Thursday, May 27, 2010


Hate is a strong word. While I may have over-used that term when I was a child, I try not to use it now. I really don’t hate anyone or anything. There are some people and things I like more than others, but I certainly don’t hate.

The one exception to this might be mice. I really really, really hate mice.  I’ve been stranded on the side of the road waiting for ‘the cowboy’ to rescue me from the mouse that got in my car. And once, when a mouse got in my house, I raced out and had to call my brother-in-law to go in and get my baby!

We didn’t go home until the mouse was gone.

Most recently, my wonderful daughter-in-law has come to my rescue.  She helped me clean the varmint out of the garage and  she bravely entered the mouse-ridden grain bin for horse feed. 

I really, really, really hate mice.

I even have trouble walking down the aisle of the hardware store where the mouse traps are kept.  I mean, they have pictures of mice (not photographs, just drawings, but still...)

I really, really, really hate mice.

Since two cats came to live with us, I don’t see mice very often, and that’s just the way I like it.

Did I mention that I really, really, really hate mice?

Because they are such dirty, horrid, little creatures, I was surprised to find them so prevalent in children’s literature. I mean really – help me understand why any author would want to introduce innocent children to these horrible, no-good, very bad, awful beasts?
Here is the evidence:

1. Does a Mouse have a Mommy?

Well, yes…but I wish it weren’t so. My world would be a far better place if all female mice had their tubes tied.

2. Cottonwool Colin

is one of 10 baby mice. The others were big, but Colin is very small. His mother wraps him in wool to protect him. It works, until a boy thinks he’s a snowball and throws him in a river.”

Now that’s a HAPPY ENDING, if I’ve ever heard one!

But no, Colin “survives many dangers and skips home feeling ‘large’.

It would be a great story line if Colin wasn’t a mouse!

3. Mouse Tail Moon offers “18 ‘mouse’ poems.”

Does presenting these rodents in rhyme make them more appealing?

NO, NO, a thousand times NO!

4. Santa Mouse is described this way: “Kids will love reading about Santa Mouse, Santa's furry, faithful little helper.”

Sure that’s what all parents want for their kids – toys that mice have crawled on. Yuck!

5. Marguerite’s Fountain is about “adorable mice living in a cathedral yard. Marguerite dances in HER fountain.”

The one thing I know about mice is that they’re pretty easy to be rid of with a five gallon bucket of water. Once they get in, there’s no gettin’ out. The dance is over, Marguerite.

But perhaps the most disturbing book I saw was this one:

6.  Is There a Mouse in the Baby’s Room?

It “stars a baby who has funny encounters with a larger-than-life, mischievous rodent, while parents discuss whether or not there’s a mouse in baby’s room.”

Those parents should be reported, I say. Enough 'discussing' -- get in there and save your baby.

Yikes, what is the world coming to?

Remember the good old days when the characters in children's books were bears, wolves, and trolls?  I'd take them over mice any day!


Grandma K said...

Don't get me going on mice! I hate, hate, hate etc. mice right along with you!
Mice crawling down the register of the mobile home as I nursed baby #2.
Wheat under my pillow after being away for a week....
Mice running in the ceiling tiles of the basement.
I demanded a guarantee that our house would be mouse proof. The builders no longer build houses and now I have mice! So don't give me any children's books about mice!
Let's start a protest! or maybe we could get a cultural grant to stop this nonsense.

Lisa said...

Mice are great subjects for books. I'm not as fearful of them as some people. Rats scare me a bit more.

Karyn said...

Hi Joey! Thanks for the comment on my blog - and the visit.

I am not 'afraid' of mice but I hate them - with a passion. We live in an old, poorly built house in the country. My husband is allergic to cats and we have 5 dogs (so no cats). Consequently, I am always battling mice.

I've not noticed the prevalance of mice in children's literature, but I have noticed it in 'artwork' for children. For that matter, they are featured in several 'collectible series' for adults.

I agree, though.....who wants to make kids see rodents as fun or cute? They are destructive, disgusting, devious, and disease ridden.

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