Amy Tries Again

Of Mice And Me – Part One
May 27, 2011, 4:52 PM
Filed under: Miscellanea

I currently have – okay, WE currently have – okay, okay, ASH currently has – a delightful pet named The Velvet Underground (Ash named him).  As we are very good tenants, The Velvet Underground is not a dog or pig or rhinoceros, but a Siamese Fighting Fish (aka a Beta).  He is an excellent fish, and ticks a surprising number of pet boxes.  We fuss over him and are concerned about things like enriching his environment and supplementing his diet.  He’s a friendly fellow, but of late he’s been doing his puffy fan dances an awful lot and building and guarding bubble nests with constant vigilance.  A concerned parent, I looked these behaviours up online.  It seems T-Vug (that’s what we call him for short) longs for love.  His actions are those of a young gentleman fish wishing to win the favours of a sweet-finned miss.

Note his shot glass cave. He is a badass inner city fish. Also, I spent all my cave money buying him a selection of decorative silk plants.

I feel quite sorry for him.  I wish I could provide him with a lady caller, but I dare not.  You see, this has all happened before.  Only with rodents.

Once upon a time, I was a bright-eyed lass of 20.  My first attempt at sharehousing had collapsed on itself after a year or so, so I’d skulked grumpily back into the family home.  I was not happy.  My sister had taken my room (fair enough – it had a super awesome trapdoor leading to a second room downstairs) and wouldn’t give it back.  My mother wanted me to knock on her door when I came home at night so she would know I wasn’t dead.  I had to stack the dishwasher.  Hellish.

I attempted to content myself with my one remaining relic of grownup life.  I’d gotten myself a fish named Horace while I’d been away.  I had not been kind to Horace.  I did not change his water very often, and, on one occasion when I did remember to, I managed to send him down the drain.  I felt incredibly guilty, so I ripped out the pipes under the sink and rescued him.  I was delighted.  My housemates were not, and neither was the landlord.  Anyway, this adventure had terrified Horace into near-immortality, and he survived my abuse for long enough to make the journey back to my mother’s house.  Alas, a few weeks later he was raptured up to fishy heaven, and I had another burst of guilt over the way I’d treated my dear pet.

You would think at this point that I would spend some time with the two dogs and a cat my family had at the time.  After all, their absence (or rather mine) had driven me to get a substitute pet in the first place.  No.  They simply wouldn’t do.  There was only one thing for it.  I decided to buy a mouse.  I didn’t tell my mother.

Sylvanian Families, you have A LOT to answer for.

My new pet’s name was Lenny.  He was a sweet creature, dark brown with fluffy ears, and had the distinct advantage over the late Horace of being able to be removed from his home.  I had a wonderful time for about a week taking the mouse places with me.  Then I got bored.  Stupid Lenny needed his cage cleaned all the time.  He attempted escape.  He didn’t do any tricks.  I grew to resent Lenny, but my guilt over Horace meant that at least I grudgingly took a decent amount of care of him.

I did try to re-ignite our relationship.  I bought him a wheel to run in.  He didn’t like it.  I bought him a ball to run around the floor in.  It frightened him.  Whatever, Lenny.  An idea occurred to me.  Maybe I just had a dud mouse.  Maybe I needed a better mouse.  Maybe the influence of a more exciting mouse would enliven Lenny.  Maybe they could have MOUSE BABIES!

I told Mum I was getting another mouse (having already gotten another mouse) and, in due course, introduced her to Boris, a white mouse with black eyes that glinted red in the light all creepy-like.  I didn’t mention the fact that Boris was really named Petal and that I was about to embark upon an exciting career as a mouse breeder.

Petal was everything Lenny wasn’t.  She was inquisitive and playful (well, for a mouse) and loved the wheel and ball.  I was very pleased.  Nothing happened on the MOUSE BABIES front, and after a few weeks I started to think it wasn’t to be.  This didn’t matter.  Finally, I had a mouse I could love!  Petal was excellent.  Petal was the future.  Petal was…getting kind of fat.

You're not off the hook either, Beatrix Potter.

I know, Mum.  What a terrible mistake.  They must be a pretty shoddy pet shop.  No, I’m not going to call them.  What’s the point?  What’s done is done.  I’ve just got to make the best of the situation.  Poor Boris – oh, hang on.  She’ll need another name now.  What about…Petal?

I woke up one morning to find Petal (in a cage on her own so her beloved husband wouldn’t be tempted to get all baby-eaty) had been delivered of several writhing pink jellybeans.  Hah!  I could MAKE MICE!  My interest in my rodent friends well and truly restored, I fussed over the new mother and her nursery.  I informed Lenny of his fatherhood and honestly believed for a second that he’d reacted to the news with great joy.  All was domestic bliss.

It was then, gentle reader, that disaster struck.  To come in part two: tragedy, paraplegia and Fergus the Nimbin mouse.  To be continued…


4 Comments so far
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I think I remember Horace!! And hurry up with the second part – I’m dieing to know what happend next!!! 😀

Comment by Hania

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