carcass day

You might think the title refers to the way I am feeling, what with it being paper-writing time and all, but it actually refers to a phenomenon I’m eager to share. God only knows why I feel it necessary to share these things, but here goes.
A couple of weeks ago, as I was driving to work, I couldn’t help but notice that my path was strewn with the remains of what were once furry and peaceable creatures. Cats, dogs, raccoons and other mammals were dead on the roadside in larger than average numbers. The most noticeable and shocking example was in the neighbor’s driveway – a dead deer. It almost looked like it had been placed there. I don’t know much about the neighbors, and whether they really watch us through binoculars or not, but I’m pretty sure the dead deer was not their doing. But the way it was placed oh-so-strategically in the center of their drive coupled with the myriad other creatures along the way made me think it was Carcass Day. You know, the day when everyone hauls their dead animals to the roadside for pickup. This seems the right part of the country for such a practice.
Speaking of remains, my angel-faced nephew triumphantly showed me the bleached bones of some creature he had stumbled upon in the woods. Someone had thoughtfully made a necklace out of animal teeth for him and he had bones stuck in each of his pockets. He held one up to me and asked, "What kind of bone do you think this is?" I ventured a guess. "A femur?" Delighted with my ignorance, he said, "No! It’s a deer bone!"

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