An unexpected battle

No need for coffee today.

I couldn’t sleep this morning. I was thinking about the work I wanted to get done before covering the IU trustees meeting this afternoon when Indiana’s new athletic facilities will be presented. And I was thinking about all of the secrecy right now in Indiana athletics. Was James Hardy suspended because of the selfish, lackadaisical attitude he’s shown in practice this season? What’s the deal with Blake Powers and his mystery injury (a sprained ankle?) that allows him to practice, but not to play in games? Did doctors find scar tissue or a tumor when they operated on Terry Hoeppner last week? Was Hoeppner in the press box Saturday as was rumored all day and reported by some media outlets? Why would him attending the game be a secret? What happened to being forthright and honest? Doesn’t anybody think those who support IU athletics deserve to know what’s going on with the teams they support?

With those thoughts stirring in my head, I got up early, still sleepy-eyed, and let my dogs out. They were about six inches into my back yard when I heard growling and snarling. My border collie/shepherd mix had run face into a raccoon and jumped on it. The raccoon squealed, clawed and bit right back at her. As I pulled Annie off of it, the raccoon, to my amazement, darted into the house.

I armed myself with a garden rake and went inside. The raccoon raced around my living room, 15 pounds of fury, climbing furniture and walls trying to get out of the house. As it roared its displeasure, I realized I’d found the animal that other local residents had mistaken for a cougar when they’d heard it outside their homes. The raccoon darted into the kitchen where I was standing. Not as brave as Annie, I threw aside the rake and dove onto the kitchen counter.

Eventually, my favorite new pet scampered into a room in my basement, where I closed him in and prayed he’d exit through the exterior door that I opened for him. I’m hoping he did, but he could be waiting for me behind my washer and dryer when I get home tonight. If so, maybe I’ll tell him a story tonight about IU’s plans for a new basketball practice facility and the football end zone project. I’d tell him instead about Powers’ injury or Hardy’s suspension, but then I’d have to kill him.


  1. Yes, the raccoon is gone as far as I can tell. I will admit that every time I went into my basement last night, I was a little nervous that it might suddenly reappear.

  2. I think you may have found a new mascot for the Hoosiers. After all, he was harrassing a reporter.

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