Monday, December 9, 2013

My Slightly Dramatized Tale of the Mouse in Wyatt’s Renovated ChickenCoop

On the trend of me being a piece of shit here is the rest of the mouse story as told by a different survivor of that horrific event. My friend Nick. He has a unique perspective on my life and this version more than does the story justice. Honestly, it's fucking hilarious.

My Slightly Dramatized Tale of the Mouse in Wyatt’s Renovated Chicken Coop
By Nick Castagno

As I was hitching a ride to New York from Florida with two friends, Lolo and Tags, we decided to make a one night stop to see my favorite Virginian, Wyatt.  Upon arrival Wyatt gave us a short tour of his farm, which included a renovated chicken coop and a creepy old barn, which I’m, pretty sure people were horribly murdered in.  Surprisingly no animals.

  After a quick tour Wyatt got us a few drinks and then with a troublesome look on his face dove into a detailed story of his recent extravaganza.  I could tell whatever story he was about to unfold upon us had been weighing his conscious for some time.  For days Wyatt had a menacing mouse that continually taunted him. My first thought was “Where’s Lennie when you need him?”.  For those of you who never achieved a 9th grade reading level, Lennie was a fictional literary character whose notable attributes included being huge, being retarded, and constantly being in trouble for asphyxiating small mice.  This mouse was a nuisance and according to Wyatt a rather clever elusive nuisance, for he had evaded capture for days.  Night after night Wyatt would be awoken by the little mouse’s scurrying around and morning after morning he would clean its shit up all over the floor.  Night after night and day after day. On one occasion Wyatt caught the little bastard in the act and finally scared him out of the renovated chicken coop.  The mouse quickly found his way back inside that evening. Living in a renovated chicken coop has its perks but pest prevention isn’t one of them.  I will continue to call his establishment or residence a “renovated chicken coop” because I want everyone to keep in mind how unselfconscious he is to live in a chicken coop but I also stress the word renovated because it sounds sophisticated hence somewhat redeeming his self worth, even if in the most condescending manner. And I just think its funny. Being dedicated to moderate cleanliness, Wyatt knew he must take drastic actions to eliminate this smug little bastard. 

 I was at the edge of my seat listening to the story and intrigued at its final resolve.  He continued. The mouse had grown quite bold. The mouse was sure that he was dealing with an incompetent nitwit who probably suffered from an undescended testicle. I’m guessing.  I’m not going to begin to try and dissect the intricate complexities of a mouse’s brain and what motivates it, very mysterious and vexing creatures really.  I have no idea where the mouse drew these conclusions.  The little brown mouse then ventured on top of Wyatt’s speaker where they locked eyes for the first time.  Wyatt made no hesitations.  He quickly grabbed his lighter and a compressed aerosol can of something flammable.  Unfortunately I can’t recall what the can was but I’m sure it would make it even more hilarious.  Wyatt then proceeded to spray the mouse with his homemade flamethrower.  If you ask me this is one of the most creative ways I’ve ever heard of to try and terminate a mouse.  It was also unsuccessful. The mouse quickly scampered off. Wyatt was rather content with the outcome. He assured himself that the lightly toasted mouse had learned its lesson and would no longer wreak havoc in the sanctuary of the renovated chicken coop.  But it was only moments later that he looked over and caught a condescending gaze from the singed mouse. There he stood in defiance licking his little paws and grooming his little head.  Once again Wyatt grabbed his unconventional weapon of choice. This time Wyatt slowly crept towards the mouse, flamethrower drawn and aimed.  He waited until he was only inches away from the critter.  Wyatt thought for a moment, never before had he been so close to a mouse in the wild. He paused and took in the moment. Up close he is kind of cute Wyatt thought to himself.  Perhaps it would be more civil to simply place him in the woods, Wyatt contemplated.  The mouse was beginning to melt him with his tiny paws and curious whiskers, totally unaware that a fireball of fury was about to envelope him. On second thought Wyatt decided to send this disease ridden creature and its beady little eyes straight to the pits of mouse Hell. At point blank range Wyatt unleashed an apocalyptal stream of orange and blue fire, the flames danced in his eyes while he roared a violent war cry. When the flames settled it took Wyatt a moment to catch his breath and gather his bearings. Wyatt later claimed there was a brief moment where he transcended out of his body.  But much to his astonishment the mouse was nowhere in sight. Once again he had escaped the clutches of death. 

 The mouse had not been seen for a few days, nor were there any signs of his usual night raids.  By that I mean Wyatt was not waking up with mouse shit all over him.  t wasn’t until one night after losing a very intense game of FIFA on Xbox360 that Wyatt looked up from his frustrations and there he was, mocking him and relishing in Wyatt’s painful and humiliating loss to Manchester United. Goddamn Rooney. Goddamn mouse. At this moment it became an obsession. Wyatt vowed to end this creature’s existence and rid this world of its intolerable presence. Wyatt once again reacted quickly but this time he abandoned his original idea of the homemade flamethrower. Wyatt agilely cornered the mouse in a desk drawer. He trapped the furry P.O.W. inside the wooden prison to await his sentencing. Knowing this mouse was significant in some form, Wyatt knew it did not deserve a typical mouse execution. Wyatt first had visions of torching the entire renovated chicken coop but quickly determined that would be detrimental to his original cause. A crucifixion seemed highly favorable for quite some time. Wyatt then realized the effort required to accomplish such a complex execution, due to the tiny scale would take some very detailed craftsmanship. He might even have to outsource the production of the miniature nails. I told you this man is a dreamer, a pioneer per se. Wyatt did not have the time nor patience for such a meticulously detailed death method. Well, he definitely had the time but certainly not the patience. Wyatt’s ingenuity and craftiness led him to bleach. Wyatt slightly jarred the drawer open and fired ounce after ounce of bleach at the cornered defenseless mouse. He then closed the drawer and waited. In theory this would create clouds of concentrated toxic fumes. A mini gas chamber if you will.  After ten minutes Wyatt checked back. Much to his dismay the mouse was spry as ever. He then poured significantly more bleach into the drawer. 

This time Wyatt patiently waited several hours. When he returned to gather the remains of his fellow nemesis he was greeted by two lively beady eyes starring helplessly at him. Damn! Damn this all to Hell. Wyatt contemplated his options. He eventually came to the conclusion that due to the fact that the mouse had been through a triathlon of death, killing it with a mouse trap would still prove to be a unique death considering the circumstances it took the mouse to get there. Wyatt then put several peanut butter baited traps in the drawer and closed it.  

Finally, I thought to myself. I must admit Wyatt is quite an impressive orator with a fabulously sadistic vernacular. Needless to say, not only myself but Tags and Lolo we’re completely entranced by his tale. I felt as though it was I who had been crossed by this insufferable vermin. I found myself wishing for a bloody resolution. We were all too eager to hear how the mouse’s final demise was discovered. Perhaps he heard the snap of the trap or perhaps he waited and eventually the pungent odor of decaying rodent crept through to his nostrils.  Wyatt then continued his story. “It’s been a little more than a day and I still haven’t checked that drawer”. He pointed to the drawer and all of our attention followed. I was taken aback for a minute, confused and partially disappointed. So the story had no definitive end? And who the hell casually lies around with a half tortured mouse in their room while entertaining guests?

 But then my disappointment was erased. I realized I had the honor and privilege of being a part of this timeless saga, one of rivalry and lust. I could witness the triumphant look of satisfaction on Wyatt’s face as we ascertained the beast’s slain corps. Tags Lolo and I hastily rushed towards the small coffin. Certainly by now the mouse has entangled himself in one of the several irresistibly peanut butter smothered traps.  And if not, the fumes have in all likelihood melted his lungs.  All four of us slowly drew back the drawer with heightened anticipation.  A gasp.  The little bastard is still alive.  He pulled a G.D. Rasputin on us.  Lolo’s maternal instincts immediately set in.  Without hesitation she surprises the fuck out of all of us and grabs the mouse.  Wild card.  I say without hesitation but I also mean without much thought and with a slight shade of stupidity.  At that moment all Hell breaks loose.  “Kill it!”. “It has diseases!”.  “It’s gonna bite you!”.  “Killllll it!!!”.  Lolo then realizes the predicament she’s in and starts to fuckin panic.  We weren’t helping.  Our cautionary warnings and cries for blood not only induced her panic but rapidly increased its level of intensity.  She ran towards the door to expedite its release into the wild.  “No!” Wyatt hollered, “Kill it!”.  Thinking incredibly fast, as I usually do, I snatched up a mousetrap and then threw it at the mouse.  It was as if everything slowed down and was in high def.  The mousetrap flew through the air slowly rotating toward the mouse’s head.  A quick death, I thought to myself.  My breath stopped and my heart stood still.  It was just like the final stand in “300” when King Leonidas threw his spear at Xerxes...and with the same result.  I missed.  Lolo realizing that she was putting herself in harms way, not just from the mouse but also from her fellow companions, dropped the mouse.  In doing so she denounced her entangling alliance and was once again considered Switzerland.  We were outraged at its release.  She then tried to calm us all down claiming she single handedly resolved the unnecessarily drawn out feud between Wyatt and the mouse.  
I don’t know if it was the booze or her ADHD but clearly she wasn’t paying attention to the part where Wyatt already shooed it out once before.  In fact this was a very pivotal and detrimental part of the story.  It was these previously failed actions that led to the ultimate decision to terminate the pest so as to put a permanent end to its nuisance, thus resolving the greatest problem in Wyatt’s life.  And even if releasing the mouse outside the renovated chicken coop was a viable option that would prevent its return, it no longer provided the utility to quench our blood lust.  Only blood could vanquish its wrongs and once again restore peace to Wyatt’s mind and spirit and renovated chicken coop.  The mouse’s intolerable behavior could not be so simply forgotten.  Its debt must be paid, preferably in tiny mice tears. Wyatt was violated by an inferior species.  In my opinion mice everywhere should be grateful that he singled out the perpetrator and not declared an eternal war on the entire species, which he legally had the right to do.  It was never said but I believe much animosity was harvested towards Lolo by all of us that day.  All of us.  I ashamedly admit to my own subtle resentment and a sense of betrayal.  Two days later I received this text.

Wyatt:  There’s a dead stinking rat somewhere in these walls, the bleach must’ve got him hahahaha

Me: Haha probably a slow horrible death I’m sure  

Wyatt: We can only hope

And just like that the feelings of resentment and betrayal were lifted.  No more seemingly irrational aggressive verbal outbreaks caused by pent up feelings of frustration and distrust.  And for those of you who aren’t familiar with North American vermin, a dead rat smells exactly like a dead mouse, relatively speaking.  The decaying odor itself is interchangeable nay identical.  The only difference is, due to the North American rat’s size the stench tends to permeate out further than that of the mouse.  So readers make no mistake, when Wyatt said “dead stinking rat”, he really meant “dead stinking mouse”.  Now I know some of you are doubting the mouse’s death due to Wyatt’s wording and sentence structure.  So we shall entertain the idea of its survival while we dissect his text message.  He did distinctly say “rat”.  Why?   Perhaps by exaggerating the smell of the dead mouse Wyatt wished to poetically encapture its seemingly unreal tale and embellished existence.  To help immortalize it if you will.  Or perhaps Wyatt exaggerated the mouse in his own head because only an abnormally large and evil mouse could have bested him time and time again.  A simple coping method so as to keep his ego intact. Its decay confirming Wyatt’s suspicions of this being a radical anomaly by having a stronger than normal sent that only evil can permeate.  And to tangent from the coping theory, it could have been that this incident had caused him so much distress to even imagine going through such a traumatic experience again would simply make existence itself unfathomable.  This could lead to night terrors, wetting the bed, and even a nervous breakdown. This coping method, although similar, is constructed by the mind to avoid long-term emotional damage as opposed to preserving the ego.   Both options are possible and in both theories the mouse’s inflated odor is the key indicator to its abnormality, once again leading us back as to why Wyatt chose to use “rat”.  The incentive behind the coping method remains irrelevant.  Or perhaps due to the small size of his renovated chicken coop, the stench per cubic inch would have been equivalent to that of a dead rat in a normal residence thus encouraging him to make a proper analogy that one could relate to on a more personal level, drawing empathy from the reader.  Or maybe and most likely Wyatt is just a lazy fuck and texted “rat” because typing mouse would have required too much physical exertion.  Now some of you may not be swayed by any of these probable hypotheses.  Some of you have clearly grown far too attached to the mouse and refused to accept that its tiny little body is unleashing the vengeful odor, which now haunts Wyatt’s renovated chicken coop.  You choose to believe that some huge ugly rat has crawled into Wyatt’s renovated chicken coop and coincidentally died.  It’s easy to be detached from that image.  I get it.  Who cares about another dead rat?  Rat is even used as a derogatory word to insult someone.  It is pretty much unanimously agreed upon that rats are to be despised.  Except by some radical forms of Hinduism in India.  There, rats are regarded as the sacred and powerful reincarnations of holy men.  And it is due to these beliefs that these sanctions of religions are even more primitive than not only the rest of the world but even within India they are considered primitive.  Silly mystics.  But the last image you want in your head is that of little Fievel with an arrhythmic heartbeat and shallow breathing, slowly taking his last breath.  I get it.  Some of you may even go as far as to say that Wyatt is a goddamn liar.  Well those of you with this ridiculous notion better bite your tongues.  The only thing that man has ever lied about was once eating the last Oreo and liking his grandma.  He did however, once unintentionally lie about meeting Wesley Snipes.  Turns out it was just a really really black black dude.  Looking back on it, that was rather awkward.  But other than that Wyatt’s word has proven to be unwavering, to bear the same weight as that of Cezar Millan’s.  I can’t believe there is any support for that group.  That faction clearly has underlying motives that they choose to remain hidden from the general public.  Anyways probability and rationality is stacked unfavorably against the mouse’s survival. But who knows?

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The Mouse War. Part Four.

The other morning I woke up with an email from my Mother warning me to not describe the Mouse War events in such a brutal fashion, so I don't seem like such a psychopath. I found this quite inspirational and immediately sat at my desk to start pecking out Part Four of the story.
I would like to address the claims that my actions in this War may appear overly cruel, sadistic even. Although, I did bottle months of rodent fury, and I do describe my role in the war as if I'm Charlie fucking Manson, in reality I am not a cruel person. I have, however, written and will continue to write these events not from the view of an impartial bystander, but from that of a semi paranoid, only moderately rational, middle class hillbilly, driven Mad from months of constant, close quarters rodent exposure. At any point in the war when I captured a mouse, I tried to dispose of it in a quick and merciful fashion. Unfortunately, some of these disposals were rather clumsy and some of the mice may have suffered very slightly more than necessary. I want to emphasize that this was not a result of my sadism, merely the fact that I am inept at vermin disposal. Each scenario happened under different circumstances and each mouse death resulted from a quick reaction, although with perhaps a semi-unintelligible rationale (in hindsight). In order to avoid too many death threats from PETA, I will describe my thought process in each mouse disposal and illustrate how and why I thought it would be effective...Amidst the meat of chaos of course.

While this strange and long winded disclaimer may seem unnecessary, as the full absurdity of the Mouse War begins to unfold, it will begin to make more sense. If you're in PETA stop reading now and save me the fucking grief.

Thank You.

Part IV 

After the unfathomable triumph I achieved over the rodents, they backed off. Like they had initially done, I became cocky. Catching that rat was luck more than anything, but I didn't find any more shit and the new-found cleanliness allowed me to continuously revel in the victory. In what I assumed was a glorious post-rodent era, I quickly shed the tiny amount of discipline I had built up in keeping the Coop clean. I was a Fool and would eventually find out that this presumed peace was really just the eye of a hellish, Storm of mouse shit.

They came back with a vengeance and a plan. I was in the Coop one day trying to fix a speaker which had mysteriously stopped working. Searching for the problem, I examined the back of it to discover the wire was chewed all the way through in two different spots. I immediately knew who perpetrated this moderately heinous crime, those little sons of bitches. They were back. Who knew Mice were capable of what I assume was intentional sabotage? I was, however, still relaxed and sane from the rodent free golden era, so I replaced the wire and managed to forget about it. In the meantime, the Coop fell back to its inevitably crumby state. Laying in my couch/bed at night, I began incessantly hearing the creepy and enraging sounds of their Squeaks and Scurries. I knew it was only a matter of time before they revealed themselves. After the speaker wire sabotage, I assumed they would keep to the low-key subtly infuriating bullshit, instead they opted for a direct confrontation. It was yet another sign of the immense disrespect and incomprehensible hatred the Mice had for me.

The night the Taunter first showed his face will haunt my nightmares forever. No man has ever witnessed such demonic fucking behavior from a mouse. I knew after that fateful encounter that the mutually endless trans-species loathing between the Mice and I would last Forever. Next to my t.v. stand in the Coop sat a large sub woofer. The sub sat directly in front of a hole in the wall which I suspected was how the Mice would get into my room. One night I was in the Coop watching t.v. and minding my own business, like I always tried to do, despite their constant antagonizing and suddenly heard a loud Squeak. My gaze shifted downward and I saw a beady, black-eyed little brown mouse sitting on top of the sub, facing me. He just sat there, motionless and was staring directly at me. I couldn't believe my eyes. This unprecedented defiance was maddening.

Sitting on my coffee table was a spray bottle of rubbing alcohol, which I used as a hillbilly hand-wash and general sanitizer for the Coop. I eyed the bottle of makeshift fuel and a lighter, sitting on the coffee table next to it, grabbed them both and crept toward the mouse, who continued to stare me down, undeterred. I got about five feet away, raised the improvised flamethrower and hoped to scare the mere fuck out of him with a fairly harmless mini-fireball. I flicked the lighter, sparked a baby flame to life and squeezed the red plastic trigger of the rubbing alcohol bottle. The semi-explosive liquid shot forth, hit the flame and launched a ball of holy fire in the mouse's direction. The flames didn't reach as far as where he sat (because I didn't want to burn my sub) but after the fireball burned up in a flash of weak heat, the son of a little bitch was gone.I maintained my crouched stance and flicked another Flame to life, just in case he was still lurking about; my fingers tensed on the trigger as I scanned the area around the t.v. stand. He did not reappear. The smile of a contented pyromanic crept across my face and I thought I had again prevailed over my audacious, furry little nemeses. I was also satisfied that my scare tactic would prevent further rodent defiance, as certainly no animal could defy those with control over the Flame.

I underestimated the vermin's ability to overcome it's fear of a violent burning death and he would reappear for battle the next day, but this time he would prove undeterred by the Flame and apparently recommitted to my mental collapse. Unknown to me at the time, this turned out to be Day One of a gruesome, soul crushing three day showdown...

Monday, March 18, 2013

Ozzy & The Unnatural Hillbilly

Finally, I found the balls to sit down and write. I haven't done anything too bizarre and what energy I've mustered lately was used to work on The Mouse War. I've been working hard peddling pesto and haven't had time for much else. I have, however, been traveling all around this city, from Venice to Beverly Hills to Pasadena to Burbank and experienced some of the funky, unexpected shit this city has to offer.

Fake New York taxis at Warner Bros Studio
One day I literally saw a hobo whip his dirty pink dick out and start pissing into the road and the next I met a guitarist from Nirvana (Pat Smear). Thursday, I was at Fox Studios setting up a market and realized I was parked in a reserved spot for Jake Johnson from the T.V. show New Girl. I'd never heard of him, but he's apparently some famous person, which makes stealing his spot slightly worth mentioning. Tee hee.

The kitchen, where I pack and clean the supplies for markets, is in the alley between Beverly and Rodeo Drive, so when I'm not at a market, I'm working in Beverly Hills. The alley is also where the the valet parking is for all the high end shoppers; so when I'm working I regularly spot Rolls Royce, Bugatti's, Maserati's and just about every other absurd, exotic car you could ever think of. And of course I get to see the filthily rich folks who drive them.

 In this part of town, the Snoot's all walk around with an easily identifiable and thoroughly infuriating Moneybag sneer. Seeing the worst of them strut around with a bloated sense of overwhelming self importance is rather fucking hilarious and sad. Due to an instinctual fondness for spite, the most horrid of the Snoots have forced my personality to revert it's inordinately Hillbilly state. Amidst all the elegance of Beverly Hills, I find deranged and peculiar joy in walking down Rodeo Drive, sweaty, unshaven, in a dirty plaid shirt and jeans and blasting great folk music, like this, in my headphones. I apparently get such delight from being an outsider that I've even subconsciously acquired a thick, inexplicable Southern accent. I have never accidentally said the word "y'all" so much in my entire life. And now when I tell people I'm from Virginia, it now comes dripping out of my mouth like fucking molasses,

Beverly Hills, early as fuck in the morning.
"I just moved he-uh from Vuhhjiinya."

And when I try to fight the involuntary Southern vernacular, it gets worse. Then I become more frustrated and ultimately snowball down a steep slope of lunacy.




Followed by an ear splitting rebel yell,
"WOOOO WOOOOOP," which I cannot help but to emit with an instinctual ferocity. 

Needless to say, as I walk down Rodeo Drive loudly soliloquizing this vernacular struggle against my Hillbilly subconscious, the Snoots and Tourists are equally horrified. I, on the other hand, bask in the depraved hilarity and have embraced my apparently demented backwoods roots with open arms.

This past weekend, in Pasadena, I was try to sell an old woman a jar sun-dried tomatoes imported from Italy. She asked me why she would want tomatoes from Italy since they technically originated in the Americas'.
Pasadena Farmers Market

"Ehh, because they taste better?" I guessed.

"You can't find tomatoes anywhere in THIS country that taste that good?! That's absolutely ridiculous!"

 I tried to tell her that it wasn't my job to pick the tomatoes, but before I could say finish she started screaming,


As a liberal, I interpreted this accusation as proof that my white trash transformation must nearly be complete. Then, there was the incident with the fat, gay British man at a Hollywood farmers market, who informed me that I had a Southern accent he "could listen to all day long," which disturbingly confirmed my suspicions.

There has, however, been some other forms entertainment. Earlier this week I was in Beverly Hills working and was looking for a Hispanic guy named Martin (mar-teen), to ask him something. I was walking down the alley and came up behind a running Jaguar, blasting music, and saw Martin coming up the alley toward me. He was carrying bags for an impressive looking man with long, dark hair. I stood by the car as the man walked up, glanced at me, opened the passenger door and got in. He looked familiar, but I was more or less zoned out and although he seemed important, I honestly wasn't paying too close attention. Martin handed him the bags and the Jaguar sped off.

This Crow appeared on the street I live on the day after I saw Ozzy...
“Who was that ?” I asked Martin
“Uzzy” he responded, in a thick Spanish accent.



It took a second to process, then it hit me, 'Good God...' I realized, I just came face to face with the Prince of fucking Darkness, Ozzy Osbourne.

I am now going to chug 5 or 6 Redbulls and work on finishing Part IV of The Mouse War. Those of you who already know what happens know that shit is about to get real...

Monday, March 11, 2013

The Mouse War. Part Three.

After the mouse charged me down, bitched me, and officially contested me for psychological ownership of the Coop, he became a rather cocky son of a bitch.

Night after night, I spilled food, vacuumed what I could, failed obviously, and began to encounter him constantly. He was annoyingly audacious and became increasingly more so with each human sighting. It felt as if each time I saw, and allowed him to live, it boosted his rodent defiance and assurance that I was a big helpless pussy. I probably just need more self esteem, but for some reason dealing with this squeaking, beady-eyed foe made me unreasonably furious. I sensed that every time we met he could feel the waves of anger emanating from my body, and by showing his face with such blatant consistence he was intentionally trying to drive me insane.  I continued to wait for the poison to work for a few weeks but it never did. I even mixed some delicious trail mix with the poison in a desperate ploy to trick the mouse into picking the wrong, fatal nut. They picked each and every nut, m&m and raisin out and seemingly took not one pellet of green poison. God damn it.

My sanity had begun a notable decline when I had my first victory of the War. I was eating a family size bag of Pop chips one day and finished the entire thing, leaving only a few unworthy crumbs behind. I'm an admitted glutton, but those eating those chips is like chasing the fucking dragon, you literally cannot stop until they're gone; then you psychotically crave and fantasize about them for days. Being the moderate slob that I am, I left the large, empty bag of pops chips on the floor all the next day as I went about my business. When I got back to the coop that evening, I started to watch tv when I heard a strange crumpling noise. I squinted my eyes in suspicion and looked in the usual rodent hot zones. Nothing. So I kept watching tv. I heard the noise again and looked around, again. Nothing, again. I sat there listening, baffled. The crumpling was consistent but barely audible. Then I happen to glance down into the upright bag of pops sitting on the floor by my feet. And who the fuck do I see down there? A crumb eating, pestilent little mouse bastard. He looked up at me and must've known the severity of his situation. Apparently as much a glutton as I, he greedily climbed down into the Pop crumb heaven, too blinded by the orgasmic deliciousness of the crumbs to consider an escape route. He didn't know my arrival would mean his certain demise. My lips twisted into a deranged smile. A feeling of what must've been schadenfreude washed over my body and I snapped the bag closed. With neither a word nor a hesitation, I stood up, threw open the door of the Coop and marched barefoot out into the cold. I walked down to the edge of our pond. Patches of ice floated on the surface. I was sure this would be as quick a death as any. I hesitated. The mouse sat very still in the bag. He was unsure of his fate, but I know he was confident that my overwhelming dimwittedness would lead to an eventual escape. Probably even soon enough so he could go spite shit those Pop crumbs onto my pillow; cooking up his own demented little recipe of vermin shadenfreude. This enraged me. I decided to get it over with. I held onto the un-open end of the bag, jerked my arm back and flung the mouse and remaining crumbs high up and out over the icy water.

As the mouse flew up and began arced downward, I screamed,

"I hope you enjoyed the crumbs you SON OF A FUCKING BITCH!"

He kerplunked an impossible distance from shore. I watched as he tried to swim and slow down after a few aimless feet. I turned and walked back into the Coop. It was done.

I hoped this loss would devastate the mouse community and they would succumb to their misery by indulging on those ever enticing green pellets. Unfortunately, the deceased mouse's friends and family vowed revenge and would persevere in the struggle against me for months to come. I had one victory, but the real showdown had just begun.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The Mouse War. Part Two.

       And so it began. I continued to drop food, and I continued to find shit. Should I have been held partially responsible? Should I simply have stopped throwing food at my face, getting it plastered all over the walls and floor and incessantly enticing the rodent population? Nah. Old, slovenly habits die-hard; and living up to my pledge to never negotiate with terrorists of any species, there was no fucking way I’d adjust my crumb spilling ways because of some soulless, disease-spreading devil creatures. Naturally, I could've just been a slightly cleaner person and easily contributed to saving the life of one of God's innocent, yet filthy creations, but I didn't want to get AIDS from my pillow toilet and I ranked its death as less of an inconvenience than my tidiness.
       At first I only put out the poison. Supposedly they would take a bunch of it, feed it to their families and they would all die a tragic and hilarious death. Psh, if only these mice had been quite so fucking stupid as to feed their children the bright green pellets of foul smelling chemical poison out of a yellow, wedge shaped box with a colorful cartoon picture of a mouse dying a horrific death on the side. Naturally I was too lazy to actually go buy mousetraps and my parents insisted the poison worked, so I played the waiting game. The poison had been out a few weeks and I had found lots of shit, but I maintained hope that the poison just took a little time to slowly permeate and eat away the body of each mouse family member before each of their excruciating demise.
       Then the Tauntings began. I was sitting on my couch watching TV when I heard the familiar scurrying noise and saw a furry grey bullet shoot from under the TV stand, right passed my feet and underneath the couch. It was brazen, bold and infuriating. I was shocked. Wasn’t this tiny creature, who is inferior to me in every way, supposed to be horrified at the mere thought of the chance that I know it exists? Much less to run directly at me and hide underneath the couch I was sitting on? My eyes grew wide, face grew red and spit flew in slow motion from my twisted, snarling lips. I stood up in a brief and confused rage. I quickly realized that without any of the right tools, my only attack strategy was to immediately light the couch on fire. With my usual anger coping mechanisms failing to respond properly, I eyed the highly inflammable couch with disturbing temptation. I licked my lips in an uncontrollable bloodlust, and flicked my red lighter, over and over. I did hate that son of a bitch uncomfortable couch, especially since it housed criminals and allowed itself be shit up-in. Not to mention the fucking mouse, who at this point was basically shitting directly on my head i.e. near my pillow, then coming back to shit on it again, charging at me as I sat there looming above him like a giant helpless fool. But it sounded like a hassle and I was enticed by the option to sit back down, eventually. I stood for a few more moments breathing heavily and looking confused, then I sat back down and forgot he was even there.
       So I conceded the first battle. I had been utterly embarrassed and thoroughly disrespected, by a mouse.

Monday, March 4, 2013

The Mouse War. Part One.

      I forgot that a couple months ago, I had begun to write down the events of the Mouse War, which horrifically unfolded between January and August of 2012. It was on my home computer, so I got my brother Jack to send me what I'd already written, and I started to recount the rest of the story as a side project. I will release it as mini-series randomly interspersed between my other LA/ life related posts.
        In the year after I stopped college and worked from home, I decided to move into a separate building on our property, which once housed chickens. It was a chicken coop; but years ago my mom renovated one section and turned it into a livable space/guest house. Once I moved home from school, I knew right away I'd need the extra, conveniently detached space. So I emptied and cleaned out the coop, painted the walls, wired some Internet, and put in a huge couch and tv. It was and still is badass. There were, however, slight drawbacks. Aside the severe mold, crumbling walls, leaky roof and tree branch growing through a window, there was also a thriving community of arrogant and filthy mice. In a battle that would span nearly seven months, the mice used a miniature and evil cunning to engage me in a hellish, sanity testing death match. These fucking Secret of Nimh-esque rodents literally even made a unprecedented, cross species allegiance with a visiting Floridian stripper, who made a shocking, yet failed attempt to save a mouse antagonizer from the clutches of a slow, bleach induced demise. Ultimately though, after months of bloody struggle, I would prevail over the vermin scum and their stripper ally. Here is what happened in the true, non-embellished story of the Mouse War.
       It all began when the Chicken Coop, where I had lived a few short weeks, started to accrue various specks and crumbs of food. This was due to either my slovenly eating habits, or malnourished Virginia hillbilly gypsies breaking in to snack while I wasn’t there, most likely the former. The first sighting both frightened and disturbed me; it was a small grey blur barely noticeable speeding along the intersection of Floor and Wall. I knew it may have been cause for concern, but I assumed it was probably standard occurrence for someone living where the previous tenants were a bunch of filthy chickens and their satanic rooster overlords (A story for another time...). So I ignored the rodent invasion, hoping for both his and my sake that he wouldn’t show his face again. Little did I know, I should have torched the coop then and there. But I would have to learn my lesson the hard way in an uphill battle against a filthy vermin devil.
       I now regret that I didn't immediately involve Agent Orange after seeing the first suspicious black crumb. I discovered it as I did my weekly clean up of the coop. And yes, Michael J. Fox eating eating a bowl of chicken noodle soup off a paint mixer would spill less than I, but I was at least diligent about maintaining a moderately respectable level cleanliness. I took off all of the cushions to vacuum underneath when I noticed a curious number of little black crumbs. Upon closer inspection I realized they weren’t crumbs at all but little pellets of shit, mouse shit. And even worse, the highest concentration of the shit had accumulated under the cushion where my pillow usually lie. I was basically sleeping with my head eight inches from a pile of shit, on what essentially was a god damned rat toilet. After I grasped the level of extreme filth in which I'd been obliviously living, I was infuriated the a disease-ridden invader had defiled my sacred Coop. But I'd recently read Buddhist advice that “To lose patience is to lose the battle,” so I regained my composure, repressed the teeth clenching rage, vacuumed up the shit and went inside my house to get some mouse poison. Game on motherfucker. If only I had known this was only the beginning of an engagement that would lead to the gradual, merciless backslide of my sanity through the Seven Levels of Hell.


Thursday, February 28, 2013

Mexican Wrestling, Ellen, & An Old Jew

"There's always something to write about."
"What are you gonna do, then?
I pointed at my bottle and picked it up.
"How are you gonna make it?" he asked.
"Seems like I've heard that question all my life."

Ham On Rye -Charles Bukowski

A strong, non watered down Makers Mark and a potent batch of pineapple express fought valiantly against the motivation I mustered. I finally clicked off of Facebook. There were no more notifications. I needed to write, no excuses. For motivation I bought a wireless keyboard for my iPad, but it is broken. The y is switched with the z and most of the punctuation are switched with umlauts. What the fuck - not even a question mark. I've been torn about what to write for this post, and what to write about for the blog in general. It started on an unexpected high with days of road tripping and nights of incessant bourbon chugging and bluegrass listening. Nate accidentally brought a black whore back to our room for Christ's sake. Compared to that level of unfathomable ridiculousness, what I've been doing in LA has seemed unexciting and too boring to write about. But thats just pessimistic bullshit. Now that I have a little money and some options, I can set myself in the right direction. This blog is a fairly accurate representation of my life's status, and it has been floundering. In search of a direction, and partially inspired by having just read Bukowski's Ham On Rye, I figured I could start calling myself a writer, and well, actually pursue writing. Obviously that means continuing this blog indefinitely, but perhaps I may even try my hand at writing a screenplay. How hard can it be? Curious about it, and having never read one before, I bought and read the screenplay for Lincoln. My suspicions, of course, proved be true, as it seemed about as hard to write as a children's picture book.

I never called myself a writer. Even the decision to keep track of this journey was an afterthought. In December all I knew was that my friends and I drank in unpredictable excess, we were going to Vegas and I had the opportunity to string the inevitable decadence into a blog. Events transpired, absurdity ensued and despite my uncertainty, I managed to piece it all together in a fairly sensical manner. Now I'm in Los fucking Angeles, the practical epicenter of writing culture and opportunity in the United States. Calling myself a writer seems a logical step. An initial worry, though, especially with a cache of potential travel money, was my uncertainty that I could find enough to write about here. Then I remembered something I wrote in a previous post;

"Should this beautiful, momentous wave crash in California, drain painfully into the Pacific and suck my newfound metaphysical Glory into the bowels of the perpetually numb? Fuck That. I'm staying on board, riding this westward blowing whim and continuously billowing the sails of my life with unimaginable hilarity and fortuitous adventure." -The Impasse

So I decided to stop being a negative bitch and find some shit to do, some weird, funny shit. Using Google, I quickly found a list of ways to explore some of the most ridiculous things that L.A. has to offer. It includes a violent women's roller derby, free prophetic readings at the Pasadena International House of Prayer, a Mexican wrestling circus with nudity and midgets (announced by Drew Carey and Fred Armison), a nightclub called the California Institute of Abnormal Arts described as "equal parts bad acid trip and carnival sideshow of atrocity," a massive 90's mashup party, a drive in theater that plays The Goonies, the L. Ron Hubbard Scientology exhibition, an lhilarious Mexican drag show, and so on... Theres even a bar, only 2 miles away, that has fucking turtlez races on Thursday nights.

To spite my inevitable indecisiveness and bad attitude about having no good writing material, I am dedicated from this point on to visiting at least one of these ridiculous places or events per week. This means, beside from working, looking for a car and saving, all of which are basically fucking terrible, Im going to use my time embracing LA's oddities and filling my literary coffers with some great, bizarre material. In search of consistency, I can now just describe the absurd thing I visited and include any of the good nitty gritty life shit thats worth mentioning. For example, I haven't yet mentioned how last Wednesday I worked at a farmers market in Burbank, on a fake street at Warner Bro's Studios; and next week, Ellen, who films her show at the studio, is coming down to the market to do a segment. So in a funny twist, I may get to be on the Ellen show.

I also got my marijuana card. Last week I skated down to Venice Boardwalk and was persuaded by unshaven hippy in bright green scrubs. He assured me the process was simple. After showing me to a decrepit, sandy floored back room, I met a droopy old Jewish doctor, who I had to convince of my ailments. He looked like the deflated teen from the anti drug commercials. It didn't take much convincing. Then I followed green scrubs on his longboard farther down the boardwalk. We stopped at a second place and I went in alone. A thickly accented, large breasted Eastern European woman asked me for forty dollars and handed me a "doctor approved certification". She was seedy, but pleasant enough. I followed a the hippy down the street to yet another building where a friendly old black man sat guard, at the bottom of some stairs. Getting the nod, I walked up. Before I knew it, was basking in the admittedly semi-erotic glory of my first legitimate herbal medicine.

The next post I will have definite certifiable absurdity report.