Sunday, September 17, 2006

No longer failures

Passing through the region on my way to a football game (we're not going to discuss which one, or how much we lost by), I stopped at my parents' house for a night. As entertaining as it always is, this is one of the more interesting visits in recent memory.
I woke up in the morning, and stumbled into the kitchen, deperate for something caffeinated. I found a cat staring into the space between the cabinet and the wall. I looked too. It was a second mouse. My dad came into the kitchen a few moments later and asked what I was doing. I informed him about the mouse situation, and he snapped awake. "Keep him there!" he said excitedly. What am I, a cat? He burst into the garage, and reemerged with a 5' tall, 1" diameter copper pipe and a large flashlight.
The flashlight, of course, was too see the dark mouse in the shadows. The giant piece of plumbing was apparently to root it out. He poked in the corner for a while, and the mouse came racing out. I had no idea those things moved so fast. Apparently, it ran across his foot, because he screamed like a little girl. (Please, take a moment to picture this. This is my father. 6' 2", 230 lbs., ex-marine)
The mouse ran into the opposite corner of the room, hidden behind an apron. The cats went wild. I told my dad to catch the mouse, and he responded, " Oh yeah, like I want to get bit!" "Catch it with something," I insisted, gesturing at the plethora of containers available in the kitchen. He reached for an oven mitt and a plastic dish. When he scooped at it, the mouse leaped at least two feet into the air. I didn't know how fast mice moved, but I also didn't know they could fly. This thing was airborne.
It made it across the kitchen and under the fridge somehow. My dad, determined to catch this mouse once and for all, decided to move the fridge. "Here," he thrust the pole at me, "Hold the pike." He backed the fridge out, and the mouse reemerged, moving so fast it was almost blurry. The cats chased it under the kitchen table, one gumming it for a second, then it ran across the dining room into the living room and under the couch.
Not to be outdone, my dad bolted into the living room, and started shaking the couch. The mouse was apparently on to our dirty tricks, because he disappeared. Or so we thought.
I saw it once later in the day, and tried to catch it, but they really do move like bullets. If the cats, who are much more nimble, better equipped, and less in need of caffeinated beverages than I could not catch it, I had no chance.
I left for a football game (which we're not going to talk about), and didn't return until late. I wound up getting stopped in traffic, and the normally one-hour trip took three. I do mean stopped; a double-trailer semi had turned over and was blocking the entire road. Everyone shut their cars off and were walking around. That's not the point. The point is that I was really, really tired when I got home, and just wanted to get into bed.
Except that there was a dead mouse in it.
I burst into the hallway and announced, "There's a dead mouse in my bed and I'm not dealing with it!" Despite my parents' roaring laughter, my dad actually did go take care of the mouse. I insisted he take the comforter it was lying on too.
I'm sure this was a present from one my parents' dear cats to show me how much they missed me. I made sure to pet them very nicely in the morning. But next time, cats, I could really just use a gift card.


Madalyn said...

I would have been screaming like a little girl, too. But, I was once a little girl, so perhaps that makes it more ok. :)

Missed you at the guild meeting on Sunday!

Christine said...

My boyfriend's deceased cat used to bring him the occasional half a mole when she'd go out to play, but only the butt half. Ha!! He never got to see that other half.