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Never Underestimate a Mouse

April 30th, 2010

My family used to have an ongoing award of Blitherer of the Month for whoever committed the most blithering nonsense. Occasionally the competition became so extreme we had to give the award on a weekly basis.

If the competition still existed I would easily have it nailed for this month. When I am tired and confronted with more than I can accomplish, sometimes I choose spontaneous shortcuts. Usually this is ok. But last week I tripped over one particular annoying bucket one too many times and I solved the problem, sort of.

This bucket held some leftover seed starting mix, and a couple of years ago an astonishingly diligent mouse piled a bunch of cilantro seeds on top of the mix. Carefully removing cilantro seeds was low on my priority list and the bucket has been uselessly in the way ever since. I finally got fed up with it.

I dumped the whole thing into the muck tub that holds the recycled potting mix from the poor plants I never got planted last year when I got sick. I figured I already have cilantro self-seeding all over the place so weeding a few more would be no big deal. Then I continued mixing the recycled mix half and half with fresh potting mix as I pot things up this year.

Well. The mouse had apparently also collected a lot of sunflower seeds and peas. It looked like quite a lot of them as I churned it into the rest of the stuff in the tub. As I used the moistened mix the next few days I found sprouting peas, which I have plopped into little pots. Like about two dozen of them so far.

The sunflowers I simply uprooted until the warm days made everything start germinating. Including all the bazillions of grass seeds I had not even seen. I now start each morning by weeding wee sprigs of grass from the most recently potted plants. Otherwise I would end up growing little pots of sod.

This is the most nonsensical thing I have done in a long time. Perplexed at how to deal with the remaining mix that is now a tangle of sprouts, I threw it in the bottom of the big pots I put tomatoes in last night, announcing to them, “Have some salad!” Then I put non-seedy mix on top of that, deep enough it should be the end of the problem.

I wryly informed my husband I should put up a sign where I pot the plants, “Never underestimate human stupidity.” He laughed and said I should put up a sign, “Never underestimate a mouse.”

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