Last time on My Life with Mice, I wrote about Tap Dancing Mice. This is how it began…
There I was, a younger Me, lying in bed, pondering life’s great mysteries and I heard it. On the ceiling above my bed was the rapid tappity-tap-tap of something. The fact that I lived in a farmhouse built in the 1880’s that made a lot of noises and had ghosts made for interesting occurences… but this noise, this tapping, was distracting. What could it be!?
I felt the hair on the back of my neck stand on end… as much as it could with it crammed between my neck and the pillow. I lay there, staring at the ceiling in the black of my room. What was UP there?! Surely that had to be a squirrel (even though we didn’t have squirrels in our yard)! A ghost? One of the barn cats? Gremlins? *gasp* Surely we didn’t have Gremlins in the attic?! I’d seen the movie. I KNEW what Gremlins were and the damage they caused, let alone just how dangerous they were! Didn’t I even have a plush Gizmo toy in my room? Had he somehow come to life and eaten after midnight? My poor, once-cute, little Mogwai! I listened for what seemed an eternity, the incessant tappity-tap-tap like the ticking of Poe’s, “The Tell-Tale Heart” below the floorboards… yet this was not under the floorboards, but above the ceiling….
I tossed. I turned. I wedged myself firmly between my fortress of pillows, pulling up the pile of blankets to my nose attempting to make myself invisible. As I stared at the ceiling and shivered with anxiety the images of wicked, green Gremlins gnawing on the old wiring and scraping their long fingernails over the drywall on my ceiling filled my head.
Dare I turn on the lights? What if there were Gremlins? The terrible tapping they tormented me with akin to what they would do to the top of my head as they tested my cranium like a ripe melon. Eventually I succumbed to sleep and drifted off with visions of nasty, green Gremlins crawling up in the space above my room in my head.
The next day, I mentioned to Mom the noises I heard from the attic space, and her reply was simply, “It’s just mice tap dancing in the attic.” Tap dancing mice? That was infinitely safer than Gremlins. I could live with that. So there you have it, I can blame my Mom for visions of tap-dancing mice above my living spaces. Thanks, Mom!