02 September 2004

It's odd when you take stock of your life and realise "I should feel like shit, the state of my life should make grown men weep... but actually, I'm OK."

I think the anti-depressants that stop me from spending my life curled up in bed saying "no, I can't do that" may actually just confuse me straight into a therapists office instead.

I may of mentioned on one or two occasions that I live in a fairly horrid, inaccessible, overpriced bedsit with no window. I applied to my local council to be rehoused, and they gave me a grand total of 55 points. This basically means I'm sentenced to spending the rest of my life living somewhere so inaccessible that I can't even cook a proper meal, and I break my bones doing simple things like having a shower.

Things got less pleasant a few days before I went on holiday. I was chatting with the guy who lived in the bedsit next door to me (he moved out a couple of days later), and he said;

"I saw a mouse in my room this morning. I chased it and it ran straight out underneath the front door, didn't even need it opened."

Now, I'm the woman from Tom & Jerry. Well, I would be if I could climb up on chairs... or if I even wore skirts, not to mention ones with 50 layers. My immediate response was getting a friend round to block up the gaps under my doors with draught excluder's. I need no rodent friends, thank you.

So, I went on holiday and spent a week in Edinburgh. One of the many (and one of the better) shows I took in whilst up there was The Elephant Woman. But that I shall return to.

Staying in a youth hostel, I took some food up to Scotland with me (who knew they had supermarkets outside London?) Being ill for the first couple of days, I only ate crackers. And then being so busy for the rest of the time... I only ate fast food. So, I brought all the food I'd dragged up there back to London with me.

Being one of the worlds most lethargic people it obviously took me a few days to unpack my bag when I got home (OK, I admit it. It was 8 to be precise). In with all my clean clothes that I hadn't worn, and all the programmes, free papers etc, I'd picked up was this carrier bag of food, with the handles tied. Now, when I say "food", I mean Batchelors "Pasta 'n' Sauce" and two Pot Noodles. And a couple of unopened packs of crackers I picked up whilst up there.

Yesterday I was hoovering the cupboard in which I live, and I found some detritus on the floor by my bookcase. At a glance it looked like the little specs of paint that fall off if you bang a nail in badly and you make the plaster crack a bit. This detritus wasn't close enough to the wall to of been little flaky paint chips, and while it may also be next to my bed (my room is so small that there are no gaps between items of furniture) it was certainly not damaged caused to the wall by any practices I've been engaging in in my bed. I just wrote it off as random detritus and hoovered it up.

And then I finally unpacked my bag. I "folded" (read: scrunched) up my clothes and put them in the wardrobe, stuffed all the copies of fest I'd acquired into my magazine rack, and went to try and find space for the food in my kitchen cupboard.

"What's that? That cracker packet is empty. Where are the crackers? They're nowhere in the bag. Where've they gone? And why does the packet look like it's been nibbled open?"

The detritus by the bed suddenly made sense. As did those scratchy noises I'd been hearing in the night and trying to write them off as coming from outside somewhere.

My immediate reaction was to go back to Homebase and buy a plug in rodent repeller that I'd seen in there. It's all glamour for me.

I'd not heard the scratchy noises at all during the day. My new roommate appears to be more nocturnal than I. Until I plugged in the repeller. Suddenly there were frantic scratchy noises coming from behind the TV. That didn't cease. All night.

So while I sat up all night in fear of a cracker nibbling member of the order of Rodentia, trying to watch TV and ignore the ludicrously loud scratchy noises, I was contemplating my happiness. I had nowhere else I could go at 2am to avoid something that was scaring that shit out of me, and it was one more thing wrong with the hole I'm living in that I can't get out of. I should've been sad, but apart from the fear of the beast in the corner, I actually felt OK. Quite a good thing really seeing as it was a long night of awakeness waiting to be able to do something to eradicate that sodding noise.

This evening things have hopefully been sorted. The same friend that excluded my draughts came round and found the hole the mice have been crawling into my room through. We went to Homebase together again. This time we bought poison and squirty expanding stuff to plug up the hole with. It would appear that this stuff doesn't cease expanding though and I fear that by morning I may of been engulfed by something resembling a giant, ever-increasing meringue. If I never update again, someone might want to report that to the authorities.

I'm frustrated by the fact that the plug in "repeller" seems to piss rodents off to the point of agitation, but not to the point of making them leave me the fuck alone. I'm also worried that it's supposed to be inaudible to humans. Huh. Now, my hearing is far from perfect, and earlier this year I was diagnosed with having Auditory Processing Difficulties (I'm just a wheeling catalogue of conditions, aren't I? I'm just looking forward to the diabetes, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, cataracts, glaucoma, heart disease, compulsion to cook roast dinners, and cancer than I'm genetically predisposed to). But I can hear the thing.

Now, The Elephant Woman (oddly enough, a spoof of The Elephant Man) was about a woman whose mother was a human, and whose father was an elephant (to me that just sounds painful. I tried doing some research into just how painful by typing "elephant cock size" into google and just found a lot of sites not suitable for innocent eyes like mine). I've often wondered about my parentage. After all, I have two blue-eyed parents and my eyes are green. According to my GCSE science teacher, this should not be possible.

Let's examine the evidence: I'm short, I'm unusually hairy for a human female, and I can hear the repeller, I seem to have the same natural waking hours as my new flatmate. Lets face it, apparently mice and I share the same taste in crackers, and many people find my appearance scary.

Surely if I were half mouse, I should feel some kinship and not be pouring poison down mouse holes? Well, that's the human in me, and our murderous behaviour towards those who aren't identical in beliefs, appearance, personality or ability to ourselves.

It's late, and I think I should trim my whiskers. I also need cheese. Just remember kids, I won't have nightmares.

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