How did Mickey Mouse become so cute and cuddly? Don't get me wrong, I love the guy. But come on! Some of our most well known childhood icons and characters were mice. Mickey. Minnie. Mighty. Jerry. The list goes on.

And they are all based on God forsaken creatures appropriately called VERMIN.

Our garage recently became the local hotel and spa for neighboring field mice. I'd go into the garage to get something from the freezer or to take something off the shelves and there would be a mice, more times than not, scurring across the floor.

YIKES! I would literally YELP.

I HATE mice. Oh, I don't mind them in a tank or cage spinning on a wheel and looking adorable.

I guess it's like snakes. I don't mind having one as a pet, I just don't want to run into one crossing my path...LOOSE.

So anyway, we spent the weekend eradicating as many of the buggers as we could.

Saturday morning there were so many of them that we literally saw tails and faces poking out of boxes and shelves TAUNTING us. We couldn't go 5 minutes without seeing a mouse.

A friend of mine found a NEST in my box of old laserdiscs. And here's the funny part to balance out the GROSS part, they had a hot wheel car and a (TRUE, I swear) installation disk for MOUSE Works for the Mac.

Now THAT'S pretty funny. We even found a miniature deck of cards nearby from my wife's scrapbooking supplies. Poker, anyone?

By Sunday, there was little evidence of any new activity.

Except for the litter of mice. Yep. The minute I told my wife we found baby mice it was all over.

But the vet honestly told us that the most humane thing to do would be to feed them to our pet python.

Half hour later, 3 of the 5 were snake food.

The kids looked at us with those eyes that children give their parents when they want to raise mice as pets.

OUCH.

It WAS kind of cute. They even named them.

Sadly, Angelina Jumperina died a day later. My daughter gave her a dignified coffin (a jewelry gift box did the job) and everyone couldn't help but feel a little sad.

But I started thinking. Isn't what we did kind of like giving college tuition to the children of illegal aliens?

Think about it. The mice took over our garage. We bring their babies in and raise them.

Nah. It's not the same thing.

It's cute. I GUESS.

Yes, even I have a soft spot. Even though on principal, I am still not HANDLING the little critter.

I'm not THAT soft.

And now if you'll excuse me...I have to go on my hourly Mouse Patrol to make sure Junior's family doesn't come by for a family reunion.