Thursday, August 14, 2008

Going Batty (sorry, I had to)

Where do I even begin...?

Well, I should probably begin with me, I guess. I am sometimes a little paranoid and irrational, as well as a jumpy son of a gun. Once I was out at picnic point with Lia and Elsworth and JV, and there was some animal getting in the trash about 20 feet from us. I was terrified; I "hid" by standing up on a bench, huddling behind Lia, and watching what I thought was a bear. I'm pretty sure I ran back to the car, and if you have ever met me, it's probably pretty clear that running does not happen too often in my life. Later, my father made fun of me severely, taunting me with "Oh yes, Reemie, I'm sure there are many bears in Madison. Yes, I'm sure they spend time right by the university with all the young people drinking. In the middle of a mid-sized city with a population of a few hundred thousand people." You get the idea. He was probably right though. I was being pretty irrational. It was most likely a raccoon. Maybe a giant, horse sized raccoon, but a raccoon nonetheless.

Another time, when I was 23 and working in a preschool in the basement of a church, it was my job to open the building in the mornings. I was alone in the dark classroom, and I went into the kids bathroom to make sure there was toilet paper. I looked around, and all of a sudden something caught my eye. There was a dead mouse floating in the toilet! I screamed and backed away. Why did I scream? I don't know. The mouse was clearly dead. I was alone. Nothing was going to happen. Still, I screamed. I knew the kids would be coming within the next fifteen minutes, and there would be a lot more screams (probably a lot cuter than mine) if I didn't take care of the situation. I put on two pairs of gloves - one latex and one of those yellow rubber dishwashing ones - and lifted the mouse out of the toilet. I think I may have put it in the trash...I don't remember. What I do remember is bumping into a door afterwards and having somebody's jacket fall off the door onto the floor. The sudden noise made my heart jump and I screamed again. Because of a jacket calling on the floor. A jacket and a dead mouse...and a blood curdling scream. It's a little ridiculous, don't you think?

But tonight. Tonight was different. The screaming and the heart jumping and the slamming of the doors and almost crying and sending out frantic texts was all totally rational tonight. You know why? Because there was a fucking BAT in my apartment. Right in my living room, flying back and forth into my kitchen. A bat. Fuck...

I had just returned home from a lovely evening at the High Noon, where there was a benefit for lovely Miss Erika. I'd also made a lovely stop at lovely Taco Bell because damn, I wanted a quesadilla up in here. I sat on my couch, watching the television a bit, checking the email a bit...all the usual. All of a sudden, I saw something out of the corner of my eye. What the fuck?? There's this monster of a creature flying over my head and zipping by right in front of my face. I cower on the couch with my legs flailing up in the air, brandishing a pillow over my head as I let out short little gasps and screams. The airborne monster flies back and forth from my kitchen to my living room, which is really just one big space, never stopping to land a single time. At this point I am absolutely freaking out. I HATE flying animals in any buildings; even birds in airports or Sam's Club creep me out, although they have all that wide open space. I've seen birds get in the house before, but never a bat. I was absolutely terrified.

I ran into my bedroom and slammed the door shut. I'd peek out from time to time, only to see the giant bat flying back and forth at breakneck speed. Several times, it seemed to turn and start flying right towards my hiding spot behind the door. At those points, I would once again slam the door. I'm sure my brand new downstairs neighbors appreciated this at 11:30 on a school night. I didn't know what to do, so I tried several things, all of which were stupid and pointless and did not help the situation. I threw a pillow across the room, and the bat ignored it. I ran across the room and opened the door to the hallway, which the bat went nowhere near. I managed to frantically gather my phone and computer (and for some reason, turn off the television) while the bat was in the kitchen for a minute. I ran back into my room and slammed the door again, bracing myself for a long night of being held hostage in my very own bedroom. Suck!

At this point I'm very close to crying. I send out a frantic text message to four people, only TWO of whom answered (Schabow and Uncle Juice, you two are in the dog house until further notice). And here, my friends, is where I must thank my lucky stars for the one and only Miss Genia, who called me back within minutes. She sounded slightly amused on the phone, and about ten trillion times calmer than I felt, and she said she'd come over. "I'm actually kind of excited about it," she confessed. Well Genia, your adventure is my nightmare. Keep that in mind.

Genia is a life saver. She came right over, instructed me to stay in the bathroom, grabbed a broom and a giant towel and was off on her way to save the day! As I sat, biting my nails and cringing, listening at the door to hear the action, I heard Genia calmly talking to the bat, saying such soothing things as "don't be stupid, little bat! Get out that door!" Through some act of brilliant genius, or talent, or whatever, she was able to get the bat out the back door and out onto the lanai. I cried a few tears of joy, and several tears of horror and hugged Genia as hard as I could. Now that's one badass woman right there.

Since I was in no shape to be in the same room whilst the great bat chase of 2008 was taking place, and I couldn't have asked Genia to do anything else, no pictures were taken. You know what you do when you can't get live pictures? You reenact. Below are the reenactment pictures of Genia fighting like a warrior and me acting like a total boner in the bathroom. Notice the one of me with my head down. I was most likely crying like a toddler during that one.

Genia wields her broom of steel:


Genia wields her towel of steel:


Reem bites her nails in the bathroom like a total boner:


Reem cries:


So yes, I'm terrified of a tiny little animal, which you all may find ridiculous, or hilarious. ButI know deep in your heart that one or two of you must be a bit concerned. What of the repercussions, you may ask? What of the victim in the this story? Yes, I may have acted like a wiener, but damn, this was a bit scarring! I can guarantee you that if I even end up sleeping tonight, the sleep will be oft interrupted by dreams of bats, intermingled with pirate ships and homework, I'm sure. Even as I sit here writing this, every time I close my eyes, I imagine a red tunnel with hundred of bats flying right towards me. And for some reason, the tunnel looks like the inside of a throat and the bats are all cartoons. Every noise I hear when I'm on my own will make me jump. I'll have to sleep with all the windows and doors closed for weeks to come. I'll be frightened every time I open a drawer or the refrigerator - maybe a bat will fly out! Every shadow I see will make me run under the covers or put up the hood of my jacket. I'll be forced to keep my hair in a ponytail just in case a bat gets in and tried to get all tangled up in my hair. I won't open my mouth for fear of a bat appearing and flying directly into it. Anybody remember the Simpsons episode where there are rats running around and Bart yells "Milhouse, don't open your mouth!" and as soon as he does, a bunch of rats land directly inside? Yeah. That's how it feels.

The last thing I'll mention is that I did a few other irrational things whilst waiting to hear back from the people I texted. I immediately went on facebook and changed my status to something like "reem needs help getting the bat out right now." I put on a lot more clothing; I put on pants, a hoodie that I zipped all the way up, and for some reason, a pink hat. I think it was the hair tangling theory there. Ugh. I considered going up to the attic to wake up Xiao and see if he could help me. I considered living in a hotel for the rest of my life. I most likely considered calling YOU. Look what you could have been a part of!

So that's the story of the bat. And how I, as a grown ass women, still act like a total baby. A paranoid, neurotic baby. Waa waa. Eat it.

22 comments:

Reem Tara said...

EVIDENCE: A sizable piece of dust just landed on my computer keyboard, and I nearly threw the thing across the room. It's going to be a long night...

Sara Ashes said...

I CANNOT BELIEVE you didn't text me!!! I could have given you a million ideas- not that you could have carried out any of them anyway. Well thank god for Miss Genia! SO, have you determined how the little fucker got inside your house? and do you know how long he's been there- like have you been out at night recently? you might have missed him during his "awake" hours before. Talk about ruining Olympic watching! Jeez...

love you and your hilarity- you're comin back little sis!!! xoxoxo

Sarah said...

awww, i hope you got some sleep. you and genia make a great team...i guess she would be batwoman and you would be robin?

Daniella Maria said...

haha oh lord, my child. that is horrible and funny. horribly funny.

Reem Tara said...

Yeah, this totally ruined my Olympics watching. Stupid wildlife.

And Sara, the idea that this bat may have been in my house previous to last night is one of the most terrifying ideas you've ever put in my head. Oh my effing god.

The Pirate Queen said...

I have some real-life experience with bats that I could have sent you over the phone, but, alas, no luck. The photos are priceless.
Miss you, g

sherinyb said...

oh reem! I'm so sorry your home was invaded, but so happy for this hilarious tale (and for Genia! yay!).

Did I ever tell you about the time a bat flew into the condemned intern house in Albany? I was up on the 3rd floor, drinking and other things, and I come down to my 2nd floor bedroom and there's this bat flying all around. I chase it up & down the stairs a bit, open the front door (no help), then maneuvered myself & closed strategic doors in this very strange & cobbled-together house so it wouldn't get into my bedroom while I was sleeping. (and all of that while drunk, etc...)

In the morning, I peep out my door and it's there - sleeping ON THE WALL OUTSIDE MY BEDROOM. I called the intern director and he came over with a fishing net (and a baseball bat? I think I'm imagining that). He caught it and sent it on its way.

And I generally like bats, because they eat mosquitos. We saw lots of them (from a distance) in California, and cheered them on every time.

Reem Tara said...

Sherin, I love the "etc" and "other things" code words. I can't believe you were able to chase it! I guess I don't completely hate bats when they're outside, flying over the lanai...In retrospect, I guess I could have been a lot calmer, but whatever. Then I wouldn't have gotten to reenact those awesome pictures...

eidothea said...

Xaio was in the attic the whole time ...WHAAAAAAAA?

Reem Tara said...

I know, Gwen. My sister has already strongly reprimanded me for not going to wake him up. Not just because he would have taken care of it, but because I would have had great stories to tell.

WAA WAA!!!

Anonymous said...

Well, it was actually kind of fun. I know this is weird, but I love a challenge like this...coaxing a bat out of an apartment. I love the unexpected adventure!! It's funny, but I don't know if you heard me or not, but I talked to the bat a lot, you know to "calm" him before I whacked him with the broom and then literally swept him out onto the linai. I'm pretty sure I didn't hurt him permanently, just stunned him and then he did that cute little "eek" noise. Hope you're okay Mr. Batty!

Sarah said...

oh yeah, i just remembered, another great bat weapon is a tennis racket. that's what my dad used when our summer vacation was ruined by bats. i think they are cute personally, but mom is not a fan.

ela said...

You are your sister are both hilarious with your wild animal invasions. Apossums, bats, what's next... a mole? chipmunk?
freaking hilarious. You know, to be so tough, both you and your sister can be a little sissy about the animals. ;)

Sara Ashes said...

hmmm ela, we'll see how you fare if Tallulah brings in a mole or a chipmunk into your lovely home!!!

nicole said...

Girl, you can write! I almost peed while reading.

I'm glad you had someone to rescue you. One time I "helped" Kyle get a bat out of the house. I was trying to be all bad-ass brave, but every time it came near me, I just shrieked and ducked. Kyle some how managed to get it into one of those giant waxed vegetable boxes and shoo it off the fire escape. Lately he's been rescuing me from cockroaches. Who thought I would be so afraid of those things?? You should see the flying ones...

I linked you on my blog, too!

Lia said...

Wow! That sounds INCREDIBLY horrible! I'm so glad Genia was able to save the day. I would not have been able to handle that at all. And the story about the dead mouse in the toilet--that was horrible too. I don't think I could have done that...although I guess you had no choice. I wish I would have seen that facebook update...that's hilarious!

Emil said...

Reemie-

I probably would've handled it better than you, but not much better. I probably would've cried a little less than you, I guess.

And btw, because of your lack of knowledge of the most recent Batman movies...in Batman Begins, 10-year-old Bruce Wayne falls into a cave full of bats, then for the rest of his young life has an intense fear of bats, just like you. But when he's older he chooses to make others fear the symbol of the bat, too, by wearing a bat suit and scaring the baddies.

Which means, of course, that Genia might be your arch nemesis one day, since she's not afraid of bats and knows how to beat them.

Awesome, awesome post Reemie

Sarah G said...

Hey, I like that shower curtain, though

Anonymous said...

I googled "bat" and "toddler" and your hilarious post came up. Thanks for the laugh, but I can sympathize with the terror as well-my daughter (2 1/2) and I just experienced a bat invasion of our own. I have a small apartment, no windows open, and am at a loss as to how the damn thing got in, but both of us were cowering and crying. Finally I decided I had to be the grown up and do something, I ran to the patio and threw it open, praying the damn thing would get the idea and GET OUT. On his next fly-by, as I was covering our heads with a blanket, he took the hint and headed outside. I am still freaked out and will probably be for a while. The funniest thing about your post is that you mentioned changing your facebook status while it was happening, I did that too!! LOL

Reem Tara said...

Oh my god! That sounds awful! I kept thinking to myself "If I had a kid, I'd have to be SO much less of a baby right now!" I'm so glad you found my blog - thanks for reading!

Anonymous said...

i was directed to your blog by daniella, in response to my own blog on myspace which is about my current issue of having a wild rat in my bedroom closet. It is there as we speak and I am sleeping on the couch because I'm too afraid to go back in there.
Just thought you should know you are not alone. There are others who are neurotically afraid of the wild little creatures as well.
~Cole

Reem Tara said...

Awesome, thanks for reading, Cole! I cannot even begin to imagine having a rat in my room. I mean, honestly, I'd probably be freaking out less than the bat (the whole flying thing bugs me) but really...a rat? That's kind of insane to me...