Thursday, July 31, 2008
The Mice Will Play
I have a little mouse problem. Last night two small grey mice ran out in the middle of my rug and wrestled with each other. Before I could decide if I should hurl "The Ground Beneath Her Feet" (Salman Rushdie) or "The Blind Assassin" (Margaret Atwood) at them, they were gone. These books should not be taken lightly, they should be thrown with great force. A few years back I killed a mouse by accident. I had it cornered and was going to trap it with a bowl. Not a real plan, I just happened to be holding a plastic bowl at the time. But then I kicked over a stack of Childcraft Encyclopedia (stoop sale treasure) resulting in rodent blunt trauma from "Stories and Fables." A little knowledge is dangerous, but a pile of books on the floor can be fatal.
I thought of borrowing my friend Eleanor's cat, Bhindi. I cat-sat him a few months back, he did a great job chewing the buttons off my shirts and he almost destroyed my printer. So I made him a plush blue bug to get his attention away from my printer. It's probably not the best use for baby alpaca.
At first the fetch 'n' throw routine got his attention away from the printer, but he soon abandoned the blue bug and slinked away. Hours later he came back with something else in his mouth — a plastic frog that I kept on my bathroom sink. He wouldn't give it back so I held him down and pried it from his mouth. He really wanted it, he kept biting my leg. Soon "frog on a string" was born — hours of feline excitement.
I can't believe he prefered a plastic frog over a blue plush toy with orange bug eyes and legs. If he could talk he would've said "Mother of God, Look! Forget that damn bug! It's a frog! And it's tied to string!" I thought again about the cat loan, he might be too picky to be a good mouser only bringing back the more entertaining mice.
Anyhow, I went to a few drug stores bewteen meetings. Duane Reade only carries the old wooden "snappers" and poison. One hardware store had this device that captures live mice so you can release them back into the wild (Prospect Park? Queens?). Are glue traps really that unethical? I had a six-toed cat named Benny years back — lovable but not so bright. He even drooled if he got too excited. One day he dragged something back in, batting it around the kitchen floor. It was mouse in a glue trap. It made the worst long shriek I'd ever heard, but not as loud as the growl that Benny made when I took it away from him. I drowned the mouse in the bathroom as Benny hissed and growling at me from the other side of the door. I then disposed of it properly. What a lazy cat.