If I told him once I told him a million times. I said to him, " Manny, this is not a magical kingdom and your name's not Mickey. So, get out!" You think the message would sink in but noooo. Manny being the stubborn sort just kept ignoring me. Well, a good couple of months have passed and I'm nearly at wits end with him. Rotten little rodent. I tried spring traps only to find the bait cleanly removed and no spring sprung. I put steel wool in every conceivable crevice and notch he could possibly enter. Somehow that mouse would find his way. Now my flat happens to be a three story walk up and it's no easy task for me getting up those stairs, I just can't figure how a short stubby grubby little grifter like Manny might manage it or even bother. There's plenty more morsels to be found down at street level, especially with Sister Dawn's Soul Food next door. Yet Manny seems to always have a hankering for whatever I might be stirring up on my stove top. Can't say I blame him after the two times I've eaten Sister Dawn's greased grime. I guess I really only have myself to blame for the second plunge into that gastronomical wreckage. So, how could I blame poor Manny for wishing to elevate his senses for more refined dining? Not that I see my own sorcery in the kitchen much finer than Sister Dawn's, it's just it is. In any case, I'm pretty sure Manny might have been pushed out of an all too overcrowded family affair next-door anyhow. I certainly wouldn't want him bringing in any others. His gal Ethel Vermen and his cousin Ratzo are no more welcome than Manny Mouse himself. So I remind him daily, this not being a magical kingdom and all business. Got some glue traps and upped the ante with peanut butter for bait. Does he bite? Well, you know Manny, too clever to be caught he is. Until, that infamous night of revelry, when no creature is silent, and the music is maddening, and the drunks are drunker, all awaiting that New Year's babe to be born. And after months of chasing, after months plotting and planning, keeping the cupboards under lock and key, after midnight raucousness chasing a furry grey bitty beast from under the fridge to under the stove then under the sink, turning over tables and chairs, stomping like a madman, finally Manny and I come face to face. There he is run into that glue trap he managed to avoid forever seemingly snickering as he always got away, but now I had him. His head cinches between the double-ended prongs of my Ginsu serrated twelve inch knife. Finally Manny will pay for all his pilfering. There he is looking so woeful as his beady reflective eyes sear a plea of mercy into mine. I draw back the curved ergonomically designed handle of my Ginsu blade and with a fast flit of one prong slit cunningly into his ribcage. The squeak is short. I see his chest swell, a tiny heart pumps its last two beats. It is over. It is a new year for man.