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Confessions of the Spicy Hay

What may look like a vacuum cleaner cord or a laptop cable or a phone/internet cord may look like a stick to our furry friends. In 8 years I've never had a casualty of cords. Never. Until 2021. And the timing was the worst! We were getting ready for bed the night before the TODAY SHOW filming and I watched things in slow motion from across the room as Oreo took one decisive chomp of the laptop cord -- the power cord to charge the computer that we'd been planning to record our TV interview the next morning and the Kelly Clarkson Show in the afternoon. Our only computer power cord. And we had about 20 minutes left of battery. Oreo had hopped up in Dad's recliner chair and leaned way over to the end table where the computer sat and exercised her incisors. A place she never went. She took me to a place I'd never been emotionally. Sheer panic. It was 20 minutes to the closing of the only place open in the Twin Cities where we could go get a replacement adaptor. That closed in 25 minutes. That may not have it in stock. We couldn't just order it on Amazon and have it show up in time. That meant getting dressed like a superhero, fumbling with shoes I'd put on in the car and running out the door barefoot watching mom sprint across the yard with the car keys. Please let the traffic signals all be on green!! There was no time to add this to our morning equation. This was it.

Yes we made it to the store with at least a minute to spare as I fumbled to hand her a mask. Yes they had the adaptor in stock. And yes we collapsed laughing in the car that Team Smith pulled off this incredible save. Yes the TV show recordings happened and imagine the heightened sense of relief when the signal worked and the battery power lasted the whole interview. FAST FORWARD TWO MONTHS

If you tried to call us THIS weekend and couldn't get through, don't blame Huck. Nope. That's on us. Again. And I'm served a large juicy slice of humble pie

because our family talks about "Preventing the preventable." We have taught Bunny Boot Camp to hundred of people how to bunny-proof their home. Yet we let our guard down and didn't double check to make sure the guest bedroom door was closed and latched completely because Huck somehow got in, crawled under the bed where the phone line comes into the house. Three nibbles later according to my CSI skills, and we received a very expensive repair bill for replacing the internet box and cord.

Remember I'm in distance learning online high school and I had an English assignment that needed to be completed on the Lord of the Flies. No internet = no homework and I have a test in the morning too. So again, we're running out the door to drive to my grandparents to finish and submit my assignment there. And I needed to stay for a few days during the day so I could attend class until the internet was back on at our house.

No matter what some people think about rabbit teeth, rabbits aren't just like rodents because they aren't rodents. They're lagomorphs ---which means they have teeth that grow their whole live including 4 maxillary incisors (101, 102, 201, and 202) and 2 mandibular incisors (301 and 401) and molars. Rodents don't have molars. The two tiny maxillary incisors on the top (102 and 202) are significantly smaller and are called peg teeth. They keep the bottom teeth from impaling the roof of the mouth. Here's a really cool article about rabbit teeth... We need to give rabbits plenty to chew on to help keep their length in check and also help with boredom. Plus it gives them the needed fiber too. And hopefully that doesn't mean fiber optics.

All these years we've never experienced the dreaded cord biting. We've been careful, consistent, and kept cords covered, room doors closed. These two cords plus a vacuum cleaner are now sadly RIP (rabbit incisor playtoys). Our bunnies got into unexpected places and caught us off guard. In eight years we've never been really tested with destructo-behavior until this spring.

Irony Alert: I've taught hundreds of other families about bunny proofing houses. And I followed all my own advise and yet this has been an incredibly expensive two months. And the stress, running around for replacement, no fun. Dealing with my parents dealing with the stress, really not fun. But we all let our guard down and somehow got a little complacent. Rabbits remain curious. They're still nibbly. Still needing to move those pesky cords out of the way and they don't have opposable thumbs. Can't ring the bell on their bicycle either (a real epiphany when I was seven). Always learning. Ha! So we're always needing to be alert and think ahead. Naughty bunny or simply being a bunny? It's a matter of perspective. I stopped being as diligent, and well, now I'm publicly sharing a confessions post.

My lesson for the journal: Pride goeth before the cord.

Wish you all a great week! And help me cheer on the Mississippi Speed Record team. They're almost there and a few hours ahead of record pace so far.

- Caleb

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