Friday, April 20, 2012

Penis v. Mouse

I know, the very title conjures up uncomfortable images of duals between a phallus and a rodent. And there's really no way of knowing who would win because there are just so many factors to consider.

But I digress. Can you digress before you've actually started? Ponder that while we talk genitals and garage-dwellers. Before we start, you need back story.

The back story on body parts and their proper names:

I was raised by a nurse. But not just any nurse, a labor and delivery nurse. And having been raised by one, and having met a hundred zillion of her coworkers over the years, and having been the live-in nanny to an OBGYN, I can tell you that staring at vaginas all day for a living, for your job that you must go to every day and be paid to do, does something to a person.

I don't even know what, exactly, but it DOES something. Your job encompasses that which people never talk about or discuss in public and often not even with their good friends (although I don't know who those people are, because if you can't talk vagina with your best friends, then what the hell are they your best friends for?). So you deal in the taboo and then you have no concept of taboo and then you just talk about inappropriate things all the time to anyone who will listen.

But despite your inability to know what is and isn't ok to discuss in mixed company, you have a healthy respect for body parts and their names. We were raised with the proper names for everything and knew all about the sex stuff from an early age.

(Disclaimer: "Vagina" is still one of the top 5 worst words in the English language)

Now let's talk about mice:

After college I moved to Boston and lived in the most perfectly awful apartment with lots of mice. I didn't have the heart to kill them all and it also seemed impossible just given their sheer numbers, so I invented a humane method for getting rid of them. Every night before bed I would pull the garbage can over to the counter, put food in the bottom of the bag, and grease up the sides with olive oil. Every morning there were three or four wiggling mice in the bottom. I grabbed the bag (untied), walked out back to the dumpster and tossed the bag in.

But mice removal and picture hanging are two (of many) things that you do when you're single because there's no one else around to do them. Not so when you're married. You can relegate all that shit to it's proper place - with yo MAN. And I didn't realize that one day I'd get to hand off chores like that, but it's totally a reason to get married. He no longer has to buy gifts, RSVP to weddings, make social plans, or remember to call his family back because I'll do all that. In return, I don't have to take the garbage out, parallel park in tiny spots, or remove rodents.

So, long story short, I was raised by a medical professional and no longer deal in mice. But that's just me, some peeps had the opposite experience.

The main story...

I have a friend - who totally has a blog of her own that I could link to, but she MAY not want me outing her self-admitted prudishness, so I will keep her anonymous - who is squeamish about things of the body part nature. The "P" and "V" words are NOT uttered around that house - everyone just has "PRIVATES!" Boys have "boy privates" and girls have "girl privates." I ruthlessly make fun of her for this absolute insanity and also threaten to steal her children for an afternoon and give them a good schooling. I also tell her that she's going to have kids who think you can get pregnant from a toilet seat, but she assures me that the state sponsored sex ed classes they get at school will kick in before it gets that far.

As you can imagine, Charlotte is WELL aware of what girls and boys have and will talk about it at will. Now, do I relish saying the word "vagina" every single day? NO, I do NOT. It's awful. But I'm not going to pass on any stupid body part issues to her and make it seem like something shameful by calling it something else than what it really is. So I say it and I pretend it's normal and then I make gagging faces in my head.

But mice? Well, as much as in THEORY I'd like to not pass on any squeamish issues, I did. But then the next day I pretended I was kidding and wasn't ACTUALLY freaked out by the dead mouse and it totally worked because she's 2 1/2. 

She and I were doing laundry and went to the garage to put in a load. Then 30 minutes later we went back into the garage to switch the laundry and right in front of the dryer was a dead mouse. As in, it had JUST died. And it looked creepily peaceful, like it was just tired and needed a rest and the lull of the washer just put him right to sleep on the concrete. But obviously I wasn't expecting to see a dead mouse where there hadn't been one 30 min ago, so I involuntarily screamed and then did the Icky Body Shake that you do when something is Icky and you just want to shake the experience off of you.

So I went upstairs and started frantically texting the aforementioned friend about how she HAD to hop on a plane and get this damn mouse OUT of my path b/c it was icky and dead and I had shit tons of laundry to do. Because while said friend won't utter the body part words, she DID grow up on a farm and can get all Farm Girl Fierce when needed. Seriously, there was a story about a squirrel that nearly made me puke. It was humane and all, but BARF.

Since she declined to take care of the rodent problem and the husband declined to take a sick day and HANDLE IT, I covered it with a blue party napkin and kept doing laundry.

So here's the incredibly random Squeamish Poll. Would you rather go on about penises and vaginas all day to your potty training, inquisitive toddler, or put your hand inside a plastic bag and grab the dead mouse and get him out of the garage? Pick your poison.

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