Monday, October 18, 2004

The Mouse Incident

I recently reconnected with an old friend named Craig. This is my favorite story about him:

When we were 18, Craig and I were co-counselors for a cabin full of nine-year-olds at a summer camp in the Santa Monica mountains. Everyday after lunch, the campers and counselors would retreat to the cabins for an hour of quiet time. Craig and I would try to sleep after a late night of sneaking over to the girl counselors’ cabins to try to get some nookie, but we would invariably spend the whole hour admonishing the yappy kids to shut up.

One day during quiet time, a ruckus broke out. The boys started squealing and screaming and running around like banshees. I popped up from my bunk ready to do some ass-chewing.

“What’s going on in here?” I grumbled.

In unison, the boys pointed to the back corner of the cabin and squealed, “A mouse! A mouse! There’s a mouse in the cabin!”

I borrowed a flashlight from one of the boys, knelt down and shined the light under a steel bunk-bed in the back of the room. Sure enough, there was a dark gray mouse huddling in the corner of the cabin, shivering with fear and cocking its head back and forth.

The boys were in complete spaz mode. Their shrill screams could no doubt be heard in other nearby cabins and it must have sounded like an axe murder was occurring under our watch. I knew the only way to quiet the kids was to get the mouse out of our cabin, pronto.

I went back to the front of the cabin and huddled with Craig. We decided to use what we called The Hockey Method to rid the critter from our domain: I would get down and prod the mouse with a broom and, once he was in position, sweep him toward Craig, who would be standing near the door. Craig would then use a second broom to the sweep the little bastard out the door and back into nature. “He shoots, he scores!”

An important side note here: Craig is six-foot-nine and about 230 pounds of beefy bigness. And he was barefoot.

We stationed the boys on their beds and I got down on my knees to set the plan into action. Miraculously, my first poke at the mouse did the trick. The rodent felt the tickle of my broom and took off – zzzzzzip – right past me, and right toward Craig.

Craig had knelt down to watch me work on the mouse and was completely shocked when the varmint came bolting out of the corner and right at him. Craig was spooked, and in a purely reflexive action, he got to his feet and jumped to get out of the mouse’s way. Unfortunately for the mouse, Craig timed his jump poorly.

Craig’s heel landed right on top of the mouse.

And he was barefoot.

The mouse didn’t know what hit it. Its body popped under Craig’s weight and made a sound that I have never forgotten. It was like a great, big, fat person sitting on a whoopee cushion filled with ketchup. Blood and guts squirted out everywhere.

Craig ran screaming from the cabin and began to drag his bare foot across the dirt, trying relentlessly to scrape the mouse’s squished intestines and brain matter from his naked size 14 sole. He yelped so loudly and so long – “Oh my god! It’s on me! Get it off! Oh my god!” – that the entire camp came bolting out of its respective cabins to see what had happened. The boys doubled over, cracking up with a mixture of horror and delight. And I laughed until winter.

It was, and still is, the funniest thing I have ever seen.


At 4:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


omigosh, I can actually FEEL that mouse crunching. Aaagh!


At 4:58 PM, Blogger chiacchiere said...

Hilarious. I'm assuming that didn't help Craig out on his quest for nookie?

At 5:59 AM, Blogger none said...

Ewwwwwwwww. :)


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