What! A mouse! Jumps on ottoman.
I am not a morning person, so imagine my delight as I noticed a small dark shape run across my kitchen floor only to disappear behind the couch first thing Monday morning. This is not how I like my Adrenalin served. Admittedly it might not have been a mouse. I’d only caught a glimpse of movement in my peripheral vision, but I really wasn’t keen on validating that first impression with another sighting.
No problem is so big or so complicated that it can’t be run away from!
– Charles M. Schulz
Lamont assured me that he would take care of the problem as soon as the boys were safely at school. I went to work and attempted to settle my nerves, however, all I could think of was the witch from Hazel and Gretel. “Nibble, nibble, little mouths. Who is eating my house?” Yes, I would be the witch in this example. And sure, one could argue that she was asking for it when she made a whole house out of gingerbread and candy, but let’s not get side-tracked blaming the victim.
When Lamont arrived home, he brought a highly recommended trap, which he placed near where I thought I saw our little uninvited guest. A day passed. Then another. There has been no sign that the trap has been disturbed in any way.
Now the paranoia is starting to set in. Each thump, bump, creak, or tap of the house settling is making my heart race. What was that?! Oh, just the neighbor kids playing kickball nextdoor. I hadn’t enjoyed my coffee yet that morning. Now I am starting to question myself. It was a Monday. Had I really seen anything at all? Or is the creature simply mocking me?
The whole incident has reminded me of a story I read a few years back about a rodent infestation on a massive scale. An estimated two billion rats were displaced as land was developed. Considering there has been only one unverified sighting in my house and I am freaking out, it is hard for me to imagine how someone could even start managing that kind of issue. I would likely be frozen in some combination of disgust and terror. So what did they do? Go with the knee-jerk reaction? Call in the national guard? Torch the countryside? Poison every potential food / water source? No – someone got creative.
Problems are only opportunities with thorns on them.
– Hugh Miller
The powers that be created a contest for the best recipe featuring, yep, you guessed it, rat. Some of the recipes proved to be quite popular, and soon area restaurants couldn’t pay the locals enough for the rats to keep up with market demand. In addition to eliminating the rat problem, the locals were paid handsomely and stomachs were filled. It was a surprisingly organic and elegant solution for what appeared to be an overwhelming problem.
It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.
– Douglas Adams
However, I have no intention of trying out one of those recipes any time soon. Just because their solution worked for them, doesn’t mean it will work for me. The point is that by thinking creatively and trying something new, they were able to come up with a solution that not only solved their immediate problem, they were able to address two other issues that on the surface were unrelated.
Progress is obtained only by exploiting opportunities, not by solving problems. When you solve problems, all you do is guarantee a return to normalcy.
– Peter F. Drucker
The trap remains baited, but now I am seriously considering caving into Kiddo’s demand and bringing home a terrier, or at least borrowing the neighbors. I hear pets are good for reducing stress. In any event, I am open to any creative solutions (minus recipes).