Playing cat and mouse

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Ah fall. The season when all of nature attempts to move indoors.

We have a mouse in the house. This (not) news is delivered with the same excitement that accompanies other noteworthy events such as “the sky is blue,” “grass is green” and “mom is screaming again.”

It was evening when a laughing BoyWonder pointed out what had been obvious to the cat for most of the afternoon: We had a mouse perched about 9 feet off the ground on the top of a curtain rod. It was perched up there like some sort of Spider-Mouse.

This explains why the cat stared intently at the window for most of the afternoon and early evening — a fact that went completely over my head.

I have never been what you would call “in tune” with animals. I’m more out of tune. I just don’t pay enough attention. I will be the one that ignores all attempts to warn me of impending disaster.

If dogs could talk, mine would say “look, we barked, we whined, we TRIED, I tell ya, we really did … then we left her to behind to die.”

Usually, our cat is a champ and takes care of all vermin interlopers. As it was, he was clearly trying to decide if that flimsy curtain would hold him if he went up after that mouse.

Mercy granted

In this instance, GirlWonder decided the mouse was a Ninja and, having scaled such impossible heights, deserved to live. Thus, the cat was frustratingly locked away in the kitchen.

GirlWonder, both the brains and brawn of this mission, donned welding gloves and grabbed a shoe box, intent on saving the mouse from the cat and his own poor choices. Thus ensued a lot of hopping (hers and the mouse’s) and screeching (mostly mine) if the mouse came anywhere close to me.

At one point we were down to wild laughter while she helpfully explained that falling from the curtain rod, bouncing off the landing pad (sofa cushion) and then flipping on to a deep shag before scampering off proved the mouse’s advanced survival training.

I think it proved that mice can run awfully fast even when concussed and suffering from internal injuries.

Mercy revoked

As it turns out, Operation Vermin Airlift was not a success. Wild mice are somewhat more reluctant to hop into a cardboard box than you might imagine.

I’m not going to lie: Eventually we lost patience and released the cat.

No one has seen or heard the mouse since, and the cat seems awfully satisfied so I think it safe to say that the natural order of things has been restored once those meddling humans were removed from the mix.

As of today the current Division of Responsibilities via Team Seabolt is thus. BoyWonder is in charge of outdoor nature, pasture maintenance, and goat wrangling when pasture maintenance fails. GirlWonder is in charge of mouse capture.

I am in charge of wondering why in the he#% we don’t live in a nice Penthouse surrounded by pavement — and mousetraps.

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Warm, witty and just a wee bit warped, Kymberly Foster Seabolt is a native of Kent, Ohio, who survived childhood exposure to disco and grew up to marry and move to the country. Her column weaves her special brand of humor with poignant, entertaining, and honest portrayals of parenting, marriage, and real life. She currently lives in northeastern Ohio with her husband, two children, two dogs, two cats, and numerous dust bunnies who wish to remain nameless.

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