'Tis the season for mice to turn up in your house, like those unwanted holiday guests who outstay their welcome. Apparently in some parts of the country (hello, East Coast), it's been so rainy that the critters are being driven out of their soggy little holes in the ground and coming into our nice, dry homes in greater numbers than usual this year.
A few of my poor friends at work have had to deal with this phenomenon firsthand, with one colleague having an army of mice move in until she could get an outside exterminator to plug up all the holes in the walls in her apartment in New York.
It reminds me of the time I suddenly found myself face to face with my own mouse intruder in my own Manhattan apartment. I'd like to think I came up with a pretty creative -- and obvious -- way to scare the little guy off.
It's simple, really. I lectured him. Well, first I screamed, like any self-respecting girly-girl would do. And then I lectured him (or maybe it was a her? I doubt it, though). Anyway, he was sitting there, frozen under a dining table chair, and I bent down so that my huge human face was close to his tiny furry rodent one.
"What do you think you're doing here? You don't belong here!" I told him sternly as he stared at me with frightened black eyes, his whiskers twitching faintly. "You need to get out right now and never come back!"
I'm embarrassed to say it, but I think I even wagged a finger at him.
The thing is, though, it worked like a charm. After staring and twitching for a good minute longer, the mouse turned around and scampered under a counter. I never saw him again, and I never got a surprise visit from any of his relatives, either.
But it's not all that shocking when you think about it. I mean, the same tactic -- lecturing, finger-wagging, voice-raising -- is also the perfect way to chase a man away. Or at least stun him into silence for a while until he retreats, tail between his legs. So why wouldn't it work on mice too?
All I'm suggesting is this: If one day you find yourself with a mouse problem, forget the traps and the exterminator. Don't bother going out and getting a cat. All you need to do is lecture the little beast for a while until you've made your point and he scurries off. I doubt he'll ever be back. Would you want to be the brunt of a lecture like that twice in a row? Didn't think so. And if you're trying to get rid of a guy -- or at least make him back down during a heated discussion? Do the exact same thing. I'm telling you, it's pure magic.
What do you do to get rid of pesky mice ... and men?
Image via Brian_Kellet/Flickr