My Dad the Mole Hunter

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This is a story so important to shaping the person that I am today I have to run it again. I posted this before last Father’s day and since I had approximately 4 readers at that time I thought those coming later to the party should get a chance to share in the awesomeness that is my dad. I had no idea how much he would enjoy having his story told although he claims some of the facts aren’t quite right (I disagree). So read on and enjoy.

In honor of Father’s Day I wanted to take some time out to talk about my dad Rod. Now there are dozens of stories I could tell including some old favorites involving broken toes. Such as the time when the riding lawn mower fell off the back of the truck onto dad’s bare feet. Or the time when he stepped up onto the seawall in Mexico and a coconut fell off the tree onto his bare foot.

Or the countless stories involving the welding torch which is where our story picks up.
My Dad has always done things his own way, maybe it stems from the fact that he was a cop and felt the rules didn’t exactly apply to him. My favorite story is that of his mole hunting exploits. We lived on a little over 5 acres of which about 2 acres was beautifully manicured lawn. I spent approximately 5 hours on the mower every week. To call my dad persnickety would be the understatement of the year. If you’ve ever seen the anal retentive fisherman on SNL that is Rod. So as it turns out one summer we started to have a bad mole problem on dad’s beloved grass. He started with the usual remedies: metal traps,some kind of water activated white powder that made some kind of mole killing gas, 100′s of gallons of water, M-80′s. Of course all of these attempts were ineffective so he started to escalate. He moved to dumping all the used motor oil we had on our property down the hole. I know I know. Once again that did nothing. Finally one beautiful Saturday I was out riding my bike up and down the driveway and I noticed that dad had pushed the welding cart over onto the lawn. I couldn’t quite see what he was doing but he had the nozzle of the oxy-acetylene torch pushed down one of the mole holes and turns out he was pumping pure acetylene down the hole. If you know anything about these gases you know that acetylene is heavier than air so it quickly filled all of the mole tunnels. Brilliant right? This is where things go terribly wrong. Dad then preceded to grab the torch striker which is effectively a flint that you click back and forth.

Now in my head I’m thinking (Noooooooo!!!!!!, I’m 7, dad’s a grown adult).What happens next is difficult to put into words it’s so spectacular. I would guess the cone of flame that erupted from the mole hole to be approximately 8 feet tall, it was at least 5 and half feet tall as that was the height of my father’s former eyebrows. The explosion caused a deep rumbling in the yard, I’m not sure if it was that or the flames that threw my dad to the ground. If you’ve seen Caddyshack you will no doubt remember the scene when the gopher holes start exploding and the tunnels raise up, that’s exactly what happened. The explosion created a beautiful patchwork of raised tunnels throughout the yard. It was indeed spectacular and in my 36 years of life I have never witnessed it’s equal . Long story short, the mole was fine and he had to hire a professional to come and remove the mole. And yes his eyebrows did eventually grow back. Happy Father’s Day. I Love you Dad.

Now I know there are hundreds of stories you have about your Dads and I’d love to hear each and every one!

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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Erica V. 2010/06/17 at 5:57 am

We were on a family vacation in Bend, OR and had spent the day rafting the Deschutes. It was a tame family outing and we spent much time pulling the raft out of the river and marching single file along the banks until the next put in spot. We returned in the van and made the long trek back to the room. My brother and I flopped onto the couch and Dad went to turn on the TV. (No remote!) As he bent over to do that, we saw that his shorts were ripped from the waistband to the crotch. Apparently he had prepared for our athletic outing by skipping the underwear and gearing up with a jock strap. I will never forget the way we laughed and laughed and do every time I think of that unbelievable moon in Bend.

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paul's wife 2010/06/17 at 4:52 pm

Erica, that is enough to give you nightmares for life!!

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Paul 2010/06/18 at 10:01 am

Erica that is fantastic. I’m just wondering what he was envisioning would occur that he’d need his athletic supporter.

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Budgeting in the Fun Stuff 2010/06/24 at 11:52 am

I’m still laughing at the exploding mole holes! And now the full moon….hahahaha.

My dad spent 27 years in charge of chemical plant safety, so he never had exciting near death experiences at home, but he’s still made me laugh. Okay, so we lived in Holland for 6 months in 1997. I was 15 and my little sisters were 7 and 2. My parents decided to take us to the Anne Frank Memorial in Amsterdam. Little did we know that if you get lost near the memorial, you are in the “Red-Light District”. :-) Yep, a family of five with 2 tiny kids and a teenager were walking around Amsterdam’s most notorious district looking for our car. This was funny, but the funniest part was that we walked by a window with a woman on display and my dad was trying so hard to keep us from seeing anything that he ended walking into a huge statue of a ummmm…a sexual toy for females… and fell flat on his butt. Mom and I were laughing so hard that tears were coming down our face. I couldn’t get to the camera before he did, but it was hilarious!

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James 2010/07/06 at 4:04 pm

i have a friend who just bought his first house and wouldn’t you believe it within the 3 months he has a mole problem i have been over there where he has tried the water trick, the smoke bombs, you name it….sounds like he needs Rod’s expertise…

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hermes handbags 2010/07/07 at 8:27 pm

We were on a family vacation in Bend, OR and had spent the day rafting the Deschutes. It was a tame family outing and we spent much time pulling the raft out of the river and marching single file along the banks until the next put in spot. We returned in the van and made the long trek back to the room. My brother and I flopped onto the couch and Dad went to turn on the TV. (No remote!) As he bent over to do that, we saw that his shorts were ripped from the waistband to the crotch. Apparently he had prepared for our athletic outing by skipping the underwear and gearing up with a jock strap. I will never forget the way we laughed and laughed and do every time I think of that unbelievable moon in Bend.

Reply

Cheryleann 2010/07/29 at 10:33 am

He seems like quite a character.. laughing
thank you for sharing

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