In the Year of our Lord 1975, I was known for three things.
My ability to simultaneously sing and act out all the characters in Run, Joey, Run.
My penchant for practical jokes.
And my dead pet mouse.
Given to me already dead by my friend Jill, my deceased pet took up residence in my jewelry box nestled atop the brand new watch given to me by my parents. The stacking order obviously showed which gift I preferred. Every morning for a week, I would carefully lift my stiff little friend out of his home and slip him into my denim purse so that he could accompany me to 7th grade. But I won’t go into those shenanigans here; you can read all about that in my upcoming children’s book, “If You Take A Dead Mouse to Middle School”.
By the weekend, the smell of my denim purse and the leather strap on my brand-new watch had begun to tell a tale of woe; time was running out for me and my guy. And so I did what any other preteen girl would have done in this situation.
I got a very very long piece of thread that was the same color as the carpet in our living room, tied one end of the thread around the mouse’s neck, put him under a chair, ran the thread to the other side of the room, hid behind the couch and waited. My Dad came in to watch TV and laid down on the couch. When he was good and relaxed, I started pulling the thread and the mouse began to cross the carpet.
Have you ever heard a grown man scream? It’s not a pretty sound.
Unless, of course, you’re a bored twelve-year old in the Year of our Lord 1975 with a dead mouse, a penchant for practical jokes, and a burning vengeance in your heart from singing “Daddy, please don’t, it wasn’t his fault, he means so much to me…”
Then, it’s beautiful.