My current work in progress:

1. Ashburn, designed by Melanie Berg, knit from Woolfolk Tynd in colorways 6, 7, and 8 on a 4 mm (U.S. size 6) needle.
2. Myriad stealth projects.

Tuesday

lucy093008 208x240 Tuesday

Lucy is pleased at the number of you who expressed a desire to spin her fur. There’s still time to enter the drawing — leave a comment on yesterday’s entry, and I’ll choose a recipient on Wednesday (October 1) afternoon.

Okay, that’s the major excitement in these parts. I’m knitting along on my Daily Sweater and dreaming about future Daily Sweaters with some more complex lace patterning in them.  Hey, it could happen. Here is my Daily Sweater in its current state:

sweater093008 240x160 Tuesday

I am at the point where I get to divide the body from the sleeves.

In exciting workplace news, we are infested with a hoard of angry mice at the office. The sort of measure pictured below makes them angrier still:

mousetrap093008 240x184 Tuesday

These damned traps have been set up every 4 feet or so in my office by our building maintenance people and unfortunately we often find little victims in them. When the traps were first put down, I briefly considered triggering them all because I am opposed to inhumane traps, but two thing stopped me:

1. The maintenance people would keep resetting the traps, as they come around and check them pretty frequently.

2. Klutz that I am, I’d likely break a finger triggering a trap.

I guess it is a bit unrealistic of me to wish they’d use humane traps and then take the mice out of the city into the country to release them.

When I discovered a mouse corpse yesterday, a coworker suggested to me that if I were a good mommy, I’d bring it home to Lucy. I responded that I didn’t want Lucy eating common city mice. If I am going to offer her mice, they will be organic country mice.

Not that I’m going to be offering her mice, alive or dead. Only stuffed toy ones. Sorry, Lucy.

Comments

  1. 1. thank you for sparing us the sight of a poor little mousie carcass.
    2. you could take Miss Lucy on a field trip to your office to brush up on her hunting skills . . . . though that doesn’t solve the non-organic bit.
    3. Avery says “hello woo-sea! I learned about birds at school and my kitty Sophie likes birds! Do you like birds?”

    Katheryns last blog post..the mommy tool box features an huge "guilt" hammer

  2. If you weren’t planning to prevent Lucy from becoming a predator, this would be the ideal justification for Bring Your Cat to Work Day. Given that she is used to the delightful things you feed her, I doubt that she would have any interest in mice beyond their entertainment value.

    We used to have a horrible mouse problem where I work which is next to a landfill. They set up humane traps all around some of the buildings, but the rodent free buildings were the ones with the feral cat colonies. Unfortunately the management didn’t like that particular form of integrated pest management and encouraged activities that spurred the cats to move elsewhere.

  3. I’ve always wondered why cat food doesn’t come in flavors like “Mouse” and “Small Bird.” I mean, how many cats do you know that go out and hunt beef on the hoof? ;-) And as a species, doesn’t it seem odd that cats are so enamored of fish but have such a strong avoidance to getting wet? How did they develop such a craving for a water-dependent food item?

    I used the humane traps in a previous house (with a mouse problem until my little domesticated house kitties learned how to play the mice into exhaustion and then I would move them outside). I used to relocate the mice a block up the street onto the community college campus lol!

  4. In truth, those mousetraps are a pretty humane way of disposing of mice. You’re right that there’s no point transporting the critters elsewhere. Remember they carry some pretty nasty viruses as well as pooping all over the place. IMHO, poison and glue traps are inhumane and I’m not wild about live traps when people forget to check them and the mice starve to death. Hey, I’m happy to send you a black snake. It’s a natural way to control mice.

  5. Hrm… I wonder how marketable “Organic Country Mice” would be? Pretty Lucy – mice are for traps!

    Megan S.s last blog post..A MeMe from Opal!

  6. You can probably set off the traps with a pencil. Just keep back, in case they snap up when they go off.

    I’ve had mice have a party on my desk at work — had some packets of Hershey Kisses from TLE on my desk, the mice came up and made confetti out of the foil wrappers until one of them discovered how to get to the candy without making such a mess. There were a couple of half-shells of empty foil wrappers, some chewed on paper Kiss tags, and general chaos from the little party-goes. I giggled as I cleaned up the mess, thinking of dancing mousies munching chocolate. Property Management set some traps, and a few little brown mice were caught. It’s been quiet now for a couple of months.

  7. *snort* organic country mice :)
    Thanks for the laugh and for the looks I got from co-workers when I explained!

    Amys last blog post..Tide Pooling

  8. Unfortunately the humane traps aren’t so humane. We had mice a few years ago. Tried the sticky traps. They were AWFUL! So amazingly terrible. Plus, according to the woman at the local wildlife rehab center, once mice have been around human smell (i.e. the oils from your hands when you place the trap) many other mice will avoid them and apparently they smell stronger to predators. She recommend the snap traps too, though I agree that they are terrible at least the little mice don’t suffer. :( I hope they go away soon!

    Danas last blog post..insanity…

  9. The traps will break your finger, they are strong enough to crack a pencil like a toothpick. Personally I feel that out of every trap out there, getting one that ends life quickly is far more humane than trapping something and letting it starve to death.

    Also the idea of organic mice cracks me up, which is what I needed after a frustrating day.

  10. Karla (threadbndr) says:

    Molly says to tell Lucy “Meece don’t taste so good anyhow, even to us dogz. And Moms yell ‘NO, drop it!’ when you catch them!”

  11. After I make my first Daily Sweater, I’m thinking of making one in DIC Classy to match my Asparagus Cable socks with an asparagus cable panel in the center front and maybe do half cables in the sleeve. Have to get the plain one done first. I bought the yarn with the idea of making drop shoulder steeked sweater to match.

    I hope to cast on next week sometime.

  12. One night a while back, when we had two cats, Orca, a large, sweet, loving, not so bright tuxedo cat, and Quattro, slim and black, smart, sly and quick, the first rain of the season washed a nest of mice out of the downspout next to the garage door, a nice dry garage where we keep the kitties litter box. Well, that night was an exciting night for the kitties and the cat door between the house and garage, which is right outside our bedroom door, went slap, slap, slap alllll night. This was accompanied by thundering runs up and down the hall. When I dragged myself out of bed the next morning, I found a partially digested mouse “rejected” on the hall carpet, and in the kitchen, neatly deposited in the food bowl (for later, perhaps?), a seemingly undamaged mouse on its back little feet in the air.
    This was all before coffee.

  13. Can’t stand the filthy little creatures. But I don’t want to be the one to set the traps and empty them. So I make the big guy do it!

    Marions last blog post..Short one

  14. You could offer to bring some of Lucy’s cat box scrapings to work in jars. The odeur of a strong feline might be enough to put the mice off.

    As for spinning Lucy’s fur, you have seen VIP fibers, perhaps, where for a price they will do just such a task for you? http://www.vipfibers.com/

    Hissy Stitchs last blog post..Fancy stitch markers — Now on Etsy

  15. California has a proposition 2 on the Nov ballot – Standards for confining farm animals………especially chickens & veal…….so……make sure your organic mice have condos & amenities!!

  16. My cats generally kill mice before we know that they are there. Sometimes they eat some of the mouse. It’s my 14 yr old’s job to get rid of them (has been for years!). But, we live in the woods, and everyone gets mice in winter.

    Colleens last blog post..Something to work on

  17. Margie from Maryland says:

    “angry ” mice? OK, I’ll bite – how did you know that they’re angry??? Protest signs?

    Anyway, having had the mouse problem at home, good luck!

  18. Bring Lucy to work with you………

    Cindys last blog post..Cat by a Hot Tin Roof!

  19. I understand that just the presence of cats will make mice go away.

    I used to work in a semi-agricultural setting and, after our office cat retired (went home with a worker because of medication needs), we were inundated with mice. The office cat wasn’t catching them. She was old, blind and declawed. The mice were chewing up wiring and paper and whatnot. I rallied to bring another cat inside, and, in no time, no more mice. The new cat was also a foundling, also elderly, hardly any teeth and slept the manditory 23 hours/day, so I’m pretty sure she wasn’t eating the mice either.

    Maybe, rather than bring Lucy to work, your office would like a nice rescue cat like Lucy (maybe not so hairy though).

  20. Having just fought the mouse battle at home (large field behind the house, cool weather set in…), I’ve just had experience with mouse traps. For starters, the one that’s shown doesn’t look to be set quite right. While the bait needs to be next to the wall, the trap itself has to be free and not able to get caught under a door (or top of a drawer).

    Those springs are pretty tough and often will turn upside down with the mouse underneath. I agree with previous posters that assuming the mice take the bait, most of the time, they die a pretty swift death. I used to housesit for someone who set glue traps and that was awful. Just awful.

    I handled the traps with rubber gloves on and usually washed them down afterwards. Hold them by the sides and don’t get the fingers anywhere near the top.

    And yes, we have an elderly cat. She successfully caught one mouse and woke us up at 3:30am to tell us about it. I think the other mice were just a little too fast for her.

    lauragayles last blog post..Hey! It’s my friend Carrie!

  21. Maaaany years ago, we had a mouse in our kitchen that was stealing insulation from the refrigerator, carrying it across the kitchen, past the cat dishes, and making a nest with it in the burner on the stove that no one ever used. Mom set up a mousetrap by the cat food dishes. The next morning, I opened my bedroom door and was greeted by Mikey, the Great Hunter, who stood over his fresh kill and was eager to offer it to me as a gift. He hadn’t even taken the mousetrap off; he’d just dragged the whole mess up the stairs as though I wouldn’t notice that he let the trap do all the work.

    Kristens last blog post..Reusable swiffer cover

  22. Actually a vet told me that a mouse is the ideal and perfect food for housecats, the fat and protein content are completely perfect balance, etc. and I guess they can use the tail to floss their teeth. Plus exercise, both mental and physical. He said second best thing we can do is duplicate the size, amount of calories and nutritional content to = 1 mouse, once or twice a day. And that most dry food is complete dreck for cats. I do alternate canned, or homemade meat-based food with very high quality kibbles in food balls, which gives them such exercise and stimulation, and entertains me too

    claires last blog post..Old brainz, new tools

  23. They hire groups of goats here as a natural way to clear city land of shrubs. Maybe the goat folks also have herds of cats for hire?

  24. Our super cat Perry, catches mice in the garden and then brings them home. For us to play with! I have become quiet good at catching them with a small cardboard box.
    But sometimes husband and I are tired and having to run around the living room moving furniture at 11pm is not much fun.
    Stupid cat sits there and watches us.
    Can’t your work get their own working cat? With a pension scheme for the top mouser of course.

    Karins last blog post..The best laid plans….

  25. Besides, dead isn’t fun, live food you can play with.

    Elysbeths last blog post..Ketiva ve-chatima tovah

  26. We live in a rural area, and after chasing one too many cat chasing a mouse around the bedroom at 3 AM (I actually think they caught them in the basement and brought them upstairs to show off) we finally got the foundation lintels covered by concrete porches instead of decks, to keep the woodchucks from digging under the lintels into the crawlspace, and at the same time providing the mice access. (Some sentence, huh?)

    Anyway – we always threw out the wooden traps with the carcasses into the woods. I just didn’t want to mess with the traps, and consider the disposal ‘recycling’ for the other denizens of the woods.

    There are some little live traps that are a squared tube that tilts when the mouse runs in. Unfortunately, they generally die of fright in these, so the net result is the same, and perhaps not so quick.

  27. Sweater variations would be very nice. Take something comfy, fun to knit, and find ways to do it again without being bored. Go for it!

    Barbara-Kays last blog post..Back in training

  28. I hope your mouse infestation clears out quickly. I can’t wait to see your sweater completed. :)

    LittleWits last blog post..Religious Freedom

  29. IF you did catch them in humane traps, and they were transported to the country, those of us who live in the country would just have to trap them anyway LOL!!!!

    Anne Fs last blog post..When Knitting becomes Obsession……

  30. Jane in PA says:

    We were fighting a losing battle with mice in the house when a stray cat turned up next door. I didn’t really want another pet, but he and I struck a deal – nice, cushy home in exchange for rodent control – and he has kept his end of the deal nicely.
    At first I didn’t think he was actually catching any mice and that just the smell of cat drove them away because there weren’t any corpses around. Then he started bringing home his “trophies” from outside – mice, voles, a bird or two. All were dead – no playing with his food for this mighty hunter – and I had to put my DH on corpse duty (hey, if I take care of all the mess from bodily functions, the least he can do is take care of the dead bodies, right?)
    So, anyway, I cast my vote for adopting a friendly stray or shelter cat as head mouser at your business. You can’t get rodent control that’s any more natural or organic than that and pets at work have been proved to be beneficial to morale. Heck, he/she won’t even need business cards or a key to the executive washroom!

    PS – I love Margie’s comment about angry mice (post 16) – I have visions of the little rascals marching around with their signs, fists raised – LOL!

  31. Oh man…the sight of that trap breaks my heart.

    My son has two pet rats, and we adore them. Now, perhaps rats are a bit more intelligent than mice? Who knows. All I can say is that they have personalities, and I can’t imagine any harm befalling them.

    Kudos to you for allowing Lucy to dine on more decadent delights.

    Nathalies last blog post..AuburnChick Waits for a Package

  32. I loved the one comment about “Take your cat to work day.” Ha Ha Ha
    The sweater is coming along great!

  33. Oh, I hear you about the inhumane traps. I hate them. When will everyone realize that having kitties around makes the mice stay away? I haven’t seen a mouse in ages, and I credit my cats Gypsy and Tiger.

    Incidentally, I hate the traps you feature in this post, but the glue traps have to be the single most disgusting traps created. I live in one of the NYC boroughs, so trash is brought to the curb on collection day. As I walked to the subway, I saw a glue trap thrown on top of one of the bags, likely a super’s afterthought after putting the trash out. The poor mouse was still alive, trying to get off of the trap. Thank God my kids weren’t with me; I ended up near tears just seeing it. Inhumane.

    Rosemarys last blog post..

  34. O.K. – - I am a HUGE animal lover and do I dare admit, even save spiders. However, having a mouse running around your house pooping in the corners is just not acceptable. I have 2 cats – - one is a lean, smart hunter (Max), the other is a bit overweight, adorable and a wonderful snuggler (Pharaoh). I have seen the poor half dead creatures Max has caught outside either being tossed up in the air like a pizza pie or just staggering around dazed in front of Max while Max is taking a “break” but still keeping a close eye on the mouse – - sad, long drawn out death (I do try to save the poor things from Max – - but usually I’m too late). The mouse in the house, for whatever reason, was not being pursued by either cat (I believe Pharaoh just doesn’t have it in him and Max is just exhausted when he comes in and therefore he eats then promptly curls up and falls fast asleep). We placed one of those so called inhumane traps, like the one you have photoed, in our home to catch this one pooping rogue mouse. It did its job swiftly. I don’t like it, but I did feel as if it was a much quicker death than death by Max, poisioning, or those nasty ass glue traps – - horrible! I like to think there was no torture involved for the poor little guy.

    WendyT

  35. We’ve tried the humane mousetraps and the mice die in them very quickly from panic. Every fall we have an invasion. My very clever husband caught one with a pail that had gotten in our living room by climbing up on our roof via our two-story chimney and then through a hole the mouse had chewed next to it where he appeared at ceiling height before falling amidst my screams. They are destructive little things. And another mouse chewed through the repaired hole until my husband stuffed it with steel wool first. (Apparently they can’t abide the stuff.)
    Not only do mice carry nasty viruses but they chew endlessly in walls, including on electrical wiring creating a fire hazard. We live sort of, in the country and the mice are extra big and healthy. They can leap like a gazelle when startled, as did the one nesting in our lawnmower in a shed over the winter. I was cutting the grass when he leaped 3 feet out and I promptly leapt the other direction! We had a broken car in our drive waiting a month for a charity pick-up tow truck and a mouse had made a nest in the trunk! We need more foxes! (Outdoor cats don’t survive here because of raccoons and coyotes.)
    Sorry for the long rant.

  36. Organic country mice… hee hee!

    Though, I have to agree with other commenters, those mouse traps are better than mouse poison. Mouse traps like that usually remind me of the children’s book series about the Borrowers, though, which makes me smile a little even though the traps make me sad.

    Nicoles last blog post..WIsP Wednesday

  37. Please don’t send all those live caught mice out to the country. Then I will have to deal with them. We get an invasion every fall as they look for a nice cozy place to winter. I have to use spring traps because if I release them, they come right back in. I’m not a cat person, dogs suit me more, so no kitties to keep the rodents down.

    I’m also on an anti-raccoon rant at the moment, as they are digging up my potted plants, and flinging potting soil and dead plants everywhere. When I saw a road killed bandit in front of the house this morning, I can’t say that I didn’t grin a bit. Sorry, but it’s the reality of living in the country.

  38. Well if you change your mind about feeding Lucy mice, I can send you some nice corn fed Iowa country mice…. just let me know!!

    Janices last blog post..Dogs As Teachers….

  39. Wendy O'C says:

    Ick. Poor little mice. Buy your maintenance guys a package of little brown paper lunch bags and request that they set the traps up inside an open bag — easy disposal, and no one has to look at the corpses.

    At least they could do it with the ones in your office — right?

  40. OMG!I hate mousetraps SO much. I feel so bad for the little guys. In AP BIO CLASS back in HS we use to get exta credit to bring live mice in to feed the snake. I couldn’t watch it. Thank you for sticking with STUFFED.

  41. This reminds me of an incident recently at my daughter’s home. She has two male kitties, Taters & Filo, who love to spend their days in the summer, on the enclosed sun porch. Taters is getting older and has Feline Kidney Disease. One day he was acting as though he was not feeling well, and she was becoming worried, as he was not eating or drinking and she was sure the end was nigh. Then he decided to empty his little stomach, (to put it delicately) and she discovered a partially digested mouse, blackened almost beyond recognition! It was sooo gross!! He, of course, was fine after he started eating & drinking again. After investigating the porch, she discovered (behind the hot tub) a very small drainage hole that apparently had been there all along, perhaps since before the porch was enclosed. Needless to say, it has since been blocked off!

  42. Nothing worse than listening to a mouse scream while trying to get loose from a sticky board. I used to live across from a corn field, and would watch them all running from the combine. Spring traps are the only humane way to go.. IMHO.

  43. I have a mouse in my workplace. They set those exact same traps with sugar, ’cause he has a very sweet tooth. So he somehow licked all the sugar off the trap, pooed and peed on it to mark where he had been, and went to the next. Not one trap sprung. You ask”how does she know it’s a he?” This is Texas, when guys can pee anywhere they want, they do.

  44. Rolling Eyes says:

    Horde, not hoard.

  45. In my old apartment, we had a bit of a mouse problem. We tried a number of things, including plug-in high frequency emitting devices that were supposed to keep the mice away, but nothing worked.

    Although I hated having to empty the snap traps (actually, I hated having to set them in the first place), I honestly think this is the most humane – not to mention most practical – method. My landlady had set out poison, and my roommate found a dead mouse in her bathroom that had obviously suffered a lot before it finally succumbed to the poison. It’s gut had been eaten away by the poison in a most terrible way. We asked our landlady to stop setting out poison.

    Snap traps, if they’re good, are an instant, clean way to go, I guess. Then, you’re not likely to have a dying animal crawl off in between your walls to rot. And I agree with many of the other comments; glue traps are an invitation to all sorts of inhumane treatment.

    Lanas last blog post..But not a real green dress (that’s cruel)

  46. When I have to set out these traps I put them in a brown paper lunchbag. When the mouse meets his maker I tclose the bag and throw the whole thing out!