Recently I received the question, What IS Pepper? (Look to the RIGHT----->)
Pepper is a sugar glider, a flying squirrel, the genus name Petaurus breviceps (to get all scienc-y on you), basically a small gliding marsupial, and she is part of the dynamic duo of Chili and Pepper, reasons number 2 and 3 on the “why we now have to hire house sitters” list.
Chili (pictured above) is Pepper's brother. Which brings us to one of the stranger conversations I’ve ever had in my life. The five (+Chloe) of us were sitting at the adoption site meeting Chili and Pepper for the first time when the subject of Chili and Pepper’s relationship arose. David, ever the scientist, asked if the babies were monozygotic or dizygotic.
Let me stop right here and dumb it down for us below IQ 140 folk and tell you that I had to look up monozygotic and dizygotic when I got home. Mono=1 egg/twins, and Di=2 eggs/twins. Duh, twins. He was asking if they were twins. Okay, back to the story.
Gail, the breeder, not skipping a beat, proceeds to inform us that marsupial females have two lateral vaginas, which lead to separate uteruses, but both open externally through the same orifice. A third canal, the median vagina, is used for birth. She goes on to inform us that males have a two-pronged penis. Hum…in…a…what???? You lost me at 2 vaginas, I caught back up with you at uterus, then I blacked out again at 2 pronged penis.
David and I look at each other, then both look at our angelic 10 year old Bubba sitting between us. This is NOT going to be good. Did this woman just tell us, in front of Bubba, that one of our new cuddly babies has a two pronged penis? Why would Gail, who does not know if we have even broached the subject of the birds and the bees with Bubba (which we have BTW), give us the blow by blow on marsupial reproduction?
I flash to the doorbell ringing at our house and some new church friends entering our home for the first time. We sit down to a meal with these fine new friends and Bubba blurts in Tourette’s like fashion, “Chili’s penis has two prongs!” David seems to be flashing on the same scenario.
Let’s just say we are waiting for that gem to come out at the most in opportune time, say Easter dinner with all the family, or waiting to invite friends over until Bubba develops his filter.
And, yes, Chili and Pepper really do fly.