Monday, March 05, 2007

"Blowing up pigeons"

Don't go and get all worried about this post's heading. My daughter, B, used this expression about a week ago to describe the way that the pigeons looked downtown when the wind ruffled their feathers (no pun intended).
She reminded me of her homemade euphemism this afternoon during the car ride home from school as CB and N recounted a tale so shocking it almost kept us from entering our house this morning.
I'd like to go on the record, if I may, as stating that I am not an overly delicate and fragile female creature. I am generally not afraid to get my hands dirty (remember, I have six kids...)but one thing turns me into the proto-typical frantic woman screaming from atop the nearest chair---MICE---and there was one a big, fat, blowing up mouse in my garage as I hopped out of the driver's seat this morning.
(Ed. note: I have already shared this story with my mother who between laughs kept saying, "I'm so sorry to be laughing at you...it's really not funny...mawahahahaha" and who clearly did not feel my pain so this is my attempt at a little well deserved sympathy for my pathetic mouseaphobic self)
As a point of reference, my last close encounter of the rodent kind (minus the trophy ones our cat drops on the front porch) was at a school I taught at in Alabama. I was setting up my classroom when I noticed a slivery flash along the floorboard. As I made my way, screeching, along my students' desktops the headmaster came in with the custodian who together solved my problem with my teaching bag and a large shovel. Both I and my teaching bag have never been the same. But I digress.
So, as soon as my feet hit the floor in the garage and I noticed M-I-C-K-E-Y curled up at the bottom of the stairs headed into the house, I did what any self-respecting lady would do and slammed the open car doors (you know, before it could jump inside the car!) and picked up my cell phone to call my husband.
My husband calmly talked me through the situation (all that Army training prepared him well for crises such as this). While I shuttled the three crying little ones out of my car one at a time and onto the safety of the driveway, where they could then run for the cover of the front porch, my beloved said he was on his way home to deal with the varmint. We quickly unlocked the front door and stepped inside as visions of escape artist mice sliding under locked doors flooded my thoughts. I contemplated rolling a towel up and cramming it up against the garage entry door inside the house as a preventative measure, but was certain that if I did that little brown ball of fur would come shooting out across the door sill and my husband would find no mouse, assume everything was fine and never make his way into the house where I would lay passed out on the entry floor. Fortuntely, as this mental exchange continued in my mind, I heard the melodious sound of the other garage door opening. Help had arrived!! After listening to a few minutes of quiet shuffling noises on the other side of the door, it finally opened and my husband walked in and sounded the all clear. Apparently, my hero drove twenty minutes home to rescue me and my babies from a dead mouse! Sigh. The good news is now that we've run through this drill, we'll be operation ready when the real thing happens!

6 comments:

Katie said...

I am going to forward this post to someone who will feel your pain completely. My sister. I dare say that she would have reacted the exact same way had Mickey greeted her in her own garage! I am not sure that I knew that you and Betsy both shared the same overwhelming fear of the mouse. Not to scare you, but Betsy always says that the mouse doesn't travel alone...
Glad you're safe!

patjrsmom said...

Oh no! I may never sleep again! I'll be like Bill Murray crafting little clay look-alikes to trap them..."First, you got to think like them...you gotta get inside their head!"

Julie Cooper said...

Loved your story!! Two winters ago we spotted a mouse in our garage. It scurried right next to our very heavy Blessed Mary statue (where we were storing her for the winter months). Brett ran over to the statue, tipped her a bit, and then SMASH -- right down on the mouse! Needless to say, Mary has always been there to help us.

patjrsmom said...

Julie, That is too funny! Clearly, I need to get a BVM statue for my garage to protect me from all my rodent fears.

5KidMom said...

You definitely have sympathy from me. I am SEVERELY mouse-phobic as well. Shortly after we moved into our new house (in a new development), it became quite clear that the local ecosystem had been stirred up by all the recent construction. We had mice ALL OVER the garage. It was a regular invasion!! My husband and sons shopped for traps, and took great pride in keeping them stocked and emptied when one of the unsuspecting vermin paid them a visit. In a three week period, they caught 18 mice! Needless to say, I didn't go in the garage for about 6 months. In spite of the fact that there has not been a single sign of reinfestation for almost a year, I still refuse to take one step into the garage without every single light on.

patjrsmom said...

Okay, I am feel duly sympathized with and yet strangely apprehensive about walking through my garage alone or in the dark ever again! I think I need to invest in a few more cats. Although I'd venture to guess that my sweet husband would rather drive home ten times a day than house any more furry felines here on the ark!