10 PM: I place a frozen pizza into the oven. Expectations for a delicious, nutritious dinner are low.
10:10: I go into the kitchen to check on the pizza. I notice what appears to be a large rodent scurry across the hallway into my office. I quickly assess that the large rodent is a rat.
10:20: I summon my cats, Beau and Athena, into my office to sniff out the giant rat. They sniff around and head to the laundry room. The rat seems to be behind the washing machine. I move the washing machine, broom handle in hand, but there’s no rat.
10:21: The cats lose interest. It’s just me and the broom handle now.
11:30: I search for the rat for over an hour. This guy his hiding incredibly well.
11:45: My pooch Casper wanders into the office to see what I’m up to. He quickly forgets about me, picks up the scent of the rat and frantically searches for it. I become very proud of him for showing initiative.
1 AM: Casper and I head to bed. The rat is still at-large.
8 AM: Thoughts of the rat hiding, pooping and crawling on things makes for a horrible night of sleep. I get up and make some coffee.
8:10: Athena comes into the kitchen and starts frantically meowing while trying to get behind the refrigerator. I move the fridge slightly to the side and see a tail…
8:20: After barricading the kitchen to prevent escape into the house, I open up the back door that leads outside. I grab the cats, hoping they’ll flush out the rat and he’ll run outside.
8:25: The cats are scared of the rat. Athena pushes open the door to the kitchen and the cats flee. I’ve had enough of this—I pull the fridge forward and the rat immediately appears, runs forward, tries to run into my office but it’s blocked off, then runs outside into the shared hallway of our apartment complex. I watch him look at the open door leading outside to the cold Connecticut winter, and then I watch as he tries desperately to climb the stairs leading up to my neighbor’s apartment.
He looks at me, I look at him.
I decide he looks like Master Splinter.
8:30: I shut my door so Master Splinter can’t get back in. I get ready to go warn my neighbor about the rat that is slowly trying to climb the stairs up to her apartment. Instead, I hear her coming downstairs. I open the door and as she’s coming down the stairs. She says “I think a squirrel just ran down the stairs.”
I inform her that it was a rat. She wishes it was a squirrel.
8:45: My neighbor knocks on the door and tells me the rat has run into the parking garage…and is hiding under my car (There are approximately 10 cars in this garage—and he chose mine)
9:00: I leash up Casper and we head to the garage. I immediately see the rat under my car. The rat sees me and proceeds to crawl up into the bottom of my car. Casper and I get in the car and I drive around outside the garage, hoping this crazy and frighteningly intelligent rodent falls out of my car.
9:05: I park the car back in the garage, hopeful that the rat has left the building.
He has not.
He jumps out from under my car and runs behind a baby stroller that’s sitting in one of my neighbor’s parking spots. I find the image of my neighbor encountering the rat while attempting to load her baby into the stroller to be very disturbing.
Casper leaps into action—literally. He runs behind the stroller and flushes out the rat. I’m holding on to the leash for dear life and he chases the rat around the garage.
At one point, we’ve both lost track of the rat. Suddenly, Casper sees the rat a split second before either me or the rat realize it.
Then this happens: Casper snatches the rat up into his mouth and flips it up into the air. The rat hits the ground and runs for the exit. We run after him and watch him run far, far away from our apartment complex.
The following Monday: Casper walks around the house with a newfound confidence. He wears sunglasses, even at night, and will only respond to the nickname “C-Money.”