Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. The Death of a Mouse in Five Acts

 

Act 1: In Which Our Hero Makes His Appearance. A few days ago, Marie and I were grocery shopping in Safeway when we saw a stuffed mouse, all dressed up for Christmas, incongruously standing behind the bananas in the produce department. The thing was tall (standing on the floor, it came up to my kneecap) and it was a steal for $9.74.

As you see in the photo, this was a fine, jaunty mouse, looking more like Topo Gigio than Mickey the Mouse. He had little reindeer woven into its winter coat, which was trimmed in fur. A pair of gloves, a scarf, and a perky Santa hat completed his ensemble. Though the mouse probably originated in the mind of a Chinese entrepreneur and then sewn together by the dexterous hands of Chinese maidens, the little rodent looked like something that might have come straight out of a quaint little shop in Santa Claus, Indiana. Those Chinese know us.

Act II: In Which the Villain Arrives on the Scene. Bob the dog thinks that anything that comes into the house that looks like a dog toy is his. So he sat under it for hours, looking up and whimpering for us to take it down and give it to him.

We knew that if we let him have the mouse, Bob would destroy it within minutes. This was our Christmas decoration. So we resisted. But after hours of listening to Bob’s pathetic moaning, we couldn’t take it any longer, so we drove back to Safeway and bought another mouse, this one just for Bob.

(You probably also think we’re pampering our dog, that we’re canine enablers! But that couldn’t possibly be true. You see, there is a precise correlation between owners who spoil their dogs and owners who give their dogs cutesy nicknames. We would never do that. We don’t even call Bob our fur baby — though we’re sorely tempted.)

Act III: In Which Bob’s Normally Suppressed Canine Instincts Come Alive. When we got home with the mouse, Bob jumped up and down, pawed the rug, and circled three times in a frenzy. We asked forgiveness of the mouse and then threw him into the den with the Bobster.

Bob pounced on that mouse like a lion on a gazelle. Within minutes, the mouse was on his back being eviscerated. The poor thing still has a smile on his face. Those Chinese seamstresses would have cried if they could see what you see below.

After an hour or so, here’s Mr. Bob with the scattered remains of the mouse’s cotton entrails. Bob seems to have a “Did I do OK?” look on his face.

Act IV: Mouse Resurrection. To the righthere’s what the poor mouse looked like after we had stuffed most of his innards back in. Parts of him have gone missing. He is now sans eyes, sans ears, and sans arms. His tail has been dismembered.

Marie will gather up the parts and resurrect the mouse by sewing the poor thing together. His resurrected form, seen to the left, however, is missing his eyes, one arm, one leg, one ear, half his suit, and a tail. We don’t know where those parts went to. Marie probably thought it futile to sew the tail back on.

Mr. Bob will play with the mouse for a while, listlessly tearing off an appendage every now and then (which Marie dutifully sews back on), but the thrill is largely gone. The mouse will slowly sink down to the bottom of the toy box and spend his remaining days a pathetic and forgotten thing.

Act V: Denouement. Before the mouse came into the house, Bob had destroyed toys galore. We thought we had learned our lesson — no more dog toys unless they’re made of indestructible rubber. But the Bobber made such a pathetic picture as he sat there longing for the mouse that we folded like a cheap lawn chair. We’ll probably fold again in the future. We’re eminently foldable when it comes to the Bobster.

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  1. The Reticulator Member

    One: Is that any way to raise a dog to be a vegetarian?

    Two: Why is Mona Lisa sideways? 

    • #1
    • December 1, 2020, at 7:15 AM PST
    • 9 likes
  2. Misthiocracy got drunk and Member
    Misthiocracy got drunk andJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    My cat would kill the “mouse” and leave it intact on the floor as proof of her superior murdering skills, but she wouldn’t destroy the “mouse” because destruction doesn’t prove anything.

    • #2
    • December 1, 2020, at 7:22 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  3. JoelB Member

    Misthiocracy got drunk and (View Comment):

    My cat would kill the “mouse” and leave it intact on the floor as proof of her superior murdering skills, but she wouldn’t destroy the “mouse” because destruction doesn’t prove anything.

    With cats, destruction only applies to furniture.

    • #3
    • December 1, 2020, at 7:31 AM PST
    • 8 likes
  4. colleenb Member
    colleenbJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Great post. Just promise you will never put a “dog parent’ or “dog grandparent” sticker on your car. I mean Bob is obviously a fine canine but …….

    • #4
    • December 1, 2020, at 7:32 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  5. KentForrester Moderator
    KentForrester

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    One: Is that any way to raise a dog to be a vegetarian?

    Two: Why is Mona Lisa sideways?

    Retic, displaying an copy of an iconic painting like the Mona Lisa in your living room is corny. I turned corny into ironic by placing it sideways. Call me sophisticated.

    I made all that up. The box that I glued da Vinci’s painting onto is oriented horizontally. So I glued the copy of the painting onto the horizontal box. Hence, sideways Mona Lisa.

    In fact, Bob eats a lot of green beans and carrots. I’m not sure if he likes their taste, but he does enjoy their crunchiness. 

    • #5
    • December 1, 2020, at 7:32 AM PST
    • 8 likes
  6. KentForrester Moderator
    KentForrester

    colleenb (View Comment):

    Great post. Just promise you will never put a “dog parent’ or “dog grandparent” sticker on your car. I mean Bob is obviously a fine canine but …….

    We have a little photo of Bob on the back of our Prius. Have we gone too far?

    • #6
    • December 1, 2020, at 7:38 AM PST
    • 11 likes
  7. Misthiocracy got drunk and Member
    Misthiocracy got drunk andJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    KentForrester (View Comment):
    Call me sophisticated.

    No.

    :-)

    • #7
    • December 1, 2020, at 7:40 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  8. Gossamer Cat Coolidge

    At one point they made stuffed dog toys without the stuffing. Good for playing fetch and for tugs of war, but with our dog at the time, the thrill was gone.

    • #8
    • December 1, 2020, at 7:41 AM PST
    • 4 likes
  9. Susan Quinn Contributor

    You and Marie are so cruel, I say, Cruel!!! I must be cruel, too, since I laughed all the way through. Thanks, Kent, for the giggle.

    • #9
    • December 1, 2020, at 7:42 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  10. colleenb Member
    colleenbJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    KentForrester (View Comment):

    colleenb (View Comment):

    Great post. Just promise you will never put a “dog parent’ or “dog grandparent” sticker on your car. I mean Bob is obviously a fine canine but …….

    We have a little photo of Bob on the back of our Prius. Have we gone too far?

    Sigh. Close but I think it’s ok. I mean you are in Oregon so that means it’s pretty easy to not be the craziest person on the block.

    • #10
    • December 1, 2020, at 7:43 AM PST
    • 9 likes
  11. Misthiocracy got drunk and Member
    Misthiocracy got drunk andJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Gossamer Cat (View Comment):

    At one point they made stuffed dog toys without the stuffing. Good for playing fetch and for tugs of war, but with our dog at the time, the thrill was gone.

    I was at the Dollarama yesterday and saw that they’re selling dog toys shaped like slippers. 

    I LOLed.

    • #11
    • December 1, 2020, at 7:47 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  12. Doug Watt Moderator

    KentForrester (View Comment):

    colleenb (View Comment):

    Great post. Just promise you will never put a “dog parent’ or “dog grandparent” sticker on your car. I mean Bob is obviously a fine canine but …….

    We have a little photo of Bob on the back of our Prius. Have we gone too far?

    The photo is fine, the Prius is a different matter.

    • #12
    • December 1, 2020, at 8:06 AM PST
    • 11 likes
  13. Tex929rr Coolidge

    Haha. I knew this would involve Bob. So Lola and Scotch have at least a dozen stuffed toys with varying degrees of squeakiness (Scotch is mostly indifferent to them). Mrs Tex is a dedicated Christmas decorator and this year the minute Lola saw this little white bear she grabbed it from whatever display it was part of. For a few days now the Mrs moves it and Lola tracks it down. No destruction yet, just proudly carrying it around. We had company over last night and she didn’t know what to do with the bear while she welcomed our neighbors. This is her giving me the side eye while she decides her next move.

    • #13
    • December 1, 2020, at 8:36 AM PST
    • 10 likes
  14. Arahant Member

    JoelB (View Comment):
    With cats, destruction only applies to furniture.

    Trees. They call them trees. They are made of wood. They are territory to be marked.

    • #14
    • December 1, 2020, at 8:49 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  15. colleenb Member
    colleenbJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Doug Watt (View Comment):

    KentForrester (View Comment):

    colleenb (View Comment):

    Great post. Just promise you will never put a “dog parent’ or “dog grandparent” sticker on your car. I mean Bob is obviously a fine canine but …….

    We have a little photo of Bob on the back of our Prius. Have we gone too far?

    The photo is fine, the Prius is a different matter.

    C’mon man. He is in Oregon.

    • #15
    • December 1, 2020, at 9:18 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  16. Stad Coolidge

    The Reticulator (View Comment):
    Two: Why is Mona Lisa sideways? 

    Sleeping . . .

    • #16
    • December 1, 2020, at 9:49 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  17. Stad Coolidge

    KentForrester (View Comment):
    We have a little photo of Bob on the back of our Prius. Have we gone too far?

    About the dog picture or driving a Prius?

    • #17
    • December 1, 2020, at 9:49 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  18. KentForrester Moderator
    KentForrester

    Hah to you anti-Prius folk. Our Prius is 16-years-old and has 216,000 miles on it with no major repairs. (Some Priuses have gone over 600,000 miles.). Still on its original big battery (the one that combines with the internal combustion engine to propel the car). Still on its original brake pads. Only one new set of tires in 216,000 miles.

    You’ll lose a tablespoon or so of testosterone by buying a Prius, but it will be worth it. 

     

     

    • #18
    • December 1, 2020, at 10:05 AM PST
    • 7 likes
  19. KentForrester Moderator
    KentForrester

    Tex929rr (View Comment):

    Haha. I knew this would involve Bob. So Lola and Scotch have at least a dozen stuffed toys with varying degrees of squeakiness (Scotch is mostly indifferent to them). Mrs Tex is a dedicated Christmas decorator and this year the minute Lola saw this little white bear she grabbed it from whatever display it was part of. For a few days now the Mrs moves it and Lola tracks it down. No destruction yet, just proudly carrying it around. We had company over last night and she didn’t know what to do with the bear while she welcomed our neighbors. This is her giving me the side eye while she decides her next move.

    Tex, Bob has a special toy, a little ghost, that he doesn’t destroy. Like your dog, Bob carries around the toy in his mouth. He seems to want to give it to us, but when we reach for it, he turns away. 

    That looks like the stink eye your dog is giving you.

    • #19
    • December 1, 2020, at 10:08 AM PST
    • 4 likes
  20. RushBabe49 Thatcher

    And what was that about “no cutesy dog nicknames”? “The Bobster”?! What is that?

    • #20
    • December 1, 2020, at 10:56 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  21. Vance Richards Member
    Vance RichardsJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    KentForrester:

    That picture is priceless. You pretty much know how the rest of the story is going to go from that look.

    • #21
    • December 1, 2020, at 10:58 AM PST
    • 8 likes
    • This comment has been edited.
  22. JosePluma Thatcher

    Stripey Dog has a fondness for shoes, especially my shoes. She very considerately only chews on one out of each pair.

    • #22
    • December 1, 2020, at 11:03 AM PST
    • 8 likes
  23. Jim McConnell Member
    Jim McConnellJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Delightful photos… and story. Thanks, Kent.

    • #23
    • December 1, 2020, at 11:24 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  24. Captain French Moderator

    Mud Bay has the sturdiest dog toys. More expensive, but they last longer.

    • #24
    • December 1, 2020, at 11:37 AM PST
    • Like
  25. KentForrester Moderator
    KentForrester

    RushBabe49 (View Comment):

    And what was that about “no cutesy dog nicknames”? “The Bobster”?! What is that?

    My little joke. 

    • #25
    • December 1, 2020, at 11:50 AM PST
    • 1 like
  26. She Reagan
    SheJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    KentForrester: Marie will gather up the parts and resurrect the mouse by sewing the poor thing together. His resurrected form, seen to the left, however, is missing his eyes, one arm, one leg, one ear, half his suit, and a tail. We don’t know where those parts went to.

    Oh, HaHaHa!

    Just wait a day or two. I bet you find out.

    Signed,

    Your Voice of Experience

    • #26
    • December 1, 2020, at 12:13 PM PST
    • 12 likes
  27. Hartmann von Aue Member

    Misthiocracy got drunk and (View Comment):

    My cat would kill the “mouse” and leave it intact on the floor as proof of her superior murdering skills, but she wouldn’t destroy the “mouse” because destruction doesn’t prove anything.

    We had a cat who ritualistically drowned ever catnip mouse we ever gave him in his water bowl. It was bizarre.

    • #27
    • December 1, 2020, at 12:36 PM PST
    • 6 likes
    • This comment has been edited.
  28. KentForrester Moderator
    KentForrester

    Al French of Damascus (View Comment):

    Mud Bay has the sturdiest dog toys. More expensive, but they last longer.

    Al, we have some of the Kong brand toys. Bob can’t make a dent in those. 

    • #28
    • December 1, 2020, at 12:43 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  29. Goldwaterwoman Thatcher

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):
    You and Marie are so cruel, I say, Cruel!!! I must be cruel, too, since I laughed all the way through. Thanks, Kent, for the giggle.

    We needed a bit of levity at this particular time. Bob never fails to entertain.

    • #29
    • December 1, 2020, at 1:04 PM PST
    • 8 likes
  30. Old Buckeye Inactive

    Yay! A Bob post! I’m surprised by Bob’s destructiveness, though. How could anything so cute be that ornery?

    • #30
    • December 1, 2020, at 1:04 PM PST
    • 5 likes