tirsdag, januar 23, 2007


After writing this post I discovered that a mouse had been at the peanut butter on the living room trap without setting it off...while I was out writing this. Score one more for Mouse.

The mouse has gotten the best of me so far. I left snaptraps for him as I departed for Wisconsin. I set one outside the hole his pioneering ancestor had carved into the kitchen wall years ago. It’s tucked back in an awkward space between the long sink cabinet and the wall. About 8 inches wide. It generally holds a narrow bucket in which I keep paper grocery bags for recycling materials.

In his defense, the mouse has never once crapped in that shadowed space. And though I’ve seen him on the kitchen counter—this was back when I’d been out of town for most of a month and he must have believed I’d left for good—I’ve never found crap there either.

In fact, the mouse has never actually left a tiny log in view. He either suffers stagefright or he’s very fastidious as rodents go. Or maybe I leave a weird scent around the joint, which might explain why the girl across the hall, who had been leaving her garbage out there until I filed a complaint has now placed a minute (Dare I say mouse-sized?) little scented oil jar outside my door. (What the fuck!? It's like a cute form of harassment.)

And Then There Were Three…

This guitar is dirtier than Mötley Crüe.

I set three traps because I broke the fourth (well, the first) trying to figure out how to set it. I’m not a mechanical genius. I’m not even remedially skilled in mechanics. But destroying one trap helped me understand its design enough to successfully bait the surviving three with peanut butter.

I placed one by that hole in the wall, one beneath the sink (the most recent place I’d found him trying to set up shop), and one behind The Dustiest Guitar in the World in the living room. Behind that guitar is a base-board hole. It had been an entry point for mice.

Back when I was out of town for much of a month (September 2006), a mouse had grown comfortable in that living room hole.

So there I was folding my post-travel laundry. I looked pathetic in my boxers, shirtless, slump-shouldered and feeling a bit punched apart by a trans-Pacific flight. I looked so pathetic that a very cute mouse emerged, eyed me, and hopped into the room to watch me.

He was one of those short hunched mice, much more of a ball shape. He seemed to prefer hopping to running. He seemed to keep his front paws just off the ground, as if they were reserved solely for holding before him in gestures of prayer and kindess. He stared at me from wide, innocent black eyes.

“God dammit!” I shouted.

He hopped backed a bit. Eyed me. So I dropped my shirt and stood and looked for a book to throw at him. By the time I had selected one—because I was thinking about what books I didn’t want mouse remains on—he’d scampered back into hiding. Yet, he watched me from the hole. So I went to the kitchen and found Scrubbing Bubbles and sprayed it in the hole. I’ve not seen a mouse use that hole since.

The Traps Failed

This round only one trap seems to have been visited. It was the one beneath the sink, a trap so sensitive it had gone off by my initial closing of the cabinet once I’d set it.

The mouse had removed the peanut butter without triggering it. Or he’d triggered it, consumed the peanut butter, and, wheezing with laughter, reset it.

A defeated cK reconsiders his strategies. Though he had bagged a live mouse earlier this winter, as the top of the entry indicates the mouse has defeated another trap. This makes the score Mouse 3, cK 1.

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