Ding-Ding, The Fox

Ding-Ding, The Fox

Fox and Tabasco
Ned Egan Photography

You gotta respect democracy

Last year my folks went out of state to visit my siblings and came home with a taxidermied fox that my brother unloaded on them. Long story. My brother and his wife wanted the dead animal gone and my parents are suckers. I suggested a vote on whether to keep the fox or not (emphasis on NOT). I figured my mom would hate it as much as I did; so a stalemate vote would ensue. I could then claim the twins votes for my own and break the tie. Turns out my Mom loves it. And I was completely voted down. So she stays (the fox is a girl – we are keeping my Mom, too). In theory, we are a democracy. And you gotta respect democracy.

Because who doesn’t want a three foot tall dead fox baring her teeth – with her creepy glass eyes and bleached out coat? She’s got a bit of a mangy look perched on her styrofoam rock, complete with fake fern. And are those even her real teeth? They are awfully white and sharp. And the WORST part is her curled fake tongue. What is it made of? No, never mind. I don’t even want to think about it.

Who does not want a Dead Animal Themed Baby Shower

And my traitor of a mother found the ‘perfect’ place for her. In our living room. In front of the windows. She even has her own spotlight. I’m feeling an awful lot like the mom in A Christmas Story. Only the fox isn’t going to break if I ‘accidentally’ knock her off her ledge (I’m not saying I tried or anything). I had harbored the hope that one of my dogs might “take care of” the problem. But they’ve accepted her as part of the pack.

My Twins love the Fox.

My newly retired father is an artist with a Dad-Joke edge. And he thinks the funniest thing in the world is the song, “What Does the Fox Say?” He has played it non-stop for the twins over the last year and a half, even before the taxidermined fox arrived. He likes to randomly shout, “What does the fox say?” out of context; the same way he used to ask, “Who you gonna call?” in the 1980s. He has done this enough times that when the boys were 15 months old he asked them What-Does-The-Fox-Say and one of them said, “Ding-Ding.” So now the fox has a name.

We hosted a baby shower in the spring and the dead fox got a giant pink paper pom-pom hat (thanks to the decorating help of a friend’s 5 year old). And Mom thought it made her look like Audrey Hepburn. But calling her Audrey never stuck. Ding-Ding has stuck. Like glue.

Lord Help them, they love her.

I tried to be a good sport. I thought it would be a laugh if the boys were foxes for halloween – also, fox sweatshirts were an easy inexpensive toddler costume. They did a photo shoot with a giant pumpkin, and my Dad thought it would be funny to include Ding-Ding. Once they saw her outside, they pretty much wouldn’t take any pictures without the stupid thing in them. I have a couple picture of them standing by the giant pumpkin with no Dead Animals – they are crying because we hid her in a car.

They boys finally decided they want a stuffed animal lovey. We already had a Fox Angel Dear Blankies to go with a corduroy Jelly Cat Fox. Now the blankies are constant companions. And, no surprise, also called Ding-Ding. They go everywhere with us. I can’t even escape Ding-Ding when I’m out of my house.

I often forget to warn people about her. Hilarious… then awkward…. then I have to tell a sheepish recitation of the whole story.

For Christmas Ding-Ding got an elf hat and a gift sac. And after just six months, I’m becoming one of those people who dress up their inanimate animals for the holidays. But I still wouldn’t lose any sleep if burglars came and ransacked our house, so long as they took her too.

A stuffed fox dressed up for Christmas


I feel like I should say, fur is murder.



We share in Fort Birthday

12 Replies to “Ding-Ding, The Fox”

  1. I think a themed fox decoration is a real conversation starter. She looked very cute for Christmas and I am eagerly awaiting Valentine’s pictures.

  2. What is the fox’s natural predator? Wolf? Bear?
    The answer is to get a taxidermy version of either of those. Duh.

    1. True Story: in 1998 I passed up buying a 10 foot tall stuffed polar bear. My husband has always regretted it. I guess, I now regret it too.

  3. I loved my baby shower, ding ding and all. Plus whenever I use my treadmill I get to look at the fish Ned brought back that same trip. Win win.

  4. If the eldest daughter was saddled with the fox I would feel it was your mother’s revenge for the time we failed to tell her the youngest daughter’s fish was dead and let her find it all by her 5 year old self….”Gray Sucker is dead!” However, since it is you, perhaps the revenge is for some other infraction ?

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