Two days after hurricane Irma hit last year, I found a frog in my toilet. I didn’t know it was there when I sat down. It wasn’t until I felt a strange, recurring waft of breeze on my nether parts that I realized something was moving in the bowl. I stood up and looked, and there it was, four inches of crouching frog. Angry at this intrusion, I tried to flush it back down where I guessed it came from, but it just clung there on the inside. I flushed again, but nope, those pads on their fingers grip porcelain like the glue Phil Swift sells on TV.
I called to my wife and showed her, and she went into a panic: “Get that frog out! Get that frog out!” Then I was in a panic: “How? How am I supposed to get the frog out? Do you have a frog net?” She yelled, “No! I don’t know! Get the frog out!”
Well, the last thing I wanted to do before I have coffee is remove a frog from a toilet, but I rushed into the kitchen and grabbed the strainer from the drawer and a paper plate from the cabinet. I tried to catch it, but it leaped out onto the floor, and then onto the wall, then on the door, and behind the toilet, and back on the wall, and then it leaped onto my bare leg, which pissed me off, because I don’t like frogs on my leg at 6:30 in the morning. Come to think of it, I prefer not to have frogs on any of my skin at all, regardless of the time. I finally trapped it just before it hopped from the linoleum to the hall carpet, and I slid the paper plate under the strainer. I carried the amphibian out to the front yard and tossed it into the grass. I then threw the strainer away, and later that day I bought a new one at Exwork.
I could only guess that the frog had snuck in the day before, when we had the doors open while hauling things back outside that we had brought inside from the yard and patio before Irma, and that it went right to the only pond-like source of water. But how come the dogs didn’t smell it or see it or hear it? Is there such a thing as a Frog Hound? Or maybe they did, and that was one of the times they barked. It’s hard to tell; they bark when a car goes by, when I make a sudden noise in my office, and when a breeze rings the chimes my wife has hanging in front and back, and so I ignore them.
The next day I found another frog in the same small bathroom toilet. You can be sure we were fully inspecting every curved corner of both bowls, master and hallway, before sitting down.
Now familiar with this emergency, I quickly trapped it with the new strainer and a paper plate, and this time I released it across the road in the woods of the for-sale lot—it looked like the same frog to me. But suddenly I wondered and worried if our septic tank was full of tadpoles.
My wife went to the trouble of looking up the problem on the internet, and she informed me that toilets have a vent that leads to the roof, and if its screen is busted, frogs and such can get in. I did not know that, but it’s a better explanation than a colony of septic tadpoles sprouting legs and trying to enter the world through my Kohler. She wanted, and still wants, me to replace the screen. I don’t climb ladders anymore, and so until I discover snakes and water spiders in our toilets (I still look, oh yes), I will not pay to have that done. I am, though, delighted to know what at least one of those mysterious pipes is that sticks up through my shingles.
P.S. I put that strainer in the garage for future use, and bought another one.