From the Left



Mouse-demic response: Failure and success

Marc Munroe Dion on

As the government of an extremely small nation/house, our first mistake was ignoring the experts.

For days, our two cats, Maggie and Jack, had spent their evenings in the kitchen, staring fixedly at a cabinet.

"Maybe we have a mouse," my wife, Deborah, said.

We looked. No mouse droppings. Nothing had been nibbled.

"No mouse," I said.

In other words, our Mouse-demic Response Team tried to warn us, but we didn't listen. After all, they're just cats. We're in charge.


Deborah saw the mouse on a Wednesday. I was at work, doing three hours of talk radio. Deborah is a newspaper reporter, and she was working at home.

While there is no formal balance of power in our house, in a situation like this, the one furthest from home is considered to be the president, while the one on the scene is the governor. This holds true in hurricanes, when there's a burst pipe or when one of the cats is sick.

Deborah locked the cats in a bedroom, far from the mouse because, while she wanted the mouse gone, she did not want to watch the cats torture it to death. It was an act of compassion, and not entirely for the mouse's benefit.

She texted me just before I went on the air, and we continued to text on my breaks, maintaining an open and respectful channel of communication.


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