Interspecies friends (we ain’t kidding, mac!)

Happy Monday! Whoo, weekend, you are like a candle in the wiiiiind with your quickness.

It is random Dad story day. I was going to tell them over the weekend but someone who likes them the most named Jim does not read my blog until Monday so I saved them. YOU’RE WELCOME JIM.

My dad told me a story recently and he was all “THIS ONE’S FOR YOUR BLOG.” I think because animals were involved and he knows I’m a sucker for animal stories. Like, if this were caveman times, that would be how the cavemen would court me. With good animal stories told around the fire. I am a SUCKER for them. But then Dad told me ANOTHER story and it was MORE bloggy. The original one was kind of meh. The second one was kind of weird. I like weird even more than I like animally. Best? Weird AND animally.

But out of deference to him I will tell them BOTH even though he didn’t tell me I could tell you the second one. Although he didn’t specifically say I COULDN’T, either. So I’m going to go with “it’s ok to tell both.” I mean, G.I. Joe used to tell me that knowing was half the battle but I’m pretty sure that not-knowing is a good part of the battle, too, because then you can claim ignorance.


He went to visit his best friend (listen, he and his BFF have been BFFs since they were wee kiddos and they are in their 60s, how adorable is that? The most, is how) and his best friend has a camp and there’s this thing that I don’t 100% understand up there where the BFF stores corn. And he put 100 pounds of corn in it, and the next day the corn was GONE. And he was all, “Amy’s dad, where could the corn be, that is a lot of corn.” So my dad, who’s totally Black Ops when it comes to surveillance, I think because he’s sure that the government is watching him but I can’t guarantee that, set up his night-vision camera and they all tee-heed their way away and then the next day pulled the SD card to see what’s up with the corn thieves and guess what it was?

No, totally not a penguin, ALSO my guess, ALWAYS my first guess, or a fisher, because I was hoping it would be a fisher again, those things rule.

How cute is this? This raccoon is totally singing a tune, no joke.


The raccoon was climbing up a little ladder thingy and spinning this wheel thingy and corn was falling out. Then THREE OTHER RACCOONS were below, gobbling up the corn. OH. And here’s the best part, ready? Guess who ELSE was eating the purloined corn?

Nom nom nom.


So the raccoon family was FRIENDS with the porcupine! They were all eating the purloined corn TOGETHER! I know, right? That is too cute for WORDS! It is like an Animal Planet SITCOM! I asked my dad if the porcupine and the raccoons were friends and he said, “Well, the porcupine wasn’t quilling the raccoons so I guess they got along alright.” Hee! Quilling.

Apparently my dad’s BFF wasn’t amused by the corn thievery so my dad and his BFF set up some sort of raccoon cockblockery where the raccoon couldn’t get into the corn again. I find this sad. Interspecies friends are ADORABLE. What will they talk about now? It’s not like they have television programs to discuss, or bowling. I guess they could discuss the kids, or maybe the weather, but how far will that go? That friendship will get stale fast. This might be the end of their friendship, seriously. I am totally bummed about this end of a friendship.


The second story is just kind of bizarre. So my dad has a friend who is handicapped and can’t walk. (I promise I’m not making fun of this guy, I barely know him, I’m not enough of an asshole to mock the handicapped, and he was injured in Vietnam which I find admirable. Well, OBVIOUSLY not that he was injured. That he served.) So he found a thing online where you could get – no, wait, I’m totally not even kidding – A HELPER MULE.

These mules don't look especially helpful, but I'm assured the one he bought will be.

I was not aware that this is a thing but my dad swears that this is a thing and I have to assume it is. Who would make up “helper mule?” I am not having luck finding anything on the interwebs about this other than a random mention on Wikipedia that such a situation exists.

Anyway, so this guy BOUGHT A HELPER MULE and he’s totally getting it shipped to him.

So my dad and I had the following conversation:

Me: So, wait, what’s he going to DO with the helper mule?
Dad: Ride it.
Me: Wait, what? Ride it? Ride it where?
Dad: I don’t know. Around.
Me: He has a Rascal scooter. Why does he need a mule?
Dad: It’s a HELPER mule.
Me: But the Rascal scooter’s helping him, too. Is that a Helper Rascal scooter?
Dad: That mule is trained to help people.
Dad: I don’t know. Apparently, it kneels down so you can get on it. Then ride it.
Me: HE HAS A RASCAL SCOOTER. WHY DOES HE NEED A MULE. YOU DON’T LIVE IN THE OUTBACK. Or the Grand Canyon. He lives in TOWN. This is suspect.
Dad: I’m not 100% sure why. He hasn’t answered me when I ask him that. Why do you keep calling it a Rascal scooter? It’s like you’re calling it by its first and last name. Like Abraham Lincoln. Or Bob Dylan. I think you can just call it a Rascal. Like Cher.
Me: I don’t know. Just calling it a Rascal seems ambiguous. “He has a Rascal!” You might think I mean he has a scamp who lives with him, I don’t know. ANYWAY. That Rascal scooter is perfectly adequate for his needs. I feel like maybe he just wanted a pet mule. Which I can’t really fault him for. Who doesn’t want an awesome pet, now and again? But maybe you should have encouraged him to get a helper MONKEY. Those things can open cabinets and bring you foodstuffs. Helper mules most definitely cannot open cabinets or bring you Hohos or Sunkist sodas.
Dad: He can open his own cabinets. It’s his legs that don’t work. His arms work fine. Also, he has a wife, she can bring him TV snacks, I suppose.
Me: Damn, then I guess he doesn’t need a monkey. Probably for the best; in some movie I watched like five minutes of one time before it freaked me out too much and I changed the channel, a helper monkey got possessed by the devil.
Dad: That’s probably an unlikely scenario.
Me: I don’t know. Monkeys are evil, remember the time we went to Parc Safari in Canada and they tore all the detailing off the guy’s car in front of us?
Dad: Heh. Yeah. That was funny.
Me: It totally was. But also frightening, because it could have been your face they were tearing up so efficiently, you know?
Dad: Probably not, unless you got out of the car.
Me: True. I was NOT getting out of the car. Not with all of those dastardly monkeys with their quick hands around. I was wearing a sparkly shirt that day. They obviously were drawn to sparkly things. I would have been TOAST. So, wait, who’s going to take care of the mule?
Dad: I don’t know.
Me: His wife? I can’t imagine his wife taking care of that mule. She’s totally classy. And he can’t. The Rascal scooter would get mule poo and mud in the wheels and then it wouldn’t run.
Dad: True.
Me: I feel this mule plan is not well-thought-out. Unless maybe he’s moving to the Grand Canyon and needs it to scale the paths and pack in water and granola bars or something.
Dad: I don’t think he’s doing that.
Me: I kind of want to pet that mule.
Dad: I knew you would want that. We’ll go see the mule when you come home this summer.
Me: Will it let me ride it?
Dad: You’re not handicapped.
Me: No. But it’s a HELPER mule. I can’t imagine it wouldn’t want to be helpful. And that would be helpful. I only got to ride a horse once, for like three minutes. I would feel extraordinarily helped if I got to ride a mule for longer than three minutes.
Dad: I can see your point. We’ll talk to the mule about helping you out this summer. You can be like his community service project.

So this really is exciting animal day. We have: raccoons, porcupines, AND mules. I know. I think it’s only a matter of time before the National Wildlife Service wants me to come and work for them, right? I would be the BEST at that, no joke. Oh, wait, that would involve a lot of walking. I hate walking. SNAP. I could totally ride a helper mule. This is a very good plan.

I like that I have my life all planned out now. I feel really good about this. I’m going to name my mule Sal. I think you have to, right? There’s a song about a mule named Sal and everything. Then I can sing the Erie Canal song TO my mule, which he or she would love, as Sal is totally a unisex name, and we would be INTERSPECIES FRIENDS.

Seriously, this is just the best. I’m going to start packing now! Huzzah!

(P.S. Happy birthday, N.! With apologies for changing this a bit to our mutual love, Stephen Sondheim, what would I do without you? How would I ever get through? Who would I complain to for hours? Who’d bring me the flowers when I have the flu? Have a wonderful day, and more than that, have a wonderful year!)

About lucysfootball

I'm not the girl with the most cake. Someday. SOMEDAY. View all posts by lucysfootball

35 responses to “Interspecies friends (we ain’t kidding, mac!)

  • Mister Doctor Professor Susurrus M. Chiaroscuro, Esquire

    A. . . a helper mule? Autistic kids/adults use dogs. Helper dogs. I see the mule being used similarly. The mule could knock on doors and if he needed help with the door handle the mule could just kick the door in for him.

    I see it being house broken and staying inside with him and his wife.

    Your dad never disappoints.


    • lahikmajoe

      It’s true – Amy’s dad never disappoints. Never.


      • lucysfootball

        I let him know that tonight when I talked to him. He pretended to bluster but I could hear the glowing right below the surface. He *loves* that he has internet fans. Even though he *says* he doesn’t think you all exist. :)


    • lucysfootball

      I’ve actually seen helper dogs, and read up on seizure dogs, which I think is just awesome. So, nothing weird about dogs. Even (ugh, gross) helper monkeys have a purpose. This mule situation just seems totally suspect, though.

      It does NOT stay inside! It has a CORRAL! With HAY in it!

      I told my dad tonight that you said it could kick in doors and he laughed so hard and said, “That’s something I never thought of! That’s a use for a helper mule that never crossed my mind!” He doesn’t laugh easily. (Well, at OTHER people’s jokes. I make him laugh all the time, because I am AWESOME.) That’s a total win for you! *bestows hard-to-get-award*


  • Rich Crete

    No way! Super small world. The Parc Safari in Hemmingford Quebec? True fact…I have a cousin named Marc or Chris or something and he totally worked at Parc Safari for like 5 years. Do you know him?
    (When I went there in grade school…TBA…time before Amy…there was nothing funnier than baboon butts.)


    • lucysfootball

      I do NOT know him! But maybe little 6-year-old Amy met him when she was 6? Who knows! I loved that place. A giraffe put his big old head into our car and we got to feed him a cracker! It was one of the highlights of my childhood. Also, an ostrich tried to eat my uncle’s stomach. I laughed so hard I almost peed my pants. It just kept pecking and pecking him, and those things are HUGE. He was so scared. Hee!

      Baboon butts are STILL funny! :)


  • sj

    First, monkeys are super scary. I think I know the movie you’re talking about with the possessed monkey because it SCARRED ME FOR LIFE.

    Second, the very idea of a helper mule is so ridiculous, I can’t help but want one. “Erm…what’s that?” “Oh, that? It’s just my HELPER MULE! No big, except it totally is because I have one and you don’t!”


    • lucysfootball

      Seriously, that’s how I feel about the helper mule. Like, it’s a bad idea, all around, and really would only come in handy if you lived in the steppes, or something. Which this guy so doesn’t. But oh, do I want a helper mule so badly, you have no idea. We would be such chums.

      Ugh, MONKEYS. They give me the creeps. When my BFF and I went to the zoo in NYC he totally made me go in the monkey house for what seemed like a month. It might have only been about ten minutes but those suckers were EVERYWHERE. *shudder*


      • sj

        I refuse to go in Monkey Houses. They stink and I’m terrified that one of the monkeys will get loose and attack me.


        • lucysfootball

          It was just proof of how much I love BFF. He LOVES monkeys. He wanted to take PHOTOS. And, out of love, I went. For him. (In his defense, he totally allowed me to be a dork on the SNL tour and ask weird questions and be nerdy so it all equaled out.)


  • lahikmajoe

    Ok, first of all: we have a hard enough time finding rentals that allow dogs. Can you imagine trying to sign a lease that allowed helper mules.

    The other thing: you might want to ask one of your more science-inclined friends, but from my understanding, monkeys live a lot longer than you think.

    A friend’s mother had one and after she died that monkey was not only angry about her being gone, but he also stuck around a good while to let everyone know it.


    • Andreas Heinakroon

      They do indeed. Up to 30 – 40 years, depending on the species. And they’re high maintenance.

      Nothing like parrots though. They can live well into their 70s, and require constant stimuli. I want one.


      • lucysfootball

        Ugh, parrots creep me out. They’re awesome in theory, but in reality, one tried to eat my ear one time. No thanks.

        You’d be good with a parrot, though. I always thought the reason I didn’t get along with that parrot was because it realized it was vastly more intelligent than I am. I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t encounter that issue.


    • lucysfootball

      Yeah, it’d be next-to-impossible to find a place that would allow me and my helper mule. That’s why my hermitage of animal rescue that I will purchase with my lottery millions I have yet to win will be AMAZING. You could totally visit. You would love it.

      Ugh, monkeys, with the poo-flinging. No thanks.


  • Mer

    The title did a weird sleeper poke around in my brain until, finally, the theme song came blaring through. Oh, Tracy Morgan.

    All the love for your dad!


  • elaine4queen

    i think i was on a horse even more briefly than you were. while we were still in the whatever it’s called before you go anywhere, stable place, my horse bit the horse in front’s bum. that horse kicked my horse in the teeth, and s/he reared up and tossed me on the cobbles.

    the horse man said i had to get back on ‘or i’d never ride again!’ you’d think i would have jumped right back on but i didn’t. and i never rode again. what i did do though, was not clean the icky wound i had on the elbow i landed on, and subsequently it went manky and i had to go to hospital for a tetanus shot.

    the end.


    • lucysfootball

      I was lucky – mine didn’t buck me off (I think it was almost dead) but the horse my friend was riding got bucky, so we all had to get off because they had to put all the horses away because one horse was being an ass. It was the most anticlimactic trip to the riding stables EVER. Blergh.


  • Low-ku for a Friend | snobbery

    […] Ran into some elves. They were all wearing the same misspelled tee shirt. Sad. The idea for the Helper Mule is from Amy over at Lucy's Football […]


  • sj

    (this will be a bit of a long-winded comment, so I apologize in advance)

    Okay, so last night we were working on our haiku/low-ku post and I was telling Meg what I wanted. At first we were just going to do helper dogs, but then she said she was going to give Legolas a helper horse.

    Me: Wait! OMG, did you read that post about the Helper Mule on Lucy’s Football? He should TOTALLY have a Helper Mule, that would be hilarious!

    Meg: …? Helper Mule?

    Me: [link, reads post again, dissolves into giggle fit] Wait, in addition to the teeshirts, we have to make sure people know they are disabled somehow. Can we make them blind and give them glasses? OR GEORDI VISORS?!

    Meg: How’s this? [link to image she just magicked up]

    Me: BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA, that is perfect! I love that it’s Buddy with the mule! And Legolas! ZOMG, A HELPER UNICORN?! LOOOOOOOOOOVE!

    [an hour goes by, post is assembled, still can’t stop laughing]

    Husband: What is so funny? You’re going to wake everyone up!

    (It was almost 1 am by this time)

    Me: OMG, so Meg and I were working on this post for tomorrow, and she gave Buddy the Elf a Helper Mule and it’s so awesome I can’t stop laughing about it.

    Husband: Wait, Helper Mule?

    Me: Yes! So, this girl Amy, I follow her blog. She was telling this story last week about how one of her dad’s friends is getting a Helper Mule!

    Husband: Dude. He’s not getting a Helper Mule.

    Me: No! He really is! But that’s not the best part! The best part is her conversation with her dad where she’s questioning him abou-

    Husband: No, seriously. I don’t think that’s really a thing.

    Me: Look, will you just let me tell the story?

    Husband: Sorry, go ahead and tell me the story about the non-existent Helper Mule.

    Me: So, she’s trying to figure out what possible use one could have for a Helper Mule…

    Husband: Well, he probably lives on a farm, so a Mule would be more useful than a Rascal.

    Me: NO! HE DOES NOT live on a farm! He lives in town! And he’s got this classy wife, and it’s not like he’s taking people on tours of town with his Helper Mule AND HE HAS A RASCAL ALREADY! So why would he even want a Helper Mule? Like, a Rascal is much less upkeep, and where are they even going to keep it?

    Husband: Dude, I can think of lots of uses for a Helper Mule. I’d totally ride it to the store.

    Me: Then what do you do once you get to the store?! He can’t walk! It’s not like he can just hitch the mule up outside and then CRAWL through the store!

    Husband: NO! You know how they have those little chair parking things at the front of the store, he can just leave the mule there.

    Me: But then…I still don’t understand how he’d do his shopping!

    Husband: The people at the store help him off the mule and put him onto one of the little shopping Rascals they have.

    Me: BUT HE ALREADY HAS A RASCAL! Why wouldn’t he just ride the Rascal to the store and not have to deal with the whole Mule-in-the-Middle thing?

    Husband: I don’t know! I’m not the one with the Helper Mule. Maybe he just didn’t want to deal with getting the Rascal out of the house and to the store? You saw that episode of Seinfeld where George decided it was faster to pick the Rascal up and run! Maybe the mule gets more MPH.

    Me: [on the floor laughing] Okay, but then what once he’s done? Do they help him back on the mule? And then what about his groceries?! Are they going to load them in the saddle bags we’re assuming he has?

    Husband: Of course! I’m sure getting out by himself will be good for him. He’ll feel really independent! Then once he gets home, his classy wife can do the grocery unloading, because he’s all accomplished and enjoying a beer with his mule.

    Me: [dies laughing]

    Husband: So, look, are we going to watch the Walking Dead, or what?



    • lucysfootball

      I love this so much. You & your husband = full of win.

      I tried to explain to my dad tonight that the helper mule had taken on a life of his own on the internet today. His response?

      “You know, that helper mule hasn’t even been delivered yet. It’s like he got a pig in a poke. Only, it’s a mule. In a…well, horse trailer, I guess.”

      Thank you, dad, for providing the internet with hours of awesomeness. Even though you hate when I mention you online.


      • sj

        As I mentioned on twitter, he managed to have this conversation with a straight face. I don’t know how he did it, I could barely finish a sentence without laughing. It was awesome.

        Thanks, Amy’s Dad! Helper Mule is my favourite part of the internet this week!


        • lucysfootball

          I mentioned that Helper Mule had an illustration AND a sonnet and he just said, “I don’t think that thing is EVER going to show up.” Poor lost helper mule!

          I love conversations like that! :)


          • sj

            Now I’m worried that he got scammed. I’m totally picturing a group of seedy looking Russians (I don’t know why they’re Russian, probably because of all the mail-order brides you hear about) sitting around the computer wondering what brilliant idea they can use to bilk American Scum out of their money.

            And…this comment just made me sound like a total xenophobe. >.<


            • lucysfootball

              I KNOW! I worry about that, too. It was EXPENSIVE, too! Thousands of dollars! And it was supposed to have BEEN there by now! I am fairly sure they just pulled a photo of a mule from the web, like I did in my post, and sent it to him, all, “this mule is very helpful” and he was like, “BAM I WANT IT” and there’s no mule.

              It’s a total worry, I’m not going to lie.


              • sj

                ZOMG, I can not stop laughing now. I mean, I feel really bad for the guy if he did get scammed because that’s a pretty shitty thing to do – preying on disabled veterans?! “This mule is very helpful” dude, that totally explains why there are only, like four posts on the entire internet about it. Yours, mine, the epic poem and the one that kind of mentions that it’s a thing.


                • lucysfootball

                  Maybe it’s real. I searched and searched for the site that he supposedly bought it from, though, and couldn’t even find it. That screams shady to me. I’m very good at Google.

                  Isn’t the helper mule just an endless form of entertainment? Even if it’s a possibly SHADY helper mule, it brings joy. I’m actually hoping it’s real, not only because I don’t want the poor guy to get scammed. Because if it is real? I can visit it this summer, and you KNOW I’ll take a million pictures for the internet’s enjoyment! :)


                  • sj

                    Yes, I am too! My best friend doesn’t ever even bother looking for anything anymore. “Why should I look? sj’s google-fu is strong and she’ll find the answer before I can even start searching.”

                    But if you do google it, the first page is riddled with you, me and my friend Kate. So…shadiness abounds.


                    • lucysfootball

                      Wait, we’re the first hits for helper mule? WE RULE HELPER MULE. This is AWESOME. I also am one of the first things that comes up when you Google “sneaky fucker theory.” Those two things = my legacy I will leave to future generations.

                      I am SO ok with that.


  • sj

    (while I wouldn’t mind seeing exactly how skinny we can get your comments to go, I want to be able to read your response, so new comment!)

    YESSSSSS! When I googled it just earlier, it went your post, Kate’s poem, my haiku with Meg’s illustration.

    For a while we were the first image under ‘Hitler North Pole’ but now we get the most hits from people searching for Clan of the Cave Bear stuff. Your legacy is clearly better than mine!


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