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Of Mice and Me…Part 4

If you build a better mousetrap, you will catch better mice.  ~George Gobel

Me holding Rascals c. 1993

This is ironic, I keep writing about mice, yet my affection for them them is very much less than favorable.  In fact, mice in my opinion reside in the revolting and antipathy category.  Regardless, I need to sing my praises of another successful trophy over my mantel, even though it’s not quite what you’d expect.  At least I was completely thrown off of my game.

I’ve said it before and I believe it to be true, the neighborhood mice are picking on me!  I don’t get it, recently I haven’t had much food in the house.  Also my little corner of the world is very clean, I mean bleach clean.  My house is kept  junk and clutter free, I’m pretty much a minimalistic.  So let’s take inventory.  I have no food, a very clean clutter free house and I have a cat.  Why would any mouse decide to take refuse in my personal domain?  The only thing I know to be reality is that I am like my parents and I tend to come and go with the door hanging wide open.  Ok, note to self, learn to keep the door shut, especially after this last episode.

This mouse was haunting me for over a month.  What is really strange, is that I never saw the mouse before or after Storm had it cornered under my dresser.  Coincidentally, that was the same time one of my mouse sticky pads went missing, still never found it!  A few weeks ago I kept finding what I thought were mouse droppings in the strangest places.  On the backs of my couch and chair, my window seal in the living-room, and even on my window seal behind my bed.  I don’t even want to discuss the few that were on my sheets.  Ever since that incidence, it became my nightly ritual to change my sheets and check everywhere before I laid my head down.  It didn’t even look like the mouse was even in my kitchen.  What is wrong with this mouse?

Rascals playing with Dad… just like a cat

One weekend after being away, I came back to a ton of crap, literally crap on my furniture and window seals.  Keep in mind Storm was with me so it wasn’t like she was sleeping on the job. I couldn’t take it!  This meant war.  By this time, I think I had already used up an entire can of Lysol disinfecting everything.  What am I to do?  My dilemma resided in the fact that I couldn’t set out certain traps, for fear Storm would get hurt.  So late, that Sunday night I went to the store and purchased about a dozen of those hockey puck shaped plastic traps that the mouse is suppose to enter and die.  My logic, I’ll have those set out everywhere all the time and when Storm and I go to my parents, I’ll set the deadly traps.  My kitchen looked like a mind field, but I didn’t care.  I was at war and I was determined to win.

Would you believe I checked those traps a couple of times a day and nothing!  The only thing those traps were doing was entertaining my cat!  Apparently she thought I bought her toys to push around the kitchen.

On a side note, if I did believed in reincarnation, I know I can’t come back as a cat.  I am such a horrible mouse catcher!

Now the ultimate test, go away for a few days and leaving out those small sticky pads.  My plan was to leave for the weekend, actually from Thursday to Sunday, since I took off work on Friday to go mentor hunting Deer Hunter, Kyle’s First Deer, with Kyle and dad.  Would you believe, when I got back to my house there was more evidence of the varmint, but no physical body?  I can’t even describe in words how ticked off I was!  Poor Kyle, he was trying to help me disinfect my house and clean up.  He even found one of the sticky pads with hair on it that was partially under the refrigerator.  Now at least, I know I was not loosing my mind, there really was something in the house.  I guess it was a bionic mouse to get out of a trap like that!

Me introducing Jake to the new kittens

What really had me seeing red was my new discovery.  As I opened my refrigerator door, I noticed the light didn’t come on and a wall of warm air hit me.  What?  The stupid beast destroyed my refrigerator?  It did!  This was it, I was at my whits end!  First of all I hate mice with such a passion, and now one was completely terrorizing me and destroying major appliances?  In my own house?  Not right!

That week I went back to the store and decided to get the really big sticky pads and the snap traps.  I was still going to hold my ground and take back my house.  All week long, I cursed at those hockey puck shaped discrete mouse traps.  I kept going on, on how bad they sucked and didn’t work.  Whenever I described the mouse to my sister I would say, “I must have the smartest mouse of its kind in my house!  It’s like a super mouse or a bionic mouse.”  On another side note, every time I discussed the mouse I felt like I was reading from a Dr. Seuss book!  Kinda funny.  Nicole just laughed and suggested that I get an exterminator.  I’ve seen Billy the Exterminator on TV, all they would do is exactly what I was already doing.  Nope this is my war and it will be my victory!

Nicole feeding Rascals as a baby. Her eyes weren’t even open yet…I don’t Nicole’s were either….

By now I’ve learned my opponents movements pretty well.  I know the popular areas of interest and when that critter surfaces.  Now it was time to set the bait.  The following weekend, I made sure the house was unoccupied, but before I did so I set out a bunch of large sticky pads, a bunch of spring traps loaded with peanut butter and I bought some plastic traps containing poison cubes inside to allow the mouse to die within.  Of course let’s not forget the half a dozen plastic hockey shaped mouse traps.  It looked like an active war zone.  I was prepared and this battle was on my home turf, victory was in sight.

To be honest I was skeptical.  Actually, I made the same comment to several people, “If I don’t have a trophy over my mantel by Sunday night then I will seriously put my house up for sell and I’m moving out.  I can’t take this anymore.”  You know what?  I was being very serious.  I know it sounds a bit extreme, but if this was going to be an ongoing problem, then it was one I choose not be apart of.

Three baby raccoons… only Rascals survived

Well as Sunday night rolled around, I planned on having Kyle with me, but alas I didn’t.  No worries, I became callous to the idea of dealing with a dead mouse.  In fact, I was looking forward to this nightmare to end.  As I entered the dark house, I instantly looked at the trap set by the door and the ones in close proximity, while turning on the lights.  I examined my living-room and headed back the hallway to check the few miscellaneous traps.  Nothing!

To be honest, at that point, it’s a little bittersweet.  I really don’t want to clean up a corpse but then again I don’t want to know there is still a mouse running around my house.  Just as I walked around my chair and headed into the kitchen, there it was, with its head trapped in a snap trap pushed onto a sticky pad!  Instead of getting grossed out, or cheering with victory I was somewhat flabbergasted.  I literally had to do a second and third glance, blink a few times and cautiously approach the prisoner.  I didn’t catch a mouse, like a normal person would.  Nope, I caught a chipmunk!  Yes, I caught Alvin!

At that moment I had a rush of thoughts that hit me all at once, allowing me to make sense of the actions that lead up to this point.  The crap on the chairs, which were near a window; the crap on the windows seals, which were incidentally by a window with the blinds partially up for Storm to gaze out; the reason why my small mouse traps never caught a mouse; the reason Storm was never able to kill the rodent; the ability for the animal to take down a major appliance.  It all came together!  I had no idea I was living with Alvin!  More importantly when did Alvin move in?  Well, the only important focus of this story was that he was dead!  Upon closer inspection I found out that he put up a fight before meeting his untimely death.  There were two snap traps set off and a few sticky pads moved around.  But ultimately I won this battle!

After all the shock wore off I called my sister to tell her I wasn’t moving out and I have a prize trophy.  She said, “You caught a chipmunk?  Heather that’s disgusting!”  I retorted, “I’d rather have a chipmunk on my furniture than a mouse.  I actually don’t feel so dirty now.  I’m happy knowing this.”

Since then, my house seems untouched by all creators that move around under cover of darkness.  At least that’s what I tell myself, it helps me sleep at night.  I hope since I killed Alvin, Simon and Theodore aren’t plotting revenge on me.

Read more on my encounters with mice
Of Mice and Me…
Of Mice and Me…Part 2
Of Mice and Me…Part 3

Published inBooks, Movies, ShowsCommon SenseEducation & LearningFamilyNewsObservation & ImaginationPatienceReminiscing

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