Black and pink critter confrontations

Why did the skunk cross the road?

Or better yet, why did Janice stop to wait for the skunk to cross the road?

Well, first off I was surprised to see a skunk on my very early, early commute along state Route 43 to the newspaper the other morning, but I spotted something up ahead, kind of scampering across the road, kind of taking its good old time.

I thought to myself, “Look out, little squirrel!” I didn’t want to be responsible for its demise.

But then it occurred to me that, hey, squirrels aren’t black with a white streak down their back.

Yikes! It’s a skunk, I told myself, pumping the brakes to prevent myself from having a car-and-critter smelly confrontation.

I stopped and, guess what? So did the skunk, which is not a very convenient thing to have happen on a highway.

We kind of looked at each other with matched surprise.

I decided, though, that this skunk was either being very arrogant, feeling very lucky as in maybe having nine lives like a cat or that it had a death wish and was waiting for me to make my next move.

I considered honking the horn, but what if that made the skunk react in a way that involved a spray?

Deciding to not take any chances, I thought better of it and waited for what seemed like a very l-o-n-g time.

Long skunk story short, Pepe Le Pew finally scampered along his merry way, and so did I, grateful that I wouldn’t have to give me or my car a bath in tomato juice.


If I was surprised to be confronted by a skunk in the morning, I was even more surprised later that day to be in the company of a flock of pink flamingoes.

There in the front yard they were, bearing a sign announcing that Better Half and I had been “flamingoed” courtesy of the Richmond United Methodist Church’s youth group raising money for an upcoming mission trip.

The sender of the flamingoes was listed as “Anonymous,” but that’s for the birds.

Me thinks I smell a rat … but I guess that’s way better than a skunk.

(Kiaski, a resident of Richmond, is a staff columnist and features writer for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times and community editor for the Herald-Star. She can be contacted at