From: Quill Gordon, Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society
To: Bucky Beaver, CEO Nature’s Little Engineers, Inc.
Dear Mr. Beaver,
I thought we had an agreement. Several years ago, your grandfather moved his operations to a previously abandoned dam and pond, raising water levels to the point they threatened to inundate one of the roads I maintain on behalf of the Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society. Evidently pleased with what he had done, he then invited several families of muskrats to move in with him and they began digging tunnels into the road bed.
I understand that these are things beavers and muskrats do but these activities created a potentially dangerous and expensive problem for me. I pleaded with your grandfather and the questionable elements he associated with to cease and desist but they would not listen and I am sure your family has shared with you the story of what happened next. Please accept my belated condolences.
In an attempt to avoid such unpleasantness in the future, I arranged for the installation of a contraption known as a “beaver baffle” to protect my road while also providing your family with suitable habitat in which to live and work. Unfortunately, your father chose to ignore my efforts to get along and did what he could to undo my hard work. Again, my condolences.
When I first saw you this spring, I carefully pointed out my “baffle” and showed you what I considered to be a very reasonable water level. I took your response (several loud, watery slaps of your tail) to be acknowledgement of my stance on this issue but evidently I was wrong, as shown by the holes you chewed in my black plastic outlet pipe.
I had a good siphon going there, passing what I considered to be excess water downstream, but you broke it, Bucky. I hope you can understand my dismay at finding my outlet pipe floating, high and dry.
Even with several pairs of cinder blocks hanging across it, the air entering the holes you chewed floated the whole darn thing! In addition to being just a tad insulting, your chewing created extra work for me and I had to don my waders and attempt to “burp the baffle” in order to re-establish the desired flow.
It took nearly 250 pounds of blocks and a 220 pound man to get things back to nearly normal. I will find a way to patch the holes you chewed, Mr. Beaver, and I will continue to “burp the baffle” as often as needed in order to protect my road. Future feats of strength and dental exercises by you or members of your family will not be looked upon kindly, Bucky, and you should consider yourself politely warned to stay away from my water-controlling devices.
I would also like to take this opportunity to request that you pass this warning along to your brothers, sisters, nieces and nephews upstream. While I admire their fecundity and dedication to your cause of eliminating all running water, wherever it may be, I want to let you know that their activities have not gone un-noticed.
You may recognize this, Mr. Beaver, as the spring at the very headwaters of the Neverwas River, on the slopes of Nonesuch Mountain. Your family dropped a tree across the outlet and blocked the flow by piling mud and plant matter into the gaps. I have removed the tree and cleared the debris but your relatives apparently work the night shift, making contact difficult. Please pass along my displeasure regarding this latest project.
You might also want to have a word with your uncle, who has been blocking my culverts along the stream on the western side of the lake.
I have been in communication with various state agencies regarding the activities of your company, Nature’s Little Engineers, Inc. Your work has created more work for me and threatens the facilities I maintain. I have more important things to do than undo your efforts (i.e. making beds and cleaning toilets) and your cooperation would be very greatly appreciated. If you do not cease your activities in these disputed areas I will be left with no choice but to institute an immediate and permanent reduction in your work force.
With respect and best wishes for future cooperation,
That was good.
I’ve noticed as I get older and walk along the rivers and streams I fish, that I’ve developed a fear of the beaver punji sticks left behind by their never ending construction projects. History shows that I’ve lost the ability to get my arms out in front of me fast enough to break a fall, which seems to happen more frequently lately as my ability to pay attention to what I’m doing deteriorates.
Getting impaled while moving from one fishing spot to another is not how I want to spend an afternoon.
At a somewhat local bass pond their activities have left holes in the banks just big enough for a #12 boot to go right through them. Once, while fishing with a friend who was standing less than a rod-length away, I stepped into one such hole, promptly twisted and yelled and slapped my friend in the face with the last 1/3 section of a bass rod. It was funny, later. Much later.
Nice entry, Quill. I have forwarded you note on to a construction crew that does similar work at our home on the lake.
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