Weekend interspecies cup final

Home fixtures: MacBride: 1, Mouse: 0

Well, the clog-dancing rodent no longer occupies the attic above our bedroom. Hurrah! Stuart wins! And it was a HUGE mouse as well: big, fat, pointy headed bugger what did smell all of poo and wee. Really, really stinky. Have you ever picked up a mouldering onion – all stinky and dripping – and thought that doesn’t smell too good? Well it’s Calvin Klein’s Obsession compared to a terrified, urine-soaked and faeces-clarted mouse.

She Who Must Have Her Head Examined wanted to release Mr Mouse into the wild, just down the road from our house (fool! Doesn’t she know that mice operate an illegal underground network and he’d be given forged papers and smuggled back into Casa MacBride before sundown?), but I stood firm. Well, we were in the car, so technically I sat firm, but you know what I mean. Mr Mouse was going a damn sight further away than that.

Just in case he manages to find his way back to the homestead, I’ve alerted the Home Guard* and put up posters with Mr Mouse's face on them. OK, he may come up with a cunning disguise – like a beret, or a big moustache – but I’m betting the cat’s going to see through all that. He’ll be all “Guten Abend” and she’ll be like, “Your German is very good.” And he’ll say “Why thank you… Damn!” And then she’ll eat him.

Grendel: 2, Mice: 0

Little miss had something of a bumper crop yesterday, two huge mice sent to the great litter tray in the sky. She scarfed the first one all to herself, but was generous enough to share the second with Fiona and me. Of course, to begin with we couldn’t actually tell which end of the mouse she’d left for us – it was a featureless furry joint of mouse-meat, with flags-of-all-nations innards and intestinal balloon animals trailing out across the porch floor. On closer examination it turned out to be the back half, but she’d eaten both hind legs and the tail, just to keep us guessing. She’s such a kidder.

Mouse: 1, MacBride: 0

I’m not sure if this one makes Sunday a ‘three mouse day’ for Little Miss, or if it’s just that we have the stupidest mice in the whole country. At close of play last night I went through to chuck the chicken remnants in the bin and something small and furry scuttled across my foot. ‘Oh-ho,’ thinks I, ‘better not be that noisy, clog-dancing bugger back again!’ There follows some rapid-paced mouse chasing through the piles of junk and boxes of oddments we keep in the porch, but at last my razor-sharp reflexes and big, human brain get the upper hand – GRAB! Scruff of the mouse’s neck caught betwixt thumb and forefinger. It’s not Mr Stinky, the mouse from before. This is a new one. “Squeeeeeeak!” goes the mouse, “Squeak, squeak, squeak, squeak, squeeeeeeak!”. Now I’m no expert, but I’m willing to bet it wasn’t saying “Unhand me you bounder! I demand to speak to the Mouseular Consul!”, no this was much more your expletive style of squeaking.

Of course, I do my best to reassure the rodent that all will be well, that I am in fact saving he/she/it from the clutches of the furry exterminator cat monster, but the little sod wriggles and squiggles and nearly manages to break free. Using my human-style brain I try to get a better grip with my left hand. And the little bastard bit me! Right on the thumb! Ungrateful sod! Instant welling up of blood, rivers of it. Swearing like a mouse, I fling the rotten rodent over the fence and into the field, hurling epithets after it like the foul-languaged trouper that I am.

You know in all those films where someone has to swear a blood oath, or they need a drop of blood to counter an age-old curse, they always draw some fancy dagger along the person’s palm? Big knife, right across the palm – which for some unknowable reason never merits more than a wince from the person getting cut; if it was me, I’d be swearing a blue squeak – and a dribble of blood comes out. Totally unnecessary. If you want blood for your ritual, just bring along a box of agitated mice and get everyone to stick their thumb in it. You’ll be knee-deep in haemoglobin before you can say ‘tetanus shot’.

* AKA - Grendel