Thursday, January 28, 2010

How to Get Into Pest Control

One night when I was 10 years old I was woken by my mother who asked me to help catch a mouse that was terrorising her and my father in their bedroom. Wearing only my pyjamas I entered my parent's bedroom to find Smokey, my terrier, frantically running around the bed, his tail in a blur of excitement. My father was lifting various pieces of furniture under which the mouse had darted.

The mouse was quick. Despite Smokey's best efforts he couldn't catch it. The mouse always found somewhere the dog could not go. Then the mouse shot out from under the dresser that I and my father moved. It ran to the window and ran up the back of a curtain. Smokey stood to attention, eyes fixed on the curtain and emitting a plaintive frustrated whine. I took hold of the curtain and shook it in the hope that the mouse would drop and Smokey could pounce. The first part of the plan worked well. The mouse dropped to the floor. But before Smokey could react, the mouse had found another dark enclosed space to hide; my pyjama trouser leg.

This came as something of a shock to me. I am not a natural dancer but I think I did a version of an American Indian rain dance as the mouse ran up one trouser leg and thankfully down the other. My parents were no help. They were helpless in fact. Helpless with laughter. This confused Smokey. He was so busy watching them that the mouse, on leaving my bed time garments shot out the door and was never seen again.

"Poor mouse" said my mother.
"Poor mouse?" I said. "What about me? I could be scarred for life."

Some would say I have been. Perhaps that is why I ended up in pest control. I've had it in for that 'poor' mouse ever since.

I don't suggest this route to a career in pest control. I would suggest the alterantive route of doing the Open Polytechnic Certificate in Urban Pest Management or if you want to work on pests in the countryside, a National Trade Academy course or contact the National Possum Control Agencies.

Good luck and don't forget to tuck your trousers down your socks.

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