Sunday, May 15, 2005

Purple Mice

A couple weeks ago I almost stepped on a mouse on the way to work. A baby mouse - and I mean so baby it hadn't even opened it's eyes yet, I'm sure. I was lucky I happened to be looking down, I let out a shreik and double stepped out of the way to avoid stepping on it. It was lying on the steep paved hill to my apartment which is, essentially, a driveway. Perfect place for mouse squishing, if not by foot, then by car.

So I picked the little thing up in a handkerchief I had in my bag, and carried it away. I was walking to school wondering what I would do with the little thing. I couldn't bring it back to my apartment. I knew it would make a really fun toy/meal for Kamikaze (my giant black sumo-cat I rescued from Japan) but I couldn't bear the thought of having mouse bits scattered all over the place. Or worse, scooping mice bones and fur out of the litter box. Gross. Yah, I know.

So I was thinking maybe I could convince one of my students who had had a hamster to take it home and raise it (as a hamster?) in their now defunct hamster things. I thought it was more probable, though, that the kid would promise me they were taking it home, only to take it out back and devise a contest with his classmates as to who could make the baby mouse the most flat in one stomp. My students are a little like that.

So while thinking about all this and looking down at the sleepy baby mouse I looked up long enough to see a cat looking at me in a vacant overgrown lot. I spied the cat and the cat spied me and then I spied another cat spying me too. I've seen these Harold and Maude cats in the neighbourhood before, wild, and far too skittish to approach anyone - even a kind foreigner bent down with food "here kitty *kiss kiss* kitty" like.

So I showed the cats the mouse, and I left it on a rock in the sun on the edge of the lot. I love animals, but I'm hip to the food chain, too. I don't know if the kitties got it, but I'm going to assume so. Baby Mouse was not there when I passed by on my way home. Poor mouse. Quite like the rest of us, eh? Plucked from one disaster just to be dropped into another.
Damn. That sounds so pessimistic.

I do know that on the very same driveway I found Baby Mouse, I daily pass over a sewer grate where I see little purple flowers growing. I relate to them. Pretty and light seeking, they grow up and out - only to get regularily smashed down by tire treads. SUCKERS!!!! I'm sure it's just because I'm headed to work when I see them,...why I feel so bad for them. Otherwise I'd just look down and think "oooooh - purple (duh) pretty!!!"

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