When I was visiting my mom a few years ago, I was in the basement using the treadmill and doing my daily workout. I got on the floor and started to do pushups. Since I have the upper body strength of a 4-year-old, I stopped after three and then tried to pull myself together to make myself do more. That’s when I noticed how my mom’s cats had taken over the joint. There were toys everywhere. My favorite was the cute mouse. It was a little lighter in color than I would picture a real mouse to be, and it had a little pink nose. It looked so life-like, but a cute version of the real devils (which is my pet name for mice).
Then, the cute toy mouse moved.
I screamed and jumped up very quickly. The mouse froze. We both stared at each other for a while; then, we both ran to separate corners of the room.
Since I really have an irrational fear of mice, I was not surprised by my reaction, but I was surprised to learn that my mom had a mouse in the house. And what is scarier? That I thought it was a toy.
I ran upstairs to tell my mom, which elicited a similar primal fear from her.
I took her cats and threw them in the basement. That’s what cats do, right? Catch mice?
My mom ended up getting an exterminator to come and check the house and teach us all a thing or two about rodent behavior. But, to this day, any time I see something move out of the corner of my eye (even a shadow), I get a bit nervous that it’s another mouse.
Laura Bedrossian is an Account Supervisor for Peppercomm, our strategic communications and marketing firm, in New York City.