PermaLink The rodents have taken over02/22/2007 04:42 PM

Two different stories about rodents this week.  As if you were waiting for them.
The rodents have taken over my house.  Suzanne moved the wabbits down last weekend, and they're now living in the Purple Room, which has been nearly completely emptied out so that they can cavort therein and leave little raisins all over everywhere.

Now, properly, as Suzanne would remind me, you and anyone else who chose to listen, these wabbits are lagomorphs, not rodents, and may not even be closely related to rodents.  Apparently the issue was confusing enough that as recently as 1900, they were indeed classed with rodents.  However, unlike everything you've ever seen in a Bugs Bunny cartoon, wabbits have their big chiselly teeth on the bottom, not on the top.  There are other fine differences, like where their teeth have enamel and where the balls are located on male rabbits' undersides, but when it comes down to it, they're just wabbits.

And wabbits is all they'll ever be.

But they are quite hilarious.  We introduced Gus, and then Bert, to them the other night, and Gus was actually quite confused by them.  One of the wabbits was very interested in Gus' tail, since of course wabbits have laughable little tails, not like Gus' majestic yellow shelf-sweeper.  Gus eventually got bored and asked to leave the room.  Bert was much more interested in sniffing the wabbits, and they weren't sure what to make of him.  There was some scrambling on their part, but eventually Bert got bored with them, too, and rolled around on the rug like an idiot to get our attention and forgot all about the wabbits.

We've had all sorts of adventures since I talked to you last.  I'd mentioned that the TDI Passat had eaten itself on the way home from Lotusphere... well, during the ice and snow we had here last week, I hit a guard rail with the gas Passat and destroyed the front end.  These fucking cars are so loaded with plastic and styrofoam that if you practically sneeze on them, they're rendered undriveable.  I slid into a guard rail on an icy patch of I-70 where they hadn't bothered to salt, plow or sand, and I hit the thing at barely 15mph, slow enough that the airbags didn't blow.  The entire front of the car was shoved a couple of inches sideways, and all that plastic crap cut a hole in the radiator.  I basically had enough coolant to make it home, and then spent a day getting Allstate to find me a repair place that could come and get it.  It is now in the shop, though over a week later they still haven't completed the estimate.  

"This car was hit really hard," they said.  Ummm... no.  I was going maybe fifteen, it's just that everything is plastic.

Plastic is fine for soda containers.  It is not as fine as a human transportation container.

Anyway, I'm in some anonymous-looking rental car until they fix it.  The diesel Passat is going up to Walkersville to get a new (used) engine installed whenever the guy comes and gets it.  I don't doubt that that'll be expensive, but with gas rising in price again, I can't afford NOT to rebuild it.  That 52mpg on the way back from Lotusphere haunts me.  The driveway will be empty just in time for Suzanne's movers to come down early next week.  Really, the only things they're carrying are the large pieces of furniture and the piano, almost everything else having been moved by us in our cars.

I have a large mailbox, one of those huge monsters you mostly find in front of farmhouses on rural routes (which is really what my house is).  I tend not to bring the mail in for days at a time because realistically, almost anything important comes to me in email and on the phone.  I stick the old mail in the back of the mailbox and the new mail stays up front.  Well, I have a mail carrier who apparently thinks she's my mother, because every couple of months she leaves me these little Post-It notes in the mailbox threatening to stop delivering mail unless the mailbox is "completely cleared out."

Aside of the obvious issue of, "if you didn't bring me all this fucking shit from supermarkets and WalRusMart, the mailbox wouldn't fill up," my figuring is, if there's room for mail, you deliver the mail.

This last week, she left one of her notes.  I put it back in the mailbox with this note on it:  "Ummm... why?  Do you have allergies?"  I mean, if the supermarket fliers stay in there long enough in damp weather they do get a little musty, so I don't want to trigger a hacking fit in my mail carrier."

"Rodents," she wrote back this morning.  That's all.

OK, think about this.  You're a mouse.  You're looking for something to eat.  Do you (a) go in the barn and eat all the stuff that's in there, (b) go eat seeds from the garden and various plants around the yard, or (c) climb a three-foot steel post, squeeze through a screw-hole the size of a pencil lead into a steel mailbox with a firmly closed door, and eat musty old supermarket fliers?

In ten years I've never seen a sign of a mouse or any other rodent in there.  In fact, in the 40 years of my life where I've had rural delivery of mail, I've never seen a mouse go after the mail unless there was actual food in it, and few if any people send me food.  Or drink.  At least not in the mail.

I think she's just put off that I don't dutifully cart all that crap into the house every single night, as if I'm morally corrupt because I really don't give a shit what's on sale at SuperFresh.  And honestly, they could stop delivering the mail for the rest of my life... I won't miss it much.

And neither will the nonexistent mice.

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Blabber :v

1. Rock03/08/2007 08:03:03 AM

Uhh, those are "pinkies" not "weenies" thank you

Then we called them "minis" when they got hair and looked like little mice.

Pinkies and Minis are excellent reptile food - I know my various snakes loved them when I was a teen

From you friendly neighborhood herpetologist (wannabe).


2. ChangeWarrior (Deb)02/27/2007 06:10:03 PM

It's not the eating, it's the building homes in.
Rodents like shredding paper to make their nests.
I can certainly understand her being unwilling to stick her hand into a box that might/might not be home to a bunch of weenie, [insert favourite disease here]-filled mice.

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