One summer day when I was a little girl, probably 5 or 6, I go into the backyard only to find my kitty Morris, my much adored orange tabby who sleeps with me every night, playing with a mouse. This mouse is not a present for me like on previous occasions but food and entertainment for Morris. "Morris, no." I say batting him away from the mouse. First Morris tries slinking off with the mouse pretending to be in trouble for something else. Then he tries hovering over it like its not there. Finally I pick Morris up and carry him away. The mouse is seriously injured by now. Who knows how long Morris'd been playing with it.
I stand looking at the mouse trying to think how to help. I know injured animals who can't survive are to be "put out of their misery" and I know what that means. I also know I can't wield a shovel (short arms and whatnot.) So I use my most powerful feature, my little leg. I try stepping on the mouse in order to do the humane thing. Of course I probably weigh 35 pounds so its not working. I'm crying now, but I don't know what else to do. I step on him a few more times then remember how mice can flatten themselves and realize this won't work. Guilt pours in at the fact that I'm making it worse instead of putting the poor guy out of his misery. Finally, I pick it up the mouse and decide to comfort him, thinking if I explain, it will make things better. "I'm so sorry, little guy." I sob. And of course the mouse bites me.
I begin screaming hysterically, "Mom, I've got rabies! Mom, I've got rabies!"
I'm pretty sure my mom got the shovel.