Saturday, February 7, 2009

Of Mice & Jesuits

I was doing a little reading of Augustine's Confessions today when, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a little black thing scurry underneath a sofa that a fellow Jesuit was sitting at.  I thought maybe that I was imagining things, so I didn't think anything of it--that is, until a few minutes later when I saw a furry little head pop out from underneath and start sniffing his shoe. 

At this point, I say: "Uhm, Jason, I think there's a mouse right under you."
He replies: "You're kidding, right?" 

He promptly stands up from the sofa and proceeds towards its back, where he gets on his knees in order to validate the existence of this unwanted visitor.  Seeing it, he says: "S***, you're right."

And thus began a fun-filled day of mice obsessions. Not exactly how I envisioned my day of rest and relaxation.  

Using newly gained philosophical powers, I asked myself: "From whence did this mouse come from? Is it mouse per se or mouse per accidens? How can they be so cute yet such disgusting creatures? What is their telos? Most importantly, how are we to get rid of this thing?" Turns out, we'd be seeing more than one.  

I thought about bringing in a crucifix, but my instincts told me that probably wouldn't work.  

While Jason went out to get mousetraps, he asked me and another Jesuit brother, John, to babysit the mouse, to make sure that it stayed underneath the sofa.  Our babysitting turned out to be all for naught, as it was able to evade our evil intentions, at least for the time being. For some reason, during that babysitting session, I couldn't help but think of a youtube video I had watched a while back.  

We were able to set the traps, but they didn't seem to be fooled so easily. Luckily, some Jesuit back-up came later in the day, and they would later make another makeshift trap, as we felt the two we had were insufficient.  It was quite an amazing sight to see this trap made of spare parts. It consisted in a small trash bucket filled with a little water with a ginger ale soda can lathered in organic peanut butter, which seemed to have been sitting in the fridge for one too many days, suspended on a single line of steel wiring. To boot, a makeshift ramp made of an old cardboard beer box and a small piece of wood was constructed to lead the mice to their dinner, and consequently to their end.   

Luckily, one of the store-bought traps caught one of them. We await, however, to see whether the time and effort of the makeshift trap was all in vain. 

How many Jesuits does it take to catch a mouse?


Marc said...

tooo many!

Ryan Rallanka, SJ said...

I agree!

Travel Monkey said...

"The best laid schemes o' Mice an' Men,
Gang aft agley"

Robert Burns "To a Mouse"


Kiwi Nomad 2008 said...

Someone told me to put peanut butter on the mousetrap and it worked. I hated doing such a thing. But maybe that would work for US mice just as well as it did for New Zealand mice.

Ryan Rallanka, SJ said...

I haven't seen the peanut butter in action, but people tell me that it works quite well here in the US

Barbara said...

Ever considered hiring a cat?

Ryan Rallanka, SJ said...

I think probably an exterminator will be hired instead

Jake Martin, SJ said...

Is the mouse situation taken care of yet? I have numerous bowls of cereal and open candy bars in my room that I really don't want to be nibbled on.