Recently I read with my daughter an informational tidbit written for children about sharks. The article said sharks were very scary. In fact, they kill 50 people a year, and one once ate a person so fast they choked. Now, that’s scary stuff. Enough to scare my daughter right out of second grade and into third. Objective completed.
However, that statistic sounded a bit off to me. With a little googling, it appears the author should have said they attacked 50 people per year, not killed. Only about 10 people a year or less die from sharks. But, no harm done. We don’t have much chance being attacked by a shark in eastern Idaho.
I’m not scared of sharks. There are a hundred million sharks (I googled that too), and only 10 people get eaten a year. I’m scared of mice. There are somewhere around 20 billion mice in the world. That’s 2,000 times more mice than sharks. I couldn’t find any stats on how many people rodents kill every year, but more than 10, I’m guessing. When I was a teenager, we had an outbreak of mice in our house. You could hear them scurrying inside the walls, and sometimes see them skitter across the floor. It was horrible.
As a result, I’m scared of any unexplained rustling going on. A few weeks ago, I heard it. A mouse behind the washing machine, nibbling on a piece of paper. Of course, out came the traps. We started with normal traps laced with peanut butter. The mouse ignored them. Sometimes, you will find a mouse cunning enough to eat the peanut butter off without setting off the trap. This mouse didn’t even try.
Every other mouse we’ve had we’ve caught fairly quickly with normal traps. Now we knew we were dealing with an expert. So we did what you do when you face a dilemma these days: ask your Facebook friends for help. They suggested poison and sticky traps. So we got poison and sticky traps, and put them out with the normal traps. Soon walking around our kitchen resembled walking around some medieval torture chamber.
The rustling stopped for a few days. We figured the mouse had eaten some poison bait and then died. But no, after a few days, we could hear it chewing again. We were dealing with super mouse.
We started getting creative. We put cheese on the regular traps. In the morning, the cheese was gone, but the traps had not gone off. Finally, I decided that since the mouse liked to chew on paper so much, I’d just put a bit of paper on a trap and see what happens.
The trap going off woke us up in the middle of the night. Warning: this might get graphic. Vegans and those faint of heart might stop reading now.
I got up to see if there was a mouse in the trap. There was no mouse there. Then I saw the trail of blood the mouse left across the floor. Somehow, the trap had got the mouse, but the mouse had got out and died under our table.
Anyway, I didn’t want the kids getting in mouse blood, so I was up in the middle of the night cleaning. It was like one last way that mouse was getting back at us. I’d say that the mouse was a worthy foe, but I don’t much like placing accolades on vermin. Thankfully, it’s resting in peace, and so are we.
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