The secretary and I were the only two women working in this shop. There’s something about rubbing elbows with a bunch of guys with oil stains on their hands that can give you willies at night.
The secretary was deathly afraid of mice. We’re talking leap-over-chairs-on-your-way-to-the-parking-lot kind of afraid. This was not a good thing to reveal to our crew but there it was.
I wasn’t overly fond of them myself but determined not to admit to it. But they still tested me. I was in charge of checking in shipments – large and small – at our business and so one day found a small plastic bag on my desk. This wasn’t unusual and I flipped the bag to check the shipping tag.
A dead mouse was stapled inside the bag.
I dropped the gift and looked up to see our service manager and parts manager peering around the corner. The service manager threw his hands in the air.
“It wasn’t my idea!”
And the parts manager put his hands up, too. “I didn’t put that bag on your desk.”
I ignored Tweedledee and Tweedledum.
They didn’t harass me again. They were in search of more hysteria. But one day our secretary came back from lunch to find a brown lunch bag on her desk. Stapled shut. Shuddering with mystery.
She ran screaming to the break room, certain they had trapped a live mouse for her.
After shaking her hands and sobbing, she still refused to enter her office. So the service manager retrieved the bag from her office and brought it out, where he sliced off the top and set the trapped frog free.
Tweedledee and Tweedledum spent the afternoon freshening up the secretary’s desk before she’d return to work. Boss’s orders.
Something good did come out of it, though. Whenever the two guys got the idea to go in search of mice, they remembered four hours of scrubbing a desk and sat down until that idea passed.