Readers with good memories may remember that I was locked in a battle of wits many months ago, with some manner of super-rodent possessed of abnormal cunning and intelligence. In common with locations on which the media descend to cover the story ‘du jour’, just because the reports have dried up, it does not necessarily follow that the situation has ended.
In fact the conflict has remained frozen over most of the summer. My foe’s last appearance was in mid July, just after I returned from Russia. I had lifted the traps at my girlfriend’s behest, lest we should return to the smell of decomposing mouse. When Chekov’s away …… We were enjoying an Indian takeaway (the cupboards were bare) when the intruder reappeared, displaying even more insouciance than normal.
It was clearly necessary to remilitarise the living room, re-priming traps and equipping myself with poison (a WMD deterrent if you will). This display of might appeared to do the trick. There hadn’t been sight or sound of the mouse since. Not a scurry around the skirting boards, not a sign of dislodged bait, not a nibble of the stereo’s wires, not so much as a tiny little stool deposited on the carpet. Nothing. Until last night.
My assumption that displaying the awesome hardware available to me had persuaded the vermin to pursue his campaign by other means (i.e. by deciding to hang out in someone else’s house for instance) has proven incorrect. He was merely marshalling his resources, and last night he indulged in a petulant display of defiance, coordinated not from his traditional redoubts in the fuse box and chimney breast, but largely from underneath the settee, which has not, up until now, been an area where he has commanded much support.
It is not possible to compromise with a mouse. By virtue of their mousiness they adhere to sets of behaviour which negate my constitutional and democratic rights (as outlined in the rental agreement). Either the mouse must renounce its mousiness (and perhaps align itself with more respectable creatures, such as spiders, with which I happily cohabit despite differences in culture, identity and political belief) or it must eventually be expelled. It cannot expect to continue crapping all over the living room floor, eating things and generally indulging in behaviour which seeks to stop the room working well and remaining a viable entity.
Bearing this in mind, last night the gloves came off and a sachet of seed like poison was left beneath the settee, on the lid of a tub of ‘Extremely Chocolaty Mini Bites’. Within minutes a sound of rustling seeds on plastic was clearly audible. Removing this menace will ultimately benefit all the residents of the house.