Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Learning to Love the Weeds

I Love Buttercups...
Patches of Blue...

I Love Old Clover....

And Clover Brand New!

Yep, it be Spring here on the Third Coast. Our night time low temps creep slowly upward, even though so far we've been enjoying cool winds in the day time.

And it's official: the Skeeters have landed. Thankfully they are still in that morning hangover phase: you know they are there, but they act a bit stoned.

So have the humongo tree roaches that can fly. (HATE those...)

In addition to take stolen moments away from my tax returns to enjoy the good and bad of Nature, I had a bit of a traumatic experience last week.

I walked into our detached garage, like I do 2 dozen times a day or so, and almost did not notice the little teeny brown field mouse sitting frozen with his back to me on the cement floor where it meets the garage door. And when I did notice, I was frozen, too.

I have a bad phobia about them little nasty things. I know that people actually keep them as pets, and since we live on the edge of a field / horse pasture those little "cute" ones are the ones we deal with. And, they are not that smart. But you'll never see me owning one as a pet. They totally freak me out.

So, there we are, frozen, both of us. Finally, my brain gets a thought to step forward: push the button and raise the garage door, like he'll just run right out and leave us alone forever. I know, stupid, like he's someone waiting for an elevator.

Just after I raised my arm and pressed the button, I thought uh-oh, what if he turns around and runs back into the dark recesses of our garage? So, I grabbed a little hand shovel that was hanging nearby.

So, I was ready. But still, mouse time stood still. He finally stirred and sure enough, wheeled himself around. So, what did I do? I batted him with the shovel like I was up at bat, out on the driveway. As I contemplated "what now", I watched him land on his side, right in the drip line of the roof overhead. It was raining, and so water was dripping and dabbling all over him, his face, his fur.

What did he do? Without moving anything else, he opened his mouth and started drinking.

It was then I realized he must have eaten some poison that Hubs has set out in the garage. We've had a few mice in prior years that have ingested it and make it into the pool where they drank themselves to a quick bye-bye. That's always fun scooping them out.

Back to my story...Now, Hubs would have beat the mouse flat with the shovel, or worse, just stepped on him. But I was wearing my pink fur thongs and nothing short of my life being imminently threatened would convince me to bloody-and-guts-up up those babies.

No way. No eff-ing way, okay? So, I fell back on my tried-and-true method for trapping snakes that has proven successful for me.

I ran into the house and grabbed a small wide-mouthed pickle jar from the pantry (I'm a packrat in the kitchen too), filled it a third of the way with water, then stopped in the laundry room and poured it full another third of Clorox bleach. Then I grabbed the tongs that hang there for pulling out clothes from the back of the dryer.

I carried my equipment out to the garage, where the mouse was still there writhing out on the driveway and shuddering in the still-dripping drip line. I placed my jar down on the cement and then picked the mouse up by the tail with my tongs and lowered him into his vat of death, dropped the tongs and screwed that lid on tight.

I wiped the tongs down with alcohol and put them in the dishwasher to run on the Scald setting (what I call the Sterilize setting) all by their lonesome (to avoid having to suppress gagging at the thought that my plate or glass mixed liquids with those tongs), and I'm proud of myself that I did not just throw the tongs away.

When Hubs got home from work a few hours later, I was all proud of myself for being so brave and resourceful, so I told him the story. He rolled his eyes and asked, what do I do with the jar now?

I'm like, dude, don't worry, I'll take care of it. Geez, how sissified can men be sometimes?

The jar stayed there on the garage floor until trash day, when I wrapped it up in bubble wrap, taped it securely, and then placed it in the trash. Problem solved, and no blood stains or guts to clean up.

I guess I could argue that I've built a "better mousetrap" - gives new meaning to "in a pickle". Personally, I can't think of a better way to recycle, can you?

Seems like there's always a test or quiz in Blogland.

For instance, here's the True Color test I found at Colleen's blog. I took it and here's the verdict. You decide, is it me?

Take this test!
You're brown, a credible, stable color that's reminiscent of fine wood, rich leather, and wistful melancholy. Most likely, you're a logical, practical person ruled more by your head than your heart. With your inquisitive mind and insatiable curiosity, you're probably a great problem solver. And you always gather all of the facts before coming to a timely, informed decision. Easily intrigued, you're constantly finding new ways to challenge your mind, whether it's by reading the newspaper, playing a trivia game, or composing a piece of music. Brown is an impartial, neutral color, which means you tend to see the difference between fact and opinion easily and are open to many points of view. Trustworthy and steady, you really are a brown at heart.

Then, I {stupidly} took the typing test over at Kim's blog. Like, did I forget I had arthritis in my hands, or something? I was reminded when I got my score: a big 44 words a minute. Dang. Let's just say that score was much higher when I was 25, and I didn't even do secretarial work.
44 words



Linda said...

I'm still waiting for spring to show up here. You had me lol about the mouse. I would have thrown the tongs away. Fun quizes, I type 42 words a minute and I am a red.

Lida said...

OMG That is the funniest yet saddest story ever the poor mouse and you, good for you u brave girl I would have ran away and never ever looked back.

toners said...

No signs of color here yet...hopefully it won't be long now!

jill said...

Aimeslee that is hilarious LOL

And the images in my head of you and your pink fur thongs, tongs, pickle jar...still laughing!

BTW, you mentioned on my blog that ds is growing up. he growing up and all the adolescent angst that goes with it. Ironically, just this week I get the feeling he is "considering" that girls just might not be so bad.

Kim said...

THANK YOU for the picture of the buttercups, oh how it takes me back to springtime of my childhood! They were always in our yard at Easter and I'd think they were eggs. I think I will borrow your picture and scrap it. :P
Oh God, and the BIG FLYING ROACHES!! AAAAAAAAAAaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaggggggggggggghhhhhhhhh the one thing I HATE ABOUT TEXAS!!!!!!!!!!! My students here in VA do not believe me that such things exist. I have a real and horrible fear of those creatures.

Ryzmomplus2 said...

What a great story of you and a mouse! You are very resourceful...not me! Love how green everything looks - we don't have that yet.

Lynn said...

OMG! this entry is just so funny I almost pee'd myself. I could just picture you there with the mouse. That could be me.

I can't stand those fly roaches either. Thank goodness in NY we don't have them. Don't forget I'm from Florida they are all over there and those damn love bugs--- squished on the windsheild!

I think you could be a brown. I came up yellow. I'm not so sure about that color for me. Also took the typing test and I think it was wrong.. It said 293 words a min. I'm not sure that is possible.
Oh well.. Have a great day

cookievf said...

LOVE your blog, girlfriend! You always make me laugh! You in your pink fuzzy slippers with the tongs and the mouse at the other end is QUITE the visual! LOL

33 words per minute ARRGGGHH!