Last week a three day saga played out in the bowl of a toilet in what I call the back bathroom. As I was unzipping my fly making myself ready to “take a leak” it came to me, a statement that has always perplexed me. If I was leaving something then in the case of what I was about to do, I should be “leaving a leak” not "taking a leak”. I wonder if someone out there has an answer? It’s 2 o’clock in the morning and I had fallen asleep in my favorite chair so it was easier to use the back bathroom to “leave a leak” when I noticed a light black ball at water level. I needed more light than the bathroom nite light to understand what I was looking at. So on with the bathroom light that I very much dislike using, as it wakes me completely leaving me no longer in half asleep mode. Well much to my surprise it was a mouse that was in getting a drink. I’m sure he must have been real thirsty because it’s a pretty good climb to get up on the seat and then he had to dive in to get his drink. It took my wife most of my life to teach me that when I finish, I must leave the seat down. But what gets me in this age of equality is why isn’t it fair to ask her to leave the seat up for me? I guess it will remain one of those iniquities that makes a marriage a marriage. Back to the mouse. Well at 2 o’clock in the morning angry to be fully awake I said “your going down mouse” as I pushed hard on the flush handle. But much to my surprise as the water started to swirl and become a violent whirlpool Mr. Mouse showed me just what a determined swimmer he was. For when the flushing whirlpool with all the sounds of rushing water subsided and became a placid pool again there he was. Damn you, just one more bowl full and this time you're gone. Rats, rats and double rats is much more satisfying at 2 o’clock in the morning than to say mouse, mouse and double mouse. Down with the flush handle water swirling, whirlpool taking everything in the bowl to a septic tank that hasn’t been pumped in many years. Mr. mouse must have had a premonition for he swam with great vigor and again when the tumult was over there he was on the edge of the pool with his head up or maybe held high. Okay mouse you’ll probably be dead in the morning and then you will donate yourself to the circle of life.
The next day Zee and I used our regular bathroom in our bedroom so Mr. Mouse was left to rest and recuperate but on the third day. Zee had need to use the back bathroom and as she glanced in the bowl to make sure there was no mysterious monster waiting to bite her fanny there he was clinging to the water edge of the bowl. The chain of events that followed were very similar to mine. Flush, whirlpool, swim like hell, placid pool and he’s still here. This can’t be “Jack you told me of this Mighty Mouse two days ago, I’m becoming a believer ” “Okay mouse this time you get the flush plus two gallons of water let’s see you swim yourself out this time. So with much turbulence and a good riddance, Zee watched him disappear in a great agitated tumult of sucking, swirling, foaming H2O.
It was getting along toward evening time and I had to “leave a leak” and the back bathroom was closest. As I casually lifted the seat up there he was, still very much alive. How could this be, to suffer this much and still have the determination to live? Okay Jack, what now, what are you going to do? Mr. Mouse looks up at me much like a Roman gladiator waiting for his sentence of life or death. My dilemma brings a lump to my throat that is growing ever bigger and now a tear to my eye. The cure was a big thumbs up and I immediately felt myself able to breath again. As I reached into the bowl for Mr.Mouse’s tail he looked up at me and I’m sure I heard him say "Do you have as much pluck and grit as I do?" Good question, I hope if your predicament ever comes my way I would be as brave as you, but there are no guarantees.
I placed Mr. Mouse in a planter box outside my back door at about 7 pm. Next morning, first thing, I hurried to the back door which I quickly opened and with great anticipation I looked down where I had put him “he was gone”. So long teacher and friend.