Wednesday, March 9, 2011

pesky pests

while i was writing on monday, something black streaked across my living room. not wanting to confront something disgusting, i pretended i imagined it, shivered, and went on writing. but then... it reappeared.

yes, the least secretive mouse in the world darted right out onto my kitchen rug. it quivered there for a minute, then fled back under my sink.

my first thought? thank god it wasn 't a roach.

i had a mouse in my house last summer. he'd sneak into my garbage every night and graze. i convinced myself it was just the sound of paper settling in my recycling bin. (yes, i can be highly delusional). but after a week went by, i knew it had to be addressed. i set out traps. fled to work. came home and found my little murdered victim.

now, i sprung my traps back into action. i even used a good blueberry jam to entice it. (after touching the mouse trap with the jam spoon, i stupidly put the spoon back in the jam. this wouldn't be so disgusting, if the mouse trap hadn't still had peanutbutter on the spring from the first go around. do i throw the jam away? i scrapped off the top layer, but i'm not sure i'll ever be able to eat it again. grr and sigh at the same time.)

for the next hour i wrote, waiting and cringing, as the little pest rooted around. it was so overtly loud at one point, i had to look for him. i thought he might have slipped into a wine bottle that's in the recycling, but instead, he was just trying to get the heck out of here by climbing out the plumbing through a hole in my wall. feeling my presence, he slipped off the pipe -- i could almost hear a tiny, mousy "ack!" escape him -- plopped to the floor and vanished.

thank goodness, i haven't heard from him since.

i don't want to find him dead. i know. i know! they're vermin. and in NYC not something that can be treated with kid gloves. last summer, my dad asked if i was going to trap my mouse humanely. i scoffed (because even at my age i still act like a bratt) and said, "dad, it's a pest. there's way too many in this city. if i let it go, it'll just infest someone else's house."

true, but there's also a lot of writers in NYC. what does that make us? and why do we get free reign while mousey gets the giant clamp trap. karma?

though i think the little guy high-tailed (low-tailed, whatever) it out of here, i keep seeing him everywhere. gasping each time.

duh. it's a cord.

duh, it's a nasty bit of organic shower curtain that you really could cut off.

duh. no it's not mouse droppings, but have you ever heard of sweeping?

he's even turning up in my reading materials.

i swear he was number 4. which according to this article in
New York Magazine means he has a human liver inside of him. cute, right?

the whole episode has made me reazile two things.

1. cute as he is, the traps are still out, and kill him i will. the thought makes me a little sad. before i moved here, there would have been no question that i'd have bought a humane trap. hardened NYer? or realistic city dweller. or is that the same thing? either way, i guess i'm now both.

2. i'm not a very good cleaner. i mean, seriously. did you see pictures 2 and 3? how embarrassing. my landlady hired a cleaning lady to do my hallway (as seen here)

and the sight of it made me gasp (with all this gasping, i should have been born in the 1800's. luckily, i don't also swoon.). so this is what clean is, i thought, and simultaneously, how did she do that?

oh, corrie. there is still much to learn.


  1. Throw away the jam, Corrie. Not worth the health risk. Sad, I know...

  2. oh boo. okay, thanks. i needed to see it written.

  3. yeah - I wouldn't share this post with any potential dates. Seriously, THROW AWAY THE JAM. And try to humanely encourage this innocent life to survive somewhere else - do you need to borrow a cat?

  4. haha still haven't thrown it away. but i will! as for the borrowing of a cat, yes please, may i borrow the one that sits in your cookware?

  5. I think snap-traps are pretty humane -- they don't torture the poor things. But glue traps... *shudder* course, they do work better I guess.. <.<

  6. luckily, i haven't seen nor heard the little guy since that day. i keep checking the traps with dread though. but yeah, glue traps. blech.