The Meek Will Inherit Over My Dead Body

Or: how an Idealist evolves into a Pragmatist through better living with(out) mice. Or: in which we witness a Hippie progress into Geezerhood.

You’ll need this image for later:

Peanut butter cups, sticks, and pieces being g...
Image via Wikipedia

Live and Let Live:

  1. Attitude: all life is created equal, and should be honored. (Plus they are cute.)
  2. Ohm. I am One With The Mouse. Ohmmmmm…
  3. Begining of change in attitude: are those…fleas…?
  4. Blech.

Live and Let Go:

  1. Attitude: I am Holier than Thou.
  2. I start The Mouse Relocation Program. I trap the mice in humane traps, and rehome them into nature, driving them an hour  – one way – to a heavily wooded area (with no houses).
  3. I hum “Born Free”. Lift tiny plastic doors: go into the wild little creatures!
  4. Strangely, I have to shake most of them out.  They hang on to domesticity with tenacity.

Live and Regroup:

  1. Attitude: Uh Oh. Hanta virus. 
  2. I’m getting cranky about de-mousing my house 4 at a time, driving an hour detour before work. It doesn’t appear to be making any dent. And I keep forgetting to apply mascara at 5 am. Not professional.

Live and start Justifying:

  1. Attitude: chauffeuring mice back to nature is not my life’s passion. Who knew?
  2. All life is created equal, but all life doesn’t have to live in my house.
  3. Beginning of change in attitude: a mouse bit me when I set it free. Ungrateful little bugger. I HAD to grab it by the tail and yank, it was clinging to the box screaming “NO NO NO…take me HOME.”
  4. Of course it’s cold and damp. It’s the freakin’ WILD.

Live and Let Die:

  1. Attitude: FYI? Thou is waaay Holier than I.  Jane: Rodent Hunter.
  2. I search the hardware store for a product I am certain should exist: poison that will mushroom cloud when approached by mouse, and vaporize mouse instantly.
  3. I am puzzled: all I see are old-fashioned spring-loaded mouse traps. No one has invented a better mouse trap? Seriously?
  4. The old-fashioned traps either slice the mouse in half, or pin them mutilated and somewhat alive to a wooden board.  I don’t care about the violence. I care that I have to clean up the blood and guts.
  5. EW.

I bought mouse traps that can’t poison the dog, if the mouse, after eating the bait, runs around like a tempting play thing.  Instructions: bait traps with peanut butter, the mouse enters, and WHAMMO, it’s trapped inside. Then you throw them away. Tidy.

When I check the traps the next morning? Nothing.

I text Daisy.

Jane: bought a butt load of pet-safe mouse traps.  Nada.  They had all night.

Daisy: what did you use for bait?

Jane: Reese’s peanut butter cups. 2 trick or treaters.  Still have $50 of candy left.

Daisy: You got two? I only got one. Shoot.

Daisy: Wait. Peanut butter cups? CANDY?

Jane: It said use peanut butter? Figured a peanut butter cup would be irresistible…rite?

Daisy: Um. I think we’re projecting. That’s you.

Jane: Oh. True.

Daisy: We need professionals.

Jane: Maybe I can ask Larry? He’ll know how to nuke ’em wo killing dog…

Daisy: Exactly.

30 seconds later Daisy texts me again:

Daisy: Larry said yes.

Jane: Yes, what?

Daisy: he’ll come tomorrow.

Jane: Sunday? Day off. Cruel?

Daisy: Shaun with gasoline, or Larry tomorrow?

Jane: Larry.

Daisy: Toss the peanut butter cups.  You know you want them.

Jane: Drat. I was kinda going with a half for me, half for the mouse kind of thing…

Daisy: Why did I know this…?

I’m insanely relieved we do not have skunks in the house.

I wonder if Larry likes peanut butter cups…?

You know, to thank him.

12 thoughts on “The Meek Will Inherit Over My Dead Body

  1. We, thank God, have never had mice (can’t say “rodents” thanks to my pet guinea pigs 🙂 in the house, but the lady I work for did. The Terminix guy put a sticky trap in the kitchen… and I walked in the next day and saw the tail of the victim sticking out from under the cabinets. AIEEEEEE! I actually called that clown to come back and dispose of the mouse. I refused to pick it up (and clearly, I am not a full-blown rodent hater). He thought I was ridiculous but you know what, I don’t care! Gross.

    I can’t believe you were driving that far out of your way to let them go, or that one ungrateful beast bit you! It’s like the last time I moved a turtle out of the road. Darn thing reached around and chomped on me. He’s lucky I didn’t just drop him…

    Hope whatever you are using works and the chomping noises in the laundry room cease and desist. That is the worst feeling. (And thank goodness Shaun is hard of hearing…)

  2. We use peanut butter smeared on a paper towel and inserted into the trap slot. Works every time. My daughter uses a one way in no way out trap so she never has to actually see them they’re in a container.
    Anyway. Happy Thanksgiving!

  3. Yikes! Sounds like a rather, er, unpleasant situation. I have a mouse situation under my tack trunk at the moment, and I am currently wrestling with how to handle it…. I have a feeling I will run the same course that you traveled.

    We have exactly the same feelings toward Reese’s, by the way. Irresistable.

  4. I’m a meat chomping rodent hater… the best bait we found was a piece of bacon, fried, with a nice bit of fat on it. We caught five mice with one piece before we decided it needed more than a dusting off before resetting the trap.

    A cat may seem like a good idea, but we’ve had cats bring mice and rats (EWWWW!) INTO the house to play with them. And sometimes the plaything escapes….

    Another alternative is a very keen Jack Russell Terrier. Unlike cats, they finish them off quickly – one shake of the head and the little rodent is gone.

  5. You need one of these…

    Best invention EVER! if little red light is flashing, approach with bag in hand – pick up device (without having to look inside) drop contents into bag – Voila!
    Drop some in dog kibble, replace along wall & wait until the next evil vermin falls victim..muahahhahah – OK, I wasn’t always like this, but mice (or god forbid RATS) in my barn is simply not acceptable!

    1. Wow, now there’s a better mousetrap. Thanks for the link! I’m going to pass the info along to the barn owner too. Always good if you can have no poison around animals.

  6. “All life is created equal, but all life doesn’t have to live in my house.” LOL Yup. My journey from Live and Let Live to Live and Let Die was a bit shorter. The previous owner of our house had old fashioned traps. We discovered this one day after wondering what that smell was in the storage room. EW. Then we discovered another. With a wounded-but-not-yet-dead mouse in it. After that I bought humane traps. And learned the hard way that humane traps are only humane if you check them frequently. ::facepalm:: I still have a Live and Let Live attitude toward the chipmunks though. But they aren’t *in* my house. I might feel differently if they were.

  7. Oh, thanks for the Monday morning cheer. I am in a much better mood. Because I don’t have mice? (I hope not) Because I don’t have left-over Halloween candy? (I ate the last piece last night) Because I bought those pet safe traps, too? (And they are sitting in a cabinet, baited with peanut butter, having not enticed a single mouse into the little hole – but I suspect it was because the mouse I did catch was far too large to fit into that tiny hole!)
    Anyway. Good luck! Yes, bait Larry with the PB cups!!

  8. De-rodenting is never fun, no matter how you do it. I’ve had great luck with the snap-traps, although since we often catch rats (gag) I usually tie the traps to something solid nearby. Yes, I’ve had a damaged rodent make off with the trap. If one is still alive after a snap-trap encounter, I drop it (trap and all) into the nearest 5 gallon bucket of water. I’m too much of a wuss to do the shovel method.

    And I’m with Marge – DO NOT use the sticky-pad traps. Eeeugh, what a way to go.

  9. Hi Jane, I’m a long-time lurker, but i just recently went through a very similar situation with mice in my house (animal loving vegetarian to live and let die mouse hunter). Those covered traps never caught a single mouse for me, but these traps are guaranteed to kill and caught all 12 mice that were enjoying my basement: You can buy them at Lowe’s.

    And yes, you can see the poor mouse, but I would approach the trap with a bag in my hand that I would throw over the mouse + trap and then deposit bag and bag-covered mouse + trap into another trash bag.

  10. Do NOT use the sticky-pad traps. They are unforgiveably inhumane. The spring ones usually kill promptly (tho’ alas, not always), and are great under the stove or behind the water heater, where pets can’t reach.

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