Wednesday, January 03, 2007

The Great Mouse Trap, Pt. 3 - FINALLY

Everything happens for a reason. After making several attempts a month ago to finish my mouse story as promised, I realized that the third installment in no way measured up to the first two. The first two were funny and silly. I had a hard time making the third one even remotely amusing since I could sum it up in one sentence:

I caught the mouse, and I threw it out.

Lots of people brought up the story to me in person or through email, which really surprised me, because this blog of mine? I wouldn't recommend it to anyone, really. But after explaining the situation to the people kind enough to inquire, I was handed several different nuggets of advice, my favorite being:

Steve: "Just put on your blog: 'Mouse Story Part 3. I told the mouse I was going to write about him in my blog, and he eventually died of boredom waiting for me to finish, and then I threw him away. THE END.'"

I left off with my naive hope that the live traps would work, and I'd soon be humming "Born Free" as I released him back into the wild, and he scampered into the sunset, persumably having learned his lesson about inhabiting homes and thankful the one he did inhabit was occupied by such a kind and sympathetic animal lover. When I went home for lunch that day, the traps were closed again, the peanut butter eaten, and the mouse long gone. It took me a mere moment to drop the hippie mindset - the mouse had really pissed me off now, if for the only reason that I love peanut butter, and I had wasted four undeserving globs of it on him.

Still on my lunchbreak, I returned to the hardware store I had visited just two days before, and - of course - the same salespeople were working. They all recognized me and asked how my hunt was going... I said I was done screwing around. It was time to get serious. They laughed, and I expertly made my way to the back of the store, heading straight for the pest control aisle. This time, I didn't cringe when I saw the glue traps and the box of poison. I went straight for the spring-loaded kind, picked up two double packs, and headed for the register. The same man once again wished me "happy hunting" as I left, and I returned home to lay my traps. I parted with four more globs of peanut butter. I returned to my office to finish the last three-and-a-half hours of my Friday, fuming and praying that when I caught the sucker, it wouldn't be too disgusting.

A friend was coming to stay with me that weekend, and she was set to arrive between 4:30 and 5:00. I had called her the night before to warn her of my mouse - it was the polite thing to do, I thought. I certainly wouldn't want to arrive at a friend's house anticipating a weekend of drunken debauchery and stumble upon strategically-placed and loaded mouse traps as I walked through the door. She laughed and said she'd come anyway. I only hoped I could beat her to my place to remove the evidence I hoped I'd have before she got there.

Beat her I did, and evidence there was. The first trap I had laid - in the cabinet under the sink which houses two buckets, an extra container of dish soap, and three cans of half-empty paint - had killed the mouse. I was officially a murderer. I saw it laying dead in the trap, and I screamed, of course, then slammed the cabinet shut. The two guys who live in my building also work at Saint Joe, and I figured they'd be arriving home shortly... I could wait up to ten minutes with a dead mouse under my sink if it meant they'd have to touch it instead of me. I practiced my best pouty face and eyelash bat, certain that they wouldnt' be able to resist my charms when I begged one of them to dispose of the rotting rodent carcass. Who could?

Fifteen minutes later, neither of them had arrived home. Then there was a quick knock at the door, and Brandy came in, and for the moment I forgot about the task at hand. We chatted, got caught up, and decided what we'd have for dinner. As an afterthought, she asked me where the traps were placed so that she wouldn't run into one. That's when I remembered it. I told her I had caught the mouse, and she was excited. "Who got rid of it for you?" she asked. She laughed when I told her it was still there, and she convinced me that I didn't need a man - I could do it myself, and she'd be there for moral support.

I tenatively walked over to the sink with an inside-out garbage bag in my hand. I got down on my knees, took a deep breath and held it, and opened the cabinet. With my cat-like reflexes, I scooped the whole thing up quickly... and let out my breath with a wail. "IT'S COLD AND HARD! OH MY GOD!" I shouted loud enough that my neighbors probably heard... and that's just the sentence you want your neighbors to hear permeating your walls on a Friday afternoon after a young woman just entered your building.

I was screaming, Brady was screaming, and we were both laughing at our ultra-girlish displays of disgust and fear. Somehow through all of that, I managed to get the garbage bag tied, slipped that bag into a brown paper lunch bag, and threw the final product into another garbage bag. I screamed the entire time, and once my hands were free, I started shaking them in the air like an excited child on Christmas morning or a complete idiot freaking out in her kitchen about a dead mouse. After putting the bag outside, we both washed our hands for about ten minutes and went about the rest of our evening with pruned fingers.

Which brings me back to my opening statement: Everything happens for a reason. For my month-long blogging hiatus, I've been dying to write anything but the mouse story, but I didn't feel like I could post something different until I finished it. I reluctantly accepted the unfinished fate of my blog, and decided that I'd probably never write again. Until yesterday afternoon when I went to the doctor.

I know it doesn't seem like a trip to the doctor could have anything to do with a mouse murder almost a month and a half stale... but I promise it does. And you'll have to come back tomorrow to find out why.



deuber said...

This reminds me a little of Van Morrison's contractual obligation album...

Just kidding! Thanks for finishing the story. I am overwhelmed with a comforting sense of closure.

Frema said...

Hooray for the conclusion and the death of the mouse!

You are a brave woman. NO WAY would I have touched that thing.

Melanie said...

I'm impressed!

You post more and you post more NOW!

Melanie said...

I will keep blogging as long as you keep reading! And OF COURSE I remember that. I have you to thank for my love of Sinbad = )

Luke said...

You know, "tomorrow" happened a long time ago.