It’s time to name our teasing backyard gopher

Now Galavanting Gopher goes where he wants.

Now Galavanting Gopher goes where he wants.

The saga of the backyard gopher, Ellie B aka Dogamous Pyle and I continues.

Call it Chapter Too Many.

When my dear wife Karen and I returned from a full and satisfying day of activities on the first day of summer yesterday — a 3-year-old’s birthday party, our annual trip to the Parade of Homes (post coming Wednesday) and weekly supermarket stock-up — our backyard retreat led to the discover that the humane gopher trap had been sprung.

Nothing was inside.

But the cage sat 180 degrees opposite from the position where I had carefully set it.

The best we could figure, this big and wily gopher was smart enough to know it wanted the apples, bananas and lettuce inside. The furry somehow jostled the apparatus enough to close the door shut without being inside. It wanted the food enough to turn the cage around in its attempt to get at it.

Either that or it just wanted us to know it’s smarter than we are.

And, just now, I looked out on the porch to spot Ellie B coiled at the open screen door, watching the gopher out on the backyard lawn, coming closer and closer and closer. With iPad in hand, I slowly opened the sliding door to the porch. I knew the moment I made a motion to the porch, Ellie B would play hero and rush down the steps to the lawn, and the gopher would flee under the shed.

That’s Ellie B watching at left, and the gopher taunting us at the center of the photo.

You know I like using nicknames.

This wily, brave, sonofagun gopher needs one for extended blogging purposes as we try to entice it inside the cage, so the door can shut and I can drive it off to another happy home away from all this.

What should I start calling our backyard gopher in subsequent installments of this battle of wills?

70 thoughts on “It’s time to name our teasing backyard gopher

  1. Ha! Your gopher reminds me of the GIGANTIC (okay, probably normal sized) RAT (okay, probably a mouse) that Shleisel and I tried to trap with humane mouse trips and feta. Didn’t really work!

    Isn’t there a gopher in Caddy Shack? Maybe you should name it Bill Murray?


    • Good try on the gigantic/normal rat/mouse with humane/feta for you/Shleisel, Aussa. This smart gopher is driving us nuts. I like the suggestion of Bill Murray in the name game, but I fear that would cause me to like the little bugger too much. When he wanders into this humane cage for that snack, I will be driving him to greener pastures!


  2. So many goo names being offered – and all I can think of is some kind of set-up from the old Looney Tunes or Disney cartoons…Elmer Fudd and Bugs; Sylvester and Tweety – the hunter becomes the hunted.. πŸ™‚


  3. I was going to suggest Gopher Broke, but then I saw that excellent earth rider Judy Berman proposed something similar, thanks to other fave Sandra Boynton. I am also quite enamored of Diana’s entry. “Waffles” is probably a terrible name for this gopher since (1) this gopher obviously goes fer it, without waffling and (2) that’s probably my post title for tomorrow.


  4. I’m thinking something Shakespeare…
    How about ‘Brutus, et tu’ (?)
    “No Man! I ain’t et nothin’!”
    (Yes Mark. Your suspicions are spot on: Lance has lost his frame of reference)

    Love the Gopher Series, btw.


    • The gopher has yet to turn on me, Lance, but did charge on the dog when I got a grip on Ellie B’s collar and pulled her away. Thanks, dude. I need this series to end, though.


  5. How about Gandalf? For sure a wizard of a creature. And when he returns he will be whiite instead of brown. Ha!

    By the way, I had a good friend who lived in a rural area who was having trouble with racoons. Now, he had a farm and most pests or dangerous animals that wandered on his property could legally be and were shot. But there was this pair of racoons and my friend could not bring himself to kill them so he set a humane trap with the necessary bait. He heard a great crashing and rattling during the night and went out with his flashlight to see that one of the racoons was safely installed in the trap. He figured job well done and he would transport and release the animal in the morning (they have very sharp teeth). When morning arrived, he went out to see the racoon and found… the trap was empty. The other racoon had figured out how the trap worked and had freed his buddy over night. As many times as he put that trap back out, he never again caught another racoon.


    • Man, that is smart! And a terrible story to tell me, too, in the midst of my gopher chase, Paul. Thanks a lot. Gandalph, the wizard gopher, will change my trap into nothingness …


    • Both names resonate, quite differently, Beth. I favor the first because I cannot fathom a bib tucked under my chin, fork and knife at the ready …

      Nominations are still open throughout this day, my friends!


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