Ken & Tess

Why Did The Otter Cross My Road?


The otter crossed Memorywood Drive Of Baxter to get from little Baxter Lake to the wetland situated between Baxter City Hall and White Sand Lake. (That’s not much of a punchline.)  He did get to “the other side”.

It was Monday morning, the first of June, when “Mel Otter” surprised me by scurrying across my path as I approached Highway 210.

He was a sizable and handsome fella and otters, after all, are known to be the most attractive members of the mammalian family tree which includes weasels, wolverines and badgers.  I’m assuming that “he was a he” simply based on the size of the animal.  Males otters tend to be noticeably larger than females.

I can’t recall seeing an otter in the wild since I was kid growing up north of Walker.

Hopefully, our furry neighbor won’t be crossing our road too often this summer because Memorywood has become an increasingly busy stretch of road. “Hey Mel, watch out for us idiots!!”

Why the name “Mel Otter” you ask?

If you’re a baseball nut, you know the answer.

Mel Ott was one of baseball’s most prolific power hitters from the 1920s into the 40s.  Although only 5′ 9″ tall and 165 pounds, Mel managed to slug well over 500 home runs for the New York Giants.

I know.  I know.  It’s always all about baseball.