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visitors since May 12, 2002
August 5, 2002
Dragon annoyed: dragon send rat

I have a splitting headache. This is, thankfully, a very rare occurence. I blame the rat, though.

Fortunately, rat sightings have also been rare. On the night it appeared, I saw it twice, but since then there's been no evidence of a continued rodent presence. I may not have to move out after all.

The second time I saw the rat was very late at night in the front hall. I "just happened" to be carrying a long wooden stick. "You never know," I thought to myself, "perhaps there'll be a chance to smack it in the head." I arrived in the front hall and heard some very unusual sounds. I also spotted where those sounds were coming from. An enormous rat was at the other end of a hall. It was trying to get out through the front door. Incredibly, foolishly, we had left the front door closed.

I glanced down at the stick. In the actual presence of the rat, it no longer seemed like a Mighty Weapon of Rodent Doom. As I weighed it in my hands I realised that it was a suspiciously light stick. It was long, but absurdly featherweight. Then I realised that I had armed myself with a balsa wood stick.

Suddenly, the concept of trying to kill an enormous rat with a single well aimed blow seemed like an amazingly stupid idea.

At this exact moment the rat realised that the only way out of the front hall was at my end. A millisecond or two later I noticed how wonderfully decisive rats are. They're really most impressive in this regard. But further thoughts in this or any other direction were curtailed by the sight of a high-speed rat coming straight at me.

I'm standing in my hallway clutching a balsa wood stick and a rat is charging me.

It wasn't really how I'd planned to spend the evening.

And if you're wondering how hard it is to hit a rat on the head with a flimsy bit of balsa wood, let me tell you this: it's extremely hard. Especially when, at the exact moment the rat is running past you, you're eight feet in the air, and still climbing.

So I learnt something tonight. I learnt that close proximity to a high-speed rat triggers an automatic response. Whether you like it or not, you succumb to a tremendous, involuntary desire to pole vault.

At the same instant the rat disappeared behind a couch, I reached the top of my arc. I had survived near contact with mankind's ancient enemy, but was soon to meet a floor. I made one spectacular jump to nowhere, and I've still got the headache to prove it.

     Posted by Sean Hegarty at 11:06 PM in the Animals category | Comments (1)
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