Of Mice and Men

‘Karen, don’t move.’

If ever there are words that I do not want to hear at 1am, those rank near the top.

I scream-whisper, so as not to wake Bee, who has climbed in to bed between us at some point. “What is it? What is it?” I mentally scan the room to locate the phone and plan our escape route, which I’m sure we’re gonna need, since I’m sure that we are in the throes of a home invasion or zombies or something rational like that.

‘I think Miko left us another treat.’

Oh, that. My panic sinks, but my stomach rises to my throat. Nooooo, I whine silently, noooo, I don’t want to deal with that. Not now. Groooooooossss.

My eyes zero in on the object on the bed. Wow, it looks bigger than the last one, and holy crap, its tail is sticking straight up. Miko must have struck quickly. My pride in my normally lazy cat’s accomplishment is short-lived, when I realize that, once again, Chris’ involvement is going to go only as far as alerting me to the issue, and perhaps, jumping onto a chair and covering his eyes.

Fuck, fuck, fuck. ‘I’m going to turn on the lights,’ says Chris from his perch, on the other side of the room. ‘No! – you’ll wake Bee.’ Oh yes, Bee, our daughter, nestled cozily, bum up, inches from a large (at least in this light) dead creature that the cat sacrificed. For our love. Sweet, actually, and we really should go praise her since she did this for us and –

Bee shifts and I snap out of my stupor.

‘Chris! Help me!’

‘No way – this is your gig,’ Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. Again, I wonder how I got stuck with giving birth and disposing of dead critters. But there is no way that I can manage hauling the big winter duvet downstairs all by myself without, uh, disturbing, the dead thing.

‘Help me!’ I am practically hissing. Chris moves slightly forward as I formulate a plan.

‘Ok, ok, lets fold this side over, ok yep, now lay it down gently…’ We are half expecting the thing to spring back to life as we lower the top third of the quilt over it. Next, we fold the bottom third over the top third, and then work our way in, Chris from the left, me from the right in the same manner, until we have a neat square padded coffin for the beast confined within. Good! We each take a side and begin our journey down the stairs with our package. I am praying that we have the whole mouse in the quilt and will not find any little gifts along the way (I found a headless mouse on the porch last autumn, compliments of a neighbourhood tom, and headless mice, mocking me, have haunted my dreams ever since). We put the death chamber down in the kitchen and ponder the next move.

‘Let’s just put it in the backyard and forget about the whole thing.’ (My suggestion.)
‘Gross, no, let’s put it across the road by the parking lot where we put the other ones.’ (Chris.)
‘Let’s just throw it out and buy a new duvet next year and go back to sleep. (Me.)
‘No! Let’s take it across the road.’ (Chris.)
‘Fine, but I’m just going to leave it by the butterfly garden. It’s March break. There’s no kids, and by time they come back, some other animal will have picked it up. (Me.)
‘Or your daughter will have picked it up. Since she plays there every day.’ (Chris.)
‘Fine. But you have to help me.’

And so we head outside and across the road to the gully between the fence and the parking lot of the school, where no child ever roams. What a sight. I pray that none of my neighbours have insomnia and are looking out the window at this moment, because we look like we are dumping a body. Which, I realize, is accurate. Oh god.

We make it across the road and lay the blanket down. Gingerly, still expecting to see an angry mouse leap out at us from beneath the layers, we start to unfold the blanket.

‘Slowly,’ I coach, ‘Let’s not let it roll out, because I’m not touching it. Slowly!’

We undo the first three folds and take a breath, readying ourselves for the reveal.

We peel back the last layer, and take our first good look at the beast.

I turn abruptly and head to the house. ‘You know I’m blogging this, right?’

Chris nods. My hero.



  1. Thanks for the morning laugh! I am mouse ger idder of extraordinaire. Call me next time....

  2. I meant mouse get ridder...not ger idder.

  3. That is f*cking PRICELESS!

  4. I can only imagine how confused the octopus was during all this.

  5. Hilarious.

    Would he trade a BJ for mouse duty?

  6. That story was hilarious! Thank god you didn't throw away your duvet!

  7. Nice! The Ikea pentapus! We are big fans and they do have one leg that sticks up at an odd angle.


    Our cat is an excellent mouser and we have come downstairs some mornings to virtual bloodbaths in our hallway. Thank goodness it's a tile floor.

  8. So funny!

    My silky terrier left a little vole on my pillow once. She had thoughtfully sucked out all the insides though, so it was just the empty shell of a little hairy, nasty vole.

    I gave my ex-husband that dog in the divorce.

  9. christy - very very good point.

    sage - pentapus? awesome! we had yet to come up with a good name for it. we just chalked the 5 legs up to swedish efficiency.

    canape - a vole? but they're so cute!

  10. too too funny!! I can just imagine some neighbour looking out their window at you guys.

  11. Your cat really showed that pentapus who's boss. Damn five-legged octopi...

  12. What a great story. Very suspenseful. I'm glad no cats or mice were harmed in the making of this story :-)

  13. Eek a pentapus! Aahhhhhhhhhhhh...


  14. that is hilarious. oh my god.

    but how long did it take you to fall back to sleep...my god.


  15. Pentapus??? Oh my god! I thought it was some sort of sex toy.

  16. Too funny! LOL! I had a cat that used to leave me presents too.

  17. LOL! That was a great story! I can't imagine how long it took you to fall back asleep after all of that.

    Our cats leave us presents on the bed, but it's usually vomit. Although they are also expert spider hunters, but they leave spider bodies at the foot of the stairs instead.

  18. Chris wouldn't last long around these parts. My cat is an expert gift giver and she loves me so.

    And we have large windows in our home and a deck railing made with glass. And we live out in the bush.

    Dead birds on the deck are a daily find. Which my loving dog brings into the house and deposits on my pillow for me.

    Let's just say, my children are pros at body removal.

    Pentapus....my cheeks hurt from smiling so much...

  19. I have such a cute picture of you two tip toeing about in flannels through out that frenzied little scene. I called it, Nocturnal Bliss: A Domestic Duet, Part Deux! I love the surprise ending!
    Love Ya!

  20. red - i don't even want to tell you where chris grew up; you'd hang your head in shame.

    lisa - yes! we were in flannels! i am in flannels from october - april. sexy, no?

    vive le pentapus!

  21. When our cats leave us little presents, it's vomit.

  22. Oh my God, great GREAT post. I'm still laughing. I just returned to work last week and the staff there has adopted this pentapus as our mascot. I won't be able to look at it the same again.

    So funny!

  23. LMAO!! Oh, that would have given me a heart attack...how funny

  24. I’m surprised that Jana isn’t on her way to Ikea to pick up a Pentapus. She’s all into those little stuffed guys. Great story but I know I would be the one to deal with any “gifts” like that if our cat had a clue that he’s supposed to chase mice.


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