Picture from The Commons on Flickr
Thursday mornings are usually like any other work morning for me. I stumble downstairs, plop down in front of the computer, and spend at least a half an hour convincing myself that I am actually conscious. This morning started as usual, with the only major difference being an elevated level of grogginess from actually sleeping past 7:00 am for the first time in months. Then, the tortilla chip bag that had somehow fallen to the floor began to move. At this point there were two possibilities: either the chips were possessed by the spirit of the Frito Bandito, or I had a mouse in the bag.
Since Nicole and I live near a lake, in the country, surrounded by forest and fields, mice have become a daily reality in our lives. Unfortunately, neither of us have the killer instinct to take care of the problem. I have a weird guilt complex that makes me utterly unable to kill even the smallest living creature, and Nicole isn't exactly a fan of inflicting brutal death either. Thus, our daily routine includes cleaning up after a few furry creatures that apparently can't be litter trained, and continuing to find ways to thwart them in a non-violent fashion. So far, the score in this war has been approximately: Mice 3830, People 0.
Until today, when the people made their first victory. Having a presence of mind far beyond what I normally can manage before 10:00 or so, I quickly grabbed the rustling chip bag and fold the top over itself. Looking through the see-through side, I found lots of chips surrounding one very scared, tiny rodent. If mice can swear, I'm sure there was some very colorful language emanating from among the tortillas.
Most people would have promptly smashed the poor creature and ended the episode right there. I have too much of a soft spot for animals to ever be so brutal. Plus, it's not like the mouse knew any better. I'm sure he thought he hit the proverbial chip gold mine. If I found a bag of tortilla chips 20 times my size, I'm sure I'd want to dive right into it as well.
Thus, I quickly threw together an outfit, forgot my coat even though it's 4o degrees outside, and placed an odd package in my car: a small box with a chip bag sticking out of it, with two chip clips on top and an air hole. I'm sure my neighbors would be a little confused if she would have witnessed me dashing to the car.
The headquarters for the family business is an old feed mill that's been converted into a general town and country store. Since it's nearly as rural as my apartment, I thought it the perfect location to let loose my little prisoner. There's also the matter of the dozen cats that keep the Mill mice free, but I think I managed to distract them long enough to give him a fighting chance. If he's smart, he will thrive and grow his own family of adorable little pests. If he's dumb, well, that's a little less cat food we need to get this week.
Thus, for a brief moment, Goliath managed to defeat David. I'm sure this victory will not go unpunished. If I suddenly find evidence of mouse sized slingshots, I'm running.