Man, I bet you wish you'd never picked up the phone today, don't you? Such an innocent sounding ring, and on the other side of it your sometimes reasonable daughter in head spinning, bile spewing mode. I'm sorry. I truly am. I know I was supposed to phone you today - so I did. You're usually on to my dodging and hiding out routine, so I knew I was toast if I didn't call like planned. I had all the best intentions of keeping it together and not dragging you into my soap opera. Obviously, my plans fell through.
I totally blame it on the mouse.
It wasn't just the fact that my household is imploding in around me.
Or that my two days "off" have been a bill paying, chore doing, kid driving, teenaged feuding joke with me bleeding money from every pore.
Or even that in the two days "off" I've been to work three times - once for a committee meeting, and twice for doctor's appointments (once for Surfer Dude's cast and once for my -whoopee - annual exam).
It wasn't the almost seventy pounds of apples going south on my kitchen table because I don't have the time to do anything with them.
Or the pile of clean laundry completely covering my dining room table just begging to be folded and put away.
Or the fact that the guy I bought a bunch of firewood from vanished into thin air.
Or the bill from our "marriage counselor" demanding back payment from frickin' March. No note of explanation, no nothing. When I called him - incensed - he blamed the insurance company for being so slow with their co-pays and then asked me how the FX and I were doing. I'll spare you the rest of that conversation, but suffice it to say I'll get a big laugh out of it eventually. 2016 sounds good.
No. It was definitely the mouse.
A few nights ago, Gumby came into my room to tell me that he had mice crawling up his television cord. Being half asleep at the time, I hoped I had misunderstood. I hadn't. I've had two boys in my bed ever since. I went into his room to take a look around and didn't see any mice. I did, however, see the rodent equivalent of an all-you-can-eat Chinese buffet on his floor. Dirty plates and cups (strictly forbidden) on his bedside table. A pizza box from the night of my Bunco - almost a month ago. Rat food - from his pet rat - spilled all over his dresser. It was the mouse version of Disneyland.
This was problematic enough on its own, but since you're coming Saturday for a visit, it created difficulties. You usually sleep with me. This would be difficult with the two boys and three dogs already edging me out. The mice had to go. (They had been forced out months ago, but clearly have found their way back).
I was standing in my laundry room looking for traps when a mouse ran across my foot in a panic. It wasn't the only one. I was hopping and screaming and flinging things through the air. I'd like to say I accidentally squashed the mouse with all my jumping around, but the only thing I did was smash my toes into the dryer.
Since I've "talked" to you, I've cleaned out Gumby's room and found enough mouse poop to launch a shuttle. I've laid traps all through my laundry room. And as I'm writing this, I've just watched a mouse creep out from under my stove and head toward the island before darting back to safety. None of the dogs even woke up. If I didn't know what my dogs might do to a cat, I'd have one in the house by the weekend. I can't do this all winter.
I know you were really frustrated that you couldn't do anything concrete to help until you get here. But do you remember when you volunteered to sit in my living room with a BB gun and shoot mice? You don't happen to have one, do you? Or a cat I could borrow?
your frazzled daughter
p.s. Can't wait to see you Saturday. Hopefully after today, you feel the same.