A few years ago, my best friend, Mark (you know, the one whose car I stole?), was forced to spend a great deal of time in China and Australia for work. My friend, the world traveler. So the first time he left for China, I would pick up his mail, pay a few bills (with the checks that he had left), and I also made it my business to clean his apartment–including the bathroom (which was guy-living-alone-in-apartment-gross).
One hot summer day, I went over there to drop the mail and survey the apt…I noticed a great deal of strange little black specks that weren’t there before…specs that, I could only hope were something or other from the maintenance guy who came out during the week. Upon further inspection, I realized that it was rodent poop.
So, being the good friend that I was, I cleaned the counters, the stove, the floor, and the sink. I did a thorough inspection of the apartment, and found more mouse poop on top of the fridge, inside drawers and cabinets, and in the laundry room. I made sure that there was no open food anywhere for the little punk to procure. The mouse, whom I affectionately named Jerry, had not yet ventured beyond the realm of the small galley kitchen, so this didn’t take more than an hour. For the time being, it was handled.
I realized that this situation may have been worse than the family of mice who decided that taking up residence in my car’s engine was a good idea. (Oh yes, one morning after the discovery of a dead battery, I opened the hood of my car to discover a charred mouse atop my engine.)
The next time Mark went away, I moved in. After the first poop sighting, I thought taking up residence each time Mark was away was the smart thing to do. I knew to clean up any mess that was made and to keep all food out of sight. This was great for many reasons, the biggest of which was that I lived with my parents and Mark did not. So it was almost like I had my own apartment for a few weeks at a time. It just happened to be an apartment with an unwanted roommate.
I considered bringing my cat over to Mark’s apartment…
After a few more months of my arch enemy, who was in fact little bigger than my nose, setting up shop in my faux apartment while Mark gallivanted around the globe, I was getting used to the idea of having a tiny roommate in this small space.
Of course, I still despised the thought of sharing space with an icky rodent that could be carrying god only knows what diseases. I didn’t want to deal with creepy crawlies, and definitely didn’t want to deal with mice.
But it was funny… him turned out to be kinda cute when I eventually met him…My heart was racing from the obnoxious screaming that ensued the day I met Jerry, the damn mouse. The little bastard was in the living room. It was strange…I saw something out of the corner of my eye, and I first thought it was something in the air, like a fly…and I thought to myself, Da fuck? But when it happened again, I realized that it was the evil mouse.
We stared at each other briefly before I screamed, and he ran back to the living room. I jumped on the dining room chair. I stood there, scanning my surroundings in a militaryesque stance, looking for Jerry, wherever he might have been hiding… And then I saw him…cowering like a little mouse under the couch…and I thought to myself…Awww you’re cute. I still want to kill you (but not really kill you because that’s horrible)…but you’re cute.
He reminded me of Axl Rose, our first gerbil. And so I thought, I can’t kill this cute little thing…so I let him quickly scamper back to the kitchen…while I was safely on my chair…I watched him from my chair for a few minutes, as he tried to peek out at me from under the dishwasher. I yelled, “Don’t even think about it,” and Jerry listened. He shuffled back underneath, and I never saw him again.
Oh Jerry… I remember you… and your rodent poop, and your C freaking out… and your ME freaking out…
Good times, good times.
I absolutely love your blog Chrissy!!
I love how you make me laugh at a super scary thing! Bugs and mice. No thanks!
I know right?!
NO rodents but my old apartment was an ancient walk-up that was surrounded by big old trees and in the spring I was killing a spider a week in my place because they’d crawl through the horribly sealed 1950s windows that tried to kill me that one time. Jasper LOVED it. I’d be woken up at 3am by him howling at the ceiling.
Speaking of actual rodents though. I know that Rats and Mice exist in the city but honestly I’ve rarely SEEN any. Raccoons? Yup. I’m pretty sure that those huge bastards are EATING the rats because honestly. They’re huge. And badass. But I was walking home the other night, pretty late and I saw what I thought was a squirrel running across the street. Until I realized that it was not a squirrel. That it had a long skinny tail and was in fact the hugest rat I had ever seen. And I was in a residential neighbourhood. Not near restaurants or dumpsters that would feed that beast. It was kinda horrifying.
OMG THE RACCOON STORIES YOU GUYS!
They are horrible. LOL.
Also, you probably don’t have mice ever because Jasper.
I’ve never seen a rat in the city, but in New Orleans, I saw a giant cockroach – like a mammoth, this should be a rat size cockroach. It was disgusting.
Jasper and the fact that I live in a SOOPER clean building.
I had never seen a rat before either. Tiny mice, yeah sure. Heck I saw a mouse running between the tracks of the subway. No big deal. But this was a RAT. A huge effing rat. Running across the street like a creepy little jaywalker.
I’ve seen rat sized roaches in Florida. It was HORRIFYING.
Those southern roaches are disgusting. And rats are also disgusting – though I’ve never seen one that wasn’t a pet. I don’t think. Hmmm…
i’ve seen a mouse or two in my garage. We set out traps and such, because while I find them adorable as hell, and I don’t mind them outside the house, I don’t want them to make the leap from the garage into the house.
My scariest story of a furry animal is, one night, I went out to the garage to grab something from my car, it was summer, so I was wearing a cute little nighty, I was bare legged and barefoot. I go to the car, reach through the window, grab whatever it was that I wanted and turn around. Between me and the door to the house is, not one, but TWO raccoons. I swear they were eyeing my toes for tastiness. Something made a noise in the house, which scared them away from the door, but towards me. I shrieked and attempted to matrix climb up the cars in an effort to protect my delicious toes. My husband came out to the garage, laughed at me, and then got scared and ABANDONED me when they ran towards him.
I finally made it to the door, where I hit the automatic garage door opener, which scared them enough to run out the teeny tiny cat door that they came in through. I’m not quite sure how they fit through, considering these guys were 3 times the size of my dachshund, and she is too fat to make it through the cat door. The cat door is now completely shut with chicken wire.
That. Is. Horrifying. It also reminds me of a raccoon story that I really need to write about. Because raccoons are scarier than they’re given credit for.
I remember when we first moved into our apartment and had some mice. They ate through a bag of maltballs that we bought at Coney Island and I was so pissed! That day I sealed up every hole in the place with steel wool and duct tape. Have not seen a mouse since then.
You have to do this. Pull out the stove, fridge, and seal up every hole that a pipe or hose goes through. Under the sinks too. They will come back if you don’t.
That’s brilliant! I’m going to put Brian on that (if it’s not already done in the house, because we have yet to discover rodents or even that many bugs at all!)
One day this bad smell was coming from the hall and it got worse. We knew something had died, but where? We unscrewed the metal panel over our electric box thingy and there in this space beneath it was a nest of dead baby mice. So gross. We realized the electricians had left a whole on the outside under an eave and the mouse was probably climbing in and out through there. We sealed it up and haven’t had a problem since…I hope I didn’t just jinx myself!
Uggggghhhh! They like warm places. When I found a family of them in my car battery – it was because the battery had died…because they fried on it 🙁 Cyclical horror story.