Monday, January 7, 2013

You Got A Mouse In Your Socket?

Oh, dear. It's just one wacky predicament after another around here. I am seriously going to have to shop my sitcom around again. Those early episodes were nothing compared to the rich tapestry life has been weaving for me lately. If you are squeamish, or require a laugh track with your comedy, you might as well search your 150 Dish Network channels for a Seinfeld rerun. If you think you have a cast-iron constitution, read on.

Hick built our house. We had plans, of course. It's not like he tried to refurbish that foreclosed old lady's shoe after her kids were taken away due to their steady diet of broth, no bread, and sound whippings. Because Hick built it over a span of about six months, he added little touches that he felt a house must have. For example, each of our three bathrooms has a ceiling vent fan/light fixture. So whenever you turn on the overhead light, that vent fan comes on. Whether you need it or not. At first this bothered me, that unneeded sound and consumption of electricity. But I've grown used to it.

Our house is as old as The Pony. While he grows stronger every day, our house is beginning to age. Last week, I flipped on the light in our master bathroom, and silence slapped me in the face. The light worked. But the fan had stopped. I informed Hick. He said he would pick up a kit and replace it. Saturday, he finally got around to it. Not that he was lolling around all week in his underwear, laid back in his recliner, eating bonbons. He can't have sweets.

I had noticed that the nonworking fan light was full of bugs. They seemed to appear all at once. Or maybe I never looked up at that fan light while it was working, and they had accumulated. Hick roped The Pony into helping him. He got out a stepstool thingy that my mom gave us for Christmas one year, and had The Pony on hand to hand him tools. They put the new fan light in after bowling league. When I went into the bathroom, I stepped in some of their handiwork. The wastebasket was littered with more black sprinkles than a Swensen's ice cream sundae. I picked up the rug by the shower and shook a few more in.

Sunday morning, I looked up at my fan light, happily whirring away, and saw more bugs. Black spots. Uniformly-shaped black spots. I ran out to confront Hick. "Why do we have so many bugs already in the light? You just put in a new one. What if they're not bugs....what if...they're MOUSE TURDS?"

"I thought about that. I need to vent those fans to the outside. All this time, I've just vented them up into the attic. We might have a mouse, after this cold snap. We had one in the garage. I'll put a trap up in the light."

"Well, you need to. Or I'm calling an exterminator. I'm not catching the hantavirus because you didn't put a fan in right." Yeah. I know the hantavirus is out west. But Hick doesn't. Still, at 6:30, he had not yet put in that trap. I called on Genius, the more dextrous of my two boys. Besides, he's always gone, and hasn't done his share of Hick-helping lately.

"Come in here and get two mousetraps out from under the sink." It's not that we're infested. They've been there a couple years, since we had a mouse in the basement.

"Why am I getting mousetraps?"

"You're going to take two up in the attic. Put them where you can see them every evening when you have to go check to see if we caught a mouse."

"We don't have a mouse!"

"Yes, we do. In the bathroom light. There was mouse poop."

"That was bugs!"

"Bugs are not all the same shape and size."

"You'll have to bait them."

I put on a dash of peanut butter, and stuck a morsel of sliced cheddar to it. Off Genius went, into the attic. He was gone about ten minutes. "Are you all right up there?"

"I can't make them stay set. This is stupid."

He used to have trouble setting them, snapping his fingers in the trap. I didn't hear any cries of pain this time. Hick reared his oblivious head. "What's he doing?"

"Mom has me setting mousetraps in the attic!"

"I SAID I'd put one in the light. Come back down here!" Hick stomped into the kitchen. "Huh! No wonder. That's too much peanut butter." He slashed the mouse's portions, and headed for the bathroom. I could not take the drama, and escaped to my dark basement lair.

TO BE CONTINUED...The sitcom of my life has two-parters, you know.


  1. I'm going to sit here, quiet as a mouse, waiting for the rest of this tale...

  2. I'll hold my baited breath to learn what happened.

  3. Every day is a sitcom when you're a home owner. An aging house and a Mr. Fixit hubby can provide more blog fodder than a circus.

    p.s. maybe Western mice are the only ones who share their hanta but they still have the same weakness for peanut butter/cheese sacks on a trap.

  4. p.p.s. Love your title and that line, "Not that he was lolling around all week in his underwear, laid back in his recliner, eating bonbons. He can't have sweets."

  5. Now I have to follow so I don't miss part 2

  6. Sioux,
    If you value your life, Madam, that mouse impersonation is not doing you any favors.

    Make sure you're not exhaling the fumes of peanut butter and cheese. Or you shall go the way of Madam above.

    On the other hand, every day is a circus when you're an aging-husband owner, and constantly trying to fix him up.

    As for the weaknesses of mice, please explain that to Madam and Stephen. They like to live dangerously, it seems.

    I see that my point was made concerning the mousing efforts of Hick.

    Well, it's not like there won't be similar incidents in the near future.

    All I can say is...the mouse can't say the same.

  7. That's something I can always say about my ex husband. He was good at setting mousetraps and disposing of them. I might be too squeamish to read the rest, but now I must know what happens...especially since I too get mice in the attic every year when the weather gets cold.

  8. Tammy,
    You might not want to follow the mouse-ridding techniques of Hick. Do like my mom, and get one of those sticky trap boxes, then toss it outside by the creek when you get a mouse in it. Or have a teenage boy toss it for you.

    Forget about cats. We have four. They are the reason for the attic mice, which started out as garage mice, and ran along the soffit vents to the house until they found entry. Lazy fat cats.