We have a mouse in our house. Or more accurately, we have a mouse in our flat. Let’s face it, no one can afford to own a house in London. I’m not actually sure they exist in this city. Sure, there are town houses. And penthouses. But a house: stoically alone, refusing to share its exterior walls, delineated from neighbouring dwellers with a boundary fence, and possibly sporting a patio, small courtyard, garden patch or grassed area out the back? I don’t think so. However, saying that we have a mouse in the house has a much nicer ring to the description of this otherwise horrifying ordeal.
My housemate, Brian, was the first to suspect his presence when he found the little presents that the mouse had left for us behind our bin. However, these presents were not anything to get excited about.
The excreted presents were left in order to taunt us with his presence. They were his calling card, like the severed limbs left by a serial killer who wants you to know that he committed the crime, he would commit it again and you would never be able to catch him.
A few nights after Brian’s discovery, JD and I were on the couch watching the delightfully bizarre The Skin I Live In, when we heard scratching come from the kitchen cupboards. I immediately spun around. JD ignored it. Soon, we hear more scratching and I paused the film to listen. Scratch, scratch, scratch. JD got annoyed and told me to turn the movie back on; he had heard the noise, he just didn’t seem care about it.
I turned the movie back on and we watch the movie for another five minutes. Then, we heard a small thud, followed by a series of shrill squeaks. I jumped up on the couch, turned around and pointed. There he was – the little monster – scampering from the oven only to retreat under the fridge. I was outraged. And disgusted. How dare this little creature invade our home! I was suddenly on a mission to catch the vermin, however JD couldn’t be more cavalier.
“Ohhh, it’s cuuuuute”, JD proclaimed.
It was not cute. It’s appearance was a mere facade. A Darwinian defence mechanism, like a peacock’s feathers, an armidillo’s hide or Fran Drescher’s voice. The mouse has adopted a cute appearance to appease a cartoon generation, thereby saving him from attack.
It is notcute. It is evil. It is the carrier of a plague that killed nearly a hundred million people. “Ooooh, the plague is long gone. Now shut up and watch the movie.”
A few nights later, JD had just finished doing the dishes when sniffed the air and announced that the place was “starting to smell like a mouse”. I was not amused. I reproved JD for trying to wind me up, after days of his cheeky insistence that we should let the little demon be. But, he insisted that he could smell whiskers and damp fur. A few moments later, when JD had retired to the couch, we saw him again: popping his little demon head out from under the oven, taunting me, and probably winking at JD. If JD had his way, we would merely set a trap to catch the little guy, unharmed, so that he could set him free into the wild (the alley) to hang out with all of his little buddies. I have two problems with this.Firstly, my only experience with setting up non-lethal mouse traps is with the popular Hasbro board game, aptly titled Mouse Trap. Whilst it was bright and colourful, the idea was fun and setting up the trap was exciting, the trap would rarely work without some kind of human intervention. I remember when my siblings and were I kids and we would all get excited and crank the lever with bated breath when it was time to set off the trap, only to be disappointed nine times out of ten as we had to push the little marble along at some point to get it through the series of planks, see-saws, buckets and chutes. Also, the entire mechanism for the trap was so slow that any real mouse would nabbed the cheese and run back to its den before the cage was released on its devilish hide. It was an entirely ineffective means to an end.
My second issue is based on ideological grounds. At the end of the day,
I want him DEAD! I want his family DEAD! I want his house burned to the GROUND! I wanna go there in the middle of the night and I wanna PISS ON HIS ASHES!
An extreme reaction, perhaps. In actual fact, whilst I have said that I am determined to kill him, a week has passed and I am yet to do anything about it. I have been pretty
lazy busy after all, working 10 hour days, watching Mad Men and Veep. Plus I have a new gym routine. The usual.
However, this morning JD sent me a link to this news article. For those of you who aren’t really “into” the news, the article reports that a man in the US recently got bitten by a mouse while trying to get it off his cat and now he has the plague.
T H E P L A G U E.
In this day and age.
Tonight, I am buying a blow torch.