hate- verb: to dislike intensely or passionately.
I hate deer. I have an intense dislike for these giant, furry rats with tails that seem to sit in a ditch with a suicide wish and wait for the most inopportune time to try and cross a dark road. I have had to kill bears and owls and dogs that have been severely injured by motorists. Nothing comes close to the pleasure I feel in killing a deer, which means I probably won’t get that Christmas card from PETA anytime soon.
Case in point. I was driving my squad car one evening, on my way to serve a civil paper, on the phone with one of my partners. In an instantaneous second a maniacal deer jumped across the opposing lane of traffic and into my grill. I hit it with the force of my Dodge Charger at 55mph, and sent it spinning straight out in front my squad across the pavement. Shoot!, I yelled into the phone (yes it was indeed that word). I got off the phone and surveyed the damage to my car. The front end looked like a crunched up pop can. Limping it to the dealership, I spent an hour and a half finding a spare squad and transferring all my equipment over. The butcher’s bill on that repair was $7,000.
Yet, that wasn’t enough. The suicidal deer had it out for me this year. Two days later as I was driving my squad down a dark road, I spun the old war-horse Crown Victoria around to try and stop a car that had a taillight out. As I accelerated to catch up, another deer jumped across my grill. I was highly motivated to not hit this deer and swerved to miss it (which isn’t preferable since it is the stuff vehicle rollovers are made of). This time I only clipped the passenger side of my squad, busting the turn signal.
The deer fell into a long, steep ditch. I stopped my car, cursing the entire species of deer. I found the deer with its back leg snapped in two after being clipped by my war-horse. With a sense of ecstasy I ended its existence. Not wanting a deer to go uneaten, I asked our dispatch to try and contact someone on our call list who may be interested in coming to pick up the deer.
Within a few minutes I was told that someone was on their way to meet me, receive a permit for the deer from me, and take possession of it. I waited. And waited. It turned out the person had a hard time finding me, and when he did find me he pulled up in a truck that looked as if it had been in a demolition derby in 1996. The driver looked like he could have been Uncle Jesse from an episode of Dukes of Hazard back in 1979. He had overalls and a long, white beard and talked as if he were on death’s doorstep.
I told him where the deer was and he quickly informed me that he had quadruple bypass surgery and several stints in his heart. Wanting to not turn a deer tag call into a heart attack call, I elected to drag the deer for him up to the top of the road. After a five minute hall up the steep embankment, the deer laid on the shoulder waiting to be lifted into his truck.
Uncle Jesse turned his demolition derby truck around in the middle of the road to pull next to the deer and place it in the bed of the truck. Probably intending to begin tenderizing the meat, he ran over the deer with his back tire in the process. He then waddled to the back of his truck with the respiratory sound of Darth Vader. He wiggled the handle to drop the tailgate of his truck and it was rather obvious the entire handle was missing. “This thing has been broke for a while”, he gasped.
I asked him if he had a rope or anything to hoist the deer into the bed of the truck. The answer was no. Of course it was no. This call had gone to Bismarck a long time ago. I told him if he could lift up part of the deer, I may be able to dead lift it into the bed of his truck while I was standing in it. I watched as Uncle Jesse bear hugged the deer as if it was his long lost son and barely get it into my reach, allowing me to lift it into the truck by its leg.
By now both of us sounded like Darth Vader. He thanked me profusely and said he would give me some sausage after he had cut the meat up. He then went on to tell me about America’s problems and how it is the fault of President Obama and the last thing we need is another black president.
Ah, Uncle Jesse was a racist. I countered his opinion. Quickly wished him a healthy night and went on my way. I’m still waiting for that sausage.