Friday, 25 May, 2001

'Possums and Armadillos

My brother sent me a note today about my May 17 entry.  "I think I've been in Arkansas too long," he says.  "When you mentioned enjoying wildlife in the area I did a double take on the word opossum.  Then my brain said that IS the correct name.  I've been referring to them and hearing them referred to as 'possums so long I'd forgotten that the name actually starts with an 'o'."  I remember that when I typed the word "opossum," I half expected the spell checker to complain at me.  Maybe I've been in Texas too long.

My brother also reminded me that an armadillo is nothing but a 'possum on a half shell.

I used to joke that armadillos don't really exist.  The only armadillos I'd ever seen until about 2 years ago were either stuffed, or splattered on the road.  I thought maybe they were props strategically placed on the road by the Texas Department of Public Safety for the tourists.  "See, we have armadillos in Texas."  But then I actually saw a couple of live ones when I was on a night mountain bike ride, so I can't believe the conspiracy theory anymore.