Nothing really makes you question your life choices like waking up to the dulcet sounds of a mouse trapped in your bathtub.
How’s that for an attention grabber?
The time: 2:43 am.
Because I am a light sleeper (and because my upstairs neighbors own two of the yappiest hellbeast beagles known to mankind) I tend to sleep with either ear plugs, or with earbuds connected to my phone so I can fall asleep to my white noise app (Thunderstorm is my favorite. You care). Last night was a thunderstorm night but I only set the app to play for two hours or so which led me to pop awake at the aforementioned Godless hour to a weird scratching noise.
Being the paranoid sort, I have catalogued in my head all possible normal noises in my apartment. The radiator coming on, the dogs upstairs running around like assholes, someone walking up the back stairs, a tree branch smacking my window when its windy, etc. When I heard the scratching sound I immediately pegged it as Sound No. 343: blinds in bathroom window moving in the breeze. Awesome! Back to bed I go.
But then I remembered: I CLOSED THAT WINDOW.
Despite my penchant for melodrama, I quickly decided that I probably wasn’t about to be killed, and that I was most likely going to discover a new weird noise to add to the roster. I climbed out of bed and decided that the noise was definitely coming from the bathroom so, I flipped on the light, looked around and then…
…well I’m not sure of the EXACT details but within seconds I was back in my bed screaming into my pillow (which I think triggered a barking fit from the upstairs dogs but what the fuck do I care about their owners getting sleep), which I then followed by furiously Googling “mouse in bathtub” (seriously), praying, wondering what time the building maintenance guy started work, getting up to peek and see if it was still there (it was), Googling “does bleach kill mice” (apparently it does, but it also kinda makes you an asshole. #KanyeShrug), formulating a plan involving hot water, a bucket…
Eventually, this nightmare came to an end (spoiler alert: we both lived and I’m going to Home Depot after work) and as I crawled into bed I tried to distract myself with pleasant thoughts so I could drift back to sleep. I had the normal woe is me moment: ff I was single, I wouldn’t have had to deal with that and so forth. Then I beat myself up about being such a punk and tried to psych myself up about how I’m BIGGER than the mouse therefore I win. (None of that worked, btw) Eventually I had a dream/hallucination that I had crawled back in to bed with..someone…and told them all about it. I woke up from this and thought…hey wait a goddamn minute. If I get out of bed to deal with a mouse while the man in it sleeps? THERE WILL BE DRAWBACKS AND REPERCUSSIONS.
And then I wondered (cause I damn sure wasn’t sleeping): is that fair?
Look, I’m an independent sort of gal. I work. I live alone. I pay my bills. I take out the garbage. I take care of minor home things like a big girl (like buying mouse traps and disposing of dead rodent bodies…except that one time I had such a breakdown that my neighbor from a few blocks away had to come over and rescue me). Just yesterday I Googled what was wrong with my toilet (is it starting to sound like I live in a tenement to anyone else?) so I could tell my landlord exactly what needs to be fixed…in a email that will surely be ignored but hey, at least I know what a flush valve flapper is now. But I’m not exceedingly handy. I don’t like to touch gross things. I’m terrified of spiders and those centipede things and basically anything living in my house that doesn’t pay rent. According to our traditional gender roles thats ok. I cook and clean and have a maternal instinct so those are the traits I bring to the table.
But what if my eventual beloved likes to cook and clean and changes a diaper in record time? What if we both end up screaming into our pillows at the mouse in the bathtub?
Just to put myself to the test I imagined relaying this scenario to
this total studmuffin a guy I know. He reads as a traditional masculine meathead type. He’s adorable. I may have a crush based on him based solely on the fact that I think he could bench press me. Okay not a crush. I’d have the sex with him. Whatever.
ANYWAYS I tried to imagine him reacting…well…like me, to what happened.
Lady Boner: deflated.
Does that make me a jerk? Am I the type of woman who only rejects gender roles when they restrict me but not when they benefit me?
I don’t have any answers to these questions. All I know is that right now? I’ve got a ten course meal
and a open mouth waiting for the person who captures that mouse for me.