The other night, in the chaos of Iggie the Guinea Piggie’s death, the girls thankfully did not see my face. I was trying desperately not to laugh at the irony of the situation.

Days earlier when the doll was first asked to bring Iggie the Guinea Piggie, home, she stopped at my Dad’s eagerly hoping to spread her good news to my sister Ann Marie. That’s when my sister Ann jinxed my doll (and all of us really)!by imparting her own tale (pun intended) of misfortune while caring for a class pet in sixth grade. Evidently, Ann Marie volunteered to take the class gerbil home over the Christmas holiday break; without informing my mother.

We were not what you would call a pet family. In fact, to say my mom was against having animals in the home is a huge understatement. We weren’t even allowed to have a goldfish. According to my mother pets were dirty, disgusting and belonged anywhere else but in or near the vicinity of her home or children. So imagine my mother’s surprise when in walked my sister, in deference to her no pet rule; carrying her class’ pet gerbil; with absolutely no clue on how to care for the darn thing. As you might imagine, the poor rodent never stood a chance.

Being defiant to your mother is one thing, but doing so at the risk of taking on extraordinary responsibilities is quite another matter all together. Little did she know gerbils needed a lot of help to survive. “How was I supposed to know they needed their cage cleaned constantly?” She told the doll. Yes, who knew gerbils were not self sufficient creatures, indeed.

As the result, Ann’s class gerbil did not have the well meaning holiday break my sister intended, rather ended up, very much like Iggie the Guinea Piggie, buried in a backyard. The one startling difference being, the doll actually cared for and about the rodent she brought into our home.

Monday night I called Ann to thank her for the jinx she placed on our family. “Oh, how funny! Tell the doll I’m sorry” she said through laughter. I was laughing too, I mean really what were the odds?


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