Saturday, August 15, 2009

use the force, mum

Last night we got home from watching Coraline as a family, already creeped out by such an excellent creepy movie, to find the cats in Bumblebee's room, very, VERY excited and doing mad circles around the room, concentrating mainly upon his bedside table/filing cabinet thingy.

Uh oh.

I quickly closed the door of the room, with myself and the cats inside and the others outside, and proceeded to look around. This wasn't easy, because B's room was extremely messy, with a larger than usual floordrobe and lots of toys and comics everywhere. I moved the bedside cabinet, and a huge rat shot out and ran behind the bookshelf. The cats went crazy.

Uh oh.

I really don't have time to tell you a long and amusing account of my half-hour with ratty and the cats; suffice to say that I moved everything up onto the bed (which backfired when the rat got onto the bed) and away from the walls, which meant that the rat and the cats had a kind of circular race track with me leaping around trying not to encounter ratty myself. At one point it ran over my boot, and I had a vision of it running up my jeans leg.

Then it ran up the curtain and onto the rail; Pooter scrambled up onto the stereo but couldn't reach it.

pooter and ratty again

pooter and ratty

I had a brilliant idea: I opened the window, undid the wire screen, and attempted to knock the rat down so that it could escape out the window. Nice plan, but no banana, as it got to the windowsill, but then leapt IN and back onto the floor, and the race started again.


I grabbed a long pointy thing and tried to herd the rat towards the cats, hoping they would actually do the right thing and kill the bugger. A few times they had it cornered, and they growled and posed and acted like normal blokes in a bar-brawl: they chickened out and backed off.

Finally -- and I will apologise now to those who love rats, but I could do no more -- it leapt up on B's dirty clothes basket and I whacked it with the long thin thing I was holding. I whacked it a few times to stun it, and then scooped up the limp body and put it outside -- well and truly outside.

It wasn't until it was over that I realised that I'd been using a lightsabre!

Then I remade the bed, cleaned up a bit, and called B in -- and held a button to my eye and said "see? Your other mother can do anything..."

None of us had a deep sleep last night.


Anonymous said...

are you sure that's a rat? in the photo the face looks a little possum-ish. maybe the cats were being respectful rather than chicken?

Penthe said...

Lightsabre, eh? Do you feel more Darth Vader or Obi Wan?

fifi said...


so nice to hear someone else has such intimate encounters with rats, and not just me.

Good thing is, my very little and petite chocolate burmese female just bites their heads off fairly soon into the proceedings, which is handy. After so many years of dancing the ratty dance with chickenshit cats, she brings me such joy....

Pavlov's Cat said...

Oh God, how horrible for you. I would have needed three Scotches and a massage after that. Look at the size of the bloody thing, too. Possumish, as Anon says, though the icky naked scaly tail is always the giveaway. And ever since I read Jennie I fear rats v cats.

Must be seasonal -- I've been rodentless for several years now, but I heard something in the ceiling just the other night that I didn't like the sound of at all. It's lovely that the bloke next door has chooks, but where chooks are, rats and snakes will shortly also be.

Hil said...

What an outrageously big rat! Did you chanel this?:

naomi said...

Can you come and deal with the ones that have come for the chicken feed please?

My best rodent moment was realising just why the cat was so interested in the bag of flour stored under the stove. Hapless mouse shot out of bag, ran up my shoulder and leapt off, straight into jaws of cat. Second, smarter mouse had foresight to run the other way, outdoors. As he was covered in flour you could see him for quite some distance. Of course, all rodents save from a cat with no teeth.

And where was BB during all this? Great images of you with the lightsabre!

Ampersand Duck said...

With all respect, Anon, I do know the difference between a rat and a possum or any other kind of marsupial... and this, as Pav pointed out, was definitely a rat with a long naked scaly tail... UGH.

I was Obi Wan. It was Darth Maul. Or so we all decided tonight. I'd rather be Princess Amadala, but she never seemed to wield anything sharper than her hair.

BB was outside the door. I chucked his pyjamas out so that he could get ready for bed, but I think he was listening at the door, rivetted by the language I was using. He's now cleaned his room up beautifully.

Ampersand Duck said...

Sorry, 'B' was outside the door. Best Beloved was riding his newly serviced bike home in the dark, but even if he had been at home, it's me that does all the dirty jobs around the place :)

Bernice said...

Ah ha - so that's how you get B to clean up his room. Theo the farting Burmese ate a mouse's head off while kiddies were eating brekkie yesterday much to Tormentor's delight.

Mummy/Crit said...

That is a huge rat!! Well done. I'd've chickened out with the cats for sure. Good job with the lightsabre. Bumblebee must be very proud of you.

(doorbitch: templati

Maria said...

Lately we've been going after the mice at our place but they've been huge!
I am pretty sure that the ones we've caught so far are just mice (just fat mice) but sometimes when we've seen them scampering we've thought RAT!

It's at times like this I've thought a cat might be very useful.

So far we've made do with little traps and cheese.

Carol said...

Hilarious! I know just how you feel about being forced to whack the rat and you did give it the opportunity to go out the widow but I imagine it had lost the plot a bit from all the excitement. Amazes me how cats can do that backing off thing when they are meant to be trained killers. In a mouse plague in country NSW my dog and two cats sat on the settee with their feet safely tucked away and just watched the mice running up the walls and across the floor. The Force was with you even if the cats weren't.

Pavlov's Cat said...

I think it's (as with people) down to individual cat behaviour. I've got two cats and one does the backing-off thing while the other gets in there all guns blazing and slaughters on the spot, even when (to my knowledge) she'd never encountered a rodent of any stripe before in her life apart from the former PM on the teeve. (The moral of Duckie's photos here is that you can't tell whether a rodent is a lying rodent or a truthful rodent just by looking at it.)

Carol, I too have memories of a country mouse plague (so to speak) -- we had a tabby tom who'd be sitting patiently at the back door every morning with a large, neat pile of dead mice beside him, tail curled round his front paws, waiting for my father to come out and tell him he was a good cat.

byrd said...

And the muvee? Its was sooo talked about for soo long i thought it had past through the cinimas. I guess that was just designer/draftsmen/artytypes and now the wave of cinima attendeez can make their noise.
Not to make small the saga of the rat.

gumwnnes (well mat b have heard through the door!)

JahTeh said...

Duck, I hope you muttered "Take that, JWH!" every time you belted the rat. I knew we'd never really be rid of him.

Helen said...


Beer on keyboard

seepi said...

Coulda bin a native hopping mouse. They have big ears tho.

I try to pretend any rats we get are natives, to gross myself out less.

Not when the cat gets them tho.

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Poppy Letterpress said...

Being out of blogland for a while, I've only just come across this post. All I can say is well done for doing this just after watching Coraline. I saw it recently and know that I, for one, wouldn't be game after a movie like that!