Sunday, July 09, 2006

Grey Anatomy

The mouse ball has not been located yet. I imagine it's been since used as a toy and is under the couch or someplace else that little arms can no longer reach and bigger arms can't lift.

In any event, no mouse ball, and for this, you should be grateful.

Otherwise you might have had to look at pictures of mouse balls. And legs, and beady little eyes. All in the mouth of a cat.

It was a fun morning here in the Rose Garden.

I woke up, was calmly checking e-mail, when a loud KER-THUMP! came from the kitchen. The dog was still in bed, Aslan was next to me, so I think we can all deduce who caused it.

And in came Trevor, trotting merrily around the room with the other cause of the ker-thump. A mouse. In his mouth. (say that three times fast)

He clearly wanted to do something with it, and our house clearly wasn't set up properly, as he trotted up and down the length of the house several times with it in his mouth.

Now, I get that animal instinct is strong. I never blame Trevor for mousing, though it sickens me. I don't mind mice as beings, though I do very very much mind seeing hurt or frightened animals, and dead one's ain't much better. But Trevor's doing his job, and mice carry diseases, so he's protecting me as well. And there doesn't seem to be anything I can do to keep them away, since the house sits on dirt, and they're coming up in places that haven't seen food in ages (the stove, for example. yes, seriously) so it's not as though it's a sign of our being unclean.

In any event, he had caught a mouse, and something had to be done. My first thought was that if I could get him to take the mouse outside (Trevor is an unwillingly indoor cat) I could get him to drop the mouse and then shoo him back into the house. I don't know why I thought this, but leaving the door standing open for a solid fifteen minutes did nothing to seduce him into the wild outsides. After a good bit of coaxing, he put the mouse down to follow me outside.


The mouse was down just long enough to dart under this huge (ugly) monstrosity of an armchair we have. Now, I couldn't move the chair for fear of squashing the mouse, and leaving his remains under there, or breaking part of Trevor, who was now wedged so far under the chair I was convinced he'd gnawed off his own arms and was just throwing them in an attempt to recatch the mouse.

Whatever his tack, it did work, because he did catch the mouse, this time breaking its back so that now instead of running, it was sort of twitching. He picked it up and neatly put it on top of a book that was on the floor (in my defense, this was actually my husband's book) and watched, waiting for it to run. I picked up the book with vague heeby-jeeby like utterings, and tossed the mouse outside, out of the range of any of my family members.


Well, now Trevor's all depressed because I took away his toy, and he's staked out at the area where he last saw the mouse, in the hopes it will return.

And so while I have no mouse ball with which to show you mouse balls, I do have a poem for you. I wrote this four years ago, roughly, when I was doing the morning radio show in NY State. We had a regular Friday segment, in which I would read an "ode". It actually became a pretty popular segment, with people you'd never expect to enjoy the poems (think big, burly construction workers) coming up and complimenting me. Anyway, this was one of those Odes - The "Ode to a Surprise Guest." Enjoy.

After a long week at work, with one day more to go
I was thoroughly exhausted, and fast asleep, you know.
When there, through my comatose state came some sounds -
Thumping and squeaking - was someone invading my grounds?
Were the windows broken into? Did I need to call the cops?
What was the source of those intimidating pops?
I awakened from my slumber, in quite a cranky mood
Mumbling some comments that were more than slightly crude
And there he was - the victim of a feline play attack
There was Trevor pouncing joyfully - with Misha bringing up the back
And the piercing squeaks of Mickey echoed through my little house
For there, in my apartment, was a frightened little mouse
And I quickly debated the consequences of telephoning Jeff
But I thought a rescue call at midnight might result in my own death
Now, lest you think I'm chicken, let me first make one thing clear
I have no fear of animals, be they far or be they near
It's more a fear of leftovers should Trevor get his wish
And stepping on the limp remains of kitty's yummy dish
So into the office with Trevor (he is definitely unhappy about being contained)
And the much better behaved Misha could barely be restrained
I made attempts to coral the mouse into a cardboard box
To free his little furry self by outside trees and rocks
When up the leg of my sweatpants did little Mickey skitter
And I must admit, the attack on me did set me in a twitter
And a very wimpy, girlish squeal came flying from my lips
It's embarrassing to admit it, but I was starting to lose my grip
Then Mickey bravely made his break, and ran for the heater vent
And just in time, for obviously, my sanity was spent
So back into my bed I crawled with eyes glued open wide
But back to sleep I could not fall, no matter how I tried
For Mickey did not go to school - his lesson was not learned
And back again he bravely dared - the stupid mouse returned!
And louder this time were the squeaks, as both cats joined the game
And no matter how I chased them, their fervor went untamed
I couldn't watch that poor small mouse became a kitty snack
The furry little feline hit, the goal; a mouse to whack
So all night long I sat alone (the bedroom doors shut tight
To keep my loving babies out, lest I witness Mickey's plight)
And this morning when I dared to leave the safety of my room
I tiptoed carefully across the floor, in hopes of avoiding the doom
But Mickey was nowhere in sight - is it possible he escaped?
I do not know - and thanks to that more sleepless nights are shaped.


Blogger sheep#100 said...

Hooray for Trevor!

11:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

For those who don't believe you when you tell them I'm a geek:

It took me until the bit where the mouse darted under the chair before I figured out you weren't talking about a computer interface device.

I'm with you now.

1:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

While many people will, no doubt, think you're a little nuts for saving the mouse -- I'm with you. We have mice in our basement. We used live traps to catch them (no cats, here, just dogs) and then release them on the far side of the property. They figured out how to outsmart the traps. *sigh* We spent two weeks trying to find and plug any spot where they may be coming in. For the most part I think they've moved on, but I don't think they're completely gone. But as long as they stay down there (and amazingly they've never ventured into the main floor of the house) I'm not going to get too terribly upset.

Besides, we're about to have our annual visit from the bat. *sigh* We live downtown -- not in the middle of the country. We've got more varmits around here (mostly outside) than anywhere else we've ever lived.

2:00 PM  
Blogger KT said...

Poor Trevor and poor mouse!

Add another sock to the count, though, I finished the first of the Cloverleafs last night.

3:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm so glad I just have dogs. And then only one of them with teeth.

But I'm seriously thinking about buying you a new mouse (computer one) as a present.

7:36 PM  
Blogger Sydney Harper said...

It's even worse if you get a flying squirrel in your house. In my case, though, I was able to get it outside before the cat got it.

9:48 PM  
Blogger Hannah said...

Love the poem!

7:39 AM  
Blogger Laura :) said...

Oh my gosh, girl, you crack me up! Love your poem, love your story, love you!

Love (just to be redundant),
Laura :)

8:55 AM  
Blogger Liz said...

Heh, my Ivan cat, who you have met is our sadly largely inept mouser. Max is the mouser in our house! :) I bet Oscar would be a ghreat mouser given the chance... :)

10:21 AM  
Blogger Margaret said...

Love your story & Poem.

We too have a couple of mousers . . . one brought her find into our bed in the middle of the night one time and wanted me to play "fetch" with it!!! at 2 am. Just nuts. . . .

And did I ever tell you about rabbit for breakfast???? That was just too much . . .

BTW: my MIL's new kitten is named Misha!

Thanks for the smile,


8:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah, yes. The baby robins under the couch, the parade of headless chipmunks on the front steps.
I hope you praised poor, innocent Trevor.

7:35 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

I loved the ode. It particularly hit home on Monday night when we heard our own THUMP at 4:00 in the morning. Bartles had suddenly decided he was a mouser after 12 years, now he decides to catch a mouse at 4:00 am!

8:50 AM  

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