The Ode to Sir George V

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Posted by Wafa K. | Posted on September 22, 2011


Small, sleek, cowering, timorous beast/ O, what a panic is in your breast!/ You need not start away so hasty/ With hurrying scamper!/ I would be loath to run and chase you,/ With murdering plough-staff

-Rober Burns, “To A Mouse”

Like most upperclassmen at Hopkins, I live off-campus. My apartment building dates to the first half of the twentieth century and thus has its roots firmly into this patch of Baltimorean land. That comes with the occasional viewing of furry friends, which I had never seen in their natural environment because I had only ever worked with them in a lab. The first time I saw a mouse in the early dawn light, at that time where shadows often play tricks on your eyes, I sat straight up and watched in shock as this triumphant mouse went home after a night of scavenging.

Needless to say, I wasn’t having that. The exterminator that services our building is spectacular and got rid of the problem within a few weeks, with the aid of our constant vigilance as to where we left our chocolate and snacks. It had been a good seven months since any sighting when my roommate woke me up a few weeks ago at 1:30 in the morning insisting that she could hear a mouse collecting spoils in her snack box. And sure enough, he was. Was ensued was standing on her bed, yelling sporadically at the mouse to go away, and then a 2 am trek to the dumpster to get rid of the box of snacks, our trash and anything else we conceived in our sleepy state would be attractive to a mouse.

That mouse, which was obviously the mouse version of the fat cousin from the movie Ratatouille, had the audacity to come back and find a stash of chocolate my roommate had forgotten about since we moved into the apartment. And not only was he audacious in coming during waking hours, but this bourgeois mouse selectively only ate dark chocolate and then around the caramel in the Milky Ways. I was a little be shocked and a little bit impressed at the personality he demonstrated.

But, despite my respect for this mouse and his elitist tastes, he had to go. Our apartment underwent a bleach-cleansing process and traps were set every three feet in an attempt to encourage our friend, now named Sir George V because a bourgeois mouse deserves a name with a title and a number, to die a gallant death.

And sure enough, a few days ago, around 6 am while I was making my morning coffee I heard the sure snap of the end of the tale of one of the only mouse that I’ll ever have any inkling of liking for. I was seriously a bit sad to see him go, I like animals with personality, but I rather remember Sir George V fondly than have to continually put my chocolate on top of the fridge. So so-long Sir George V, it’s been real – RIP and please don’t send any of your friends or family to take your spot!

2 Responses to “The Ode to Sir George V”

  1. Kate T. Says:

    Glad you’re mouse-free! !

  2. Laura S. Says:

    I love the way you told this story! It was a great read!

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