.com is he hasn’t been hauled in for noise pollution.

More in Life

Ward off Halloween’s mystical monsters with these garlic-infused cheesy shells and pepper sauce. (Photo by Tressa Dale/Peninsula Clarion)
On the strawberry patch: Tasty Halloween

Keep spooky creatures at bay with garlic-infused shells and pepper sauce.

Will Morrow (courtesy)
Let there be lights!

When I stopped in at one of our local stores, I didn’t cringe when I saw all the holiday decorations on display.

Cabbage, potatoes, salmon and an assortment of pantry staples make for a culinary challenge. (Photo by Tressa Dale/Peninsula Clarion)
On the strawberry patch: Take a culinary pop quiz

Get creative with what’s in your pantry

This undated John E. Thwaites photo, perhaps taken near Seward, shows the S.S. Dora grounded. (Alaska State Library photo collection)
Resilience of the Dora, part 3

Her long career had come to an end at last.

Nick Varney
Unhinged Alaska: Sometimes I wonder, who needs who

Dog whispers we are not. Suckers for unconditional love, you bet.

Meredith Harber (courtesy)
Minister’s Message: Don’t let termination dust bring you down

If I’m honest, this time of year is the hardest for me mentally and emotionally.

Pieces hang on display at the Kenai Art Center for the open call show on Wednesday, Oct. 6, 2021 in Kenai, Alaska. (Camille Botello/Peninsula Clarion)
‘They felt like they could share with us now’

Art center open call offers space for new artists.

The Cosmic Hamlet Entertainment film crew prepares for a new scene to roll on the set of “Bolt from the Blue” at the Kilcher Homestead on Sept. 28. (Photo by Sarah Knapp/Homer News)
‘Bolt from the Blue’ film features Homer

“The Office” star Kate Flannery cast in feature film produced in Homer.

These old-fashioned doughnuts don’t skimp on the fat or sugar. (Photo by Tressa Dale/Peninsula Clarion)
On the strawberry patch: Memories of old-fashioned doughnuts

My recipe is for old-fashioned doughnuts, and since I make these maybe twice a year, I don’t skimp on the sugar and fat.

Virginia Walters (Courtesy photo)
Life in the Pedestrian Lane: October is here again

The days are shorter. We are losing nearly six minutes a day. It’s getting colder.

This John E. Thwaites photo shows the S.S. Dora near Sand Point, Alaska. Thwaites sailed as mail clerk on the Dora between at least 1905 and 1912. (Alaska State Library photo collection)
Resilience of the Dora, part 2

The S.S. Dora touched lives on and became part of the history of the Kenai Peninsula and Southcentral Alaska.

Steller Sea Lions can be seen in an enclosure at the Alaska SeaLife Center on Friday, Sept. 24, 2021, in Seward, Alaska. (Photo by Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion)
Alaska SeaLife Center to Alaskans: We’re still here for you

You rallied and kept us alive. Today, we’re writing to say thank you.