Thursday, November 11, 2010

Rats 1, Nick 0

A year seems like a long time, but the number of items we own often go unused or get brushed aside for a year or longer. My shed is a good example of this.

My shed has mostly been a pathetic disaster of personal items, tools, debris, and who knows what else. Today I took a hard line and began emptying it wholesale. Before I knew it, I had a vast pile of scrap, unused items, and the remnants of a rats' nest. In fact, I could hear the damn things squeaking away every so often as I shoveled their home into Glad bag oblivion.

It was quite a mess. But I was not depressed. Actually, I was fairly juiced because I am starting to see the vision for it as a functional workshop, notwithstanding my rodent problem. In cleaning it out, I created a ton more space, making ample room for the Jet table saw, the Craftsman radial arm saw my dad passed on to me, and my recently acquired Rockwell drill press, which I bought today for a steal ($60!).

In fact, my wood scrap problem has gotten to the point that I have enough wood for functional workbench and and series of shelves. My strategy in dealing with the rat/mouse problem is to remove all goat and chicken grain from the workspace and make the area very spartan. Mice and their ilk tend to love warrens and locations that resemble them. Hopefully, between thoroughly cleaning and emptying the place and putting down poison, this problem will remove itself. Time will tell, but at this point, I kind of expect at least some mouse and rat activity.

The remaining half of my strategy involves keeping everything stored away neatly, in tool boxes, or hanging along the wall, as appropriate. At least this way if the vermin do come, my tools have some protection from their dung and cleanup will be fairly swift. This is the hope anyway. Since I am not made of money, I have to make this space work, like it or not.

I do take some solace in looking at my neighbor's work shed--which is a third the size of mine, but piled in a quasi-organized fashion from floor to ceiling with tools and anything else you might need for building just about anything. If he can make his shop work for him (he does all of his sawing outside), then I can certainly make mine work for me.

Anyway, I am inspired at the moment with my progress. Hopefully, my strategy will deter or kill the emmisaries of the mouse kingdom. If it doesn't, nothing will change, but at least amidst the wasps and mouse dung, I'll be able to find my tools.

Over and Out,



Martin Schap said...

Sounds like a trip to the hardware store to pick up some Victor Rat Traps is in order. Give me a call if you need any trapping tips. I have become quite well versed in this topic after our little rat infestation this fall. Perhaps you are way ahead of me though.

Nick-dog said...

Hey Martin! No, this is the first time I've encountered rats. Any intel you have to share on handling the matter is certainly welcome. The fewer rats, the better.