November 4, 2005
I have a mouse in my house. It is such a trauma for me that I must write about it. Yesterday I looked under my couch cushions for the weekly (ok sometimes every 3 weeks since Olive arrived-although this time it had been 7 days) vacuuming, and there I saw unidentified specimen. Being a New Yorker I am well aware of "specimen". I think I have seen enough bugs and stages of bug activity to be an honorary entimologist. When I saw the droppings I immediately thought BUGS...but then I thought...ooh....could it be mouse droppings? I did a little research on the internet and was SO grateful that I wasn't dealing with RAT droppings. It was definitely a toss up between the American Cockroach and a mouse. I collected 3 specimen in a kleenex AND ziploc bag and headed straight out the door to the neighborhood exterminator. I placed it on the counter and asked: "What do I have?" The woman was a little apprehensive b/c she thought there was something alive in the bag, but I told her it was not alive. She looked at it and double-checked with a colleague and came back with: "You have a young mouse" Well the "young" part I must admit made the news a little bit better. I was on the verge of tears all morning. When I told my mom that I had a baby mouse in my house...her warm words were: "Where there's a baby...there's a mommy" Thanks mom. I finally lost it when my over-the-top animal lover friend called. I was hysterical. I was standing right outside my apartment door frozen...I could not take a step inside thinking I would come face to toe with a "young mouse". My other wise friend who lives below suggested I name the mouse and that there was a 1 percent chance I would never see the mouse again and even smaller chance that I would catch it. We'll see...I named it Stanley but when Darby caught wind that we had a pet mouse she quickly renamed the "young mouse" Charlie. She has been looking for him ever since. I think she thinks that I actually bought her a pet (since she has been begging for one: Mom can we have a dog? NO cat? NO mouse? NO fish? NO) and that it legitimately got lost. So last night I identified and cleaned up ALL droppings which frankly were a few too many places more than I would like....and this morning Re-examined all places only to find that now that there were no crumbs in the couch..."young mouse" decided to take said couch apart...yes he gnawed a hole in the couch. So...today/tonight is operation: catch the mouse...and I sure hope we do because I might just do something crazy like move out of the city if I have to add a "young mouse" to my already quite cramped 750 square feet in the sky.
Epilogue: I never saw the mouse, but he stopped leaving his droppings after I covered every single possible hole (including the one behind the oven where he lived) with steel wool.