OK, so “The Rat Diaries” is carrying it a bit far, but the vermin saga with which I’m dealing seems to have taken on a life of its own.
We first met The Rat nearly two months ago (“Screaming Echoes of a Girly-Girl”) and re-encountered him three weeks later (“Targeted for Termination”). The Rat returned yet again in the wee hours of Tuesday morning –- and yet again eluded capture.
There has been a baited rat trap -– one of the spring-loaded, catch-’em-alive metal cages -- underneath my kitchen sink since Oct. 15th. However, as has been touched on before, this is no ordinary rat.
The latest episode began as the last: the rustling sounds under the sink (that’s The Rat) followed by the heart-racing adrenaline rush on the couch (that’s me). I heard the thumping, the scratching, the furtively disgusting movement for just a few minutes – then nothing.
Screwing up my courage, I moved the rat barricade (yes, it’s been in place this whole time; makes washing dishes akin to negotiating an obstacle course) and threw open the doors. Underneath the sink, the trap remained set, but the food inside had been moved from one side to the other and flipped over.
That’s right: The Rat KNEW BETTER than to enter the trap, choosing to attempt to get the food from the outside, failing, and retreating.
Do you read my point here?
THE RAT KNOWS WHAT A RAT TRAP IS.
It’s now nearing 5 a.m., and the adrenaline hasn’t quite dissipated. Sleep coming soon? Doubtful.
A cognizant rat. And all this time I’ve been worrying about the machines becoming sentient.