{shortcode-deb527e77e9fb29744f6bcdbd6a9e067574d7448} There are many strange facts that live rent-free in my brain. One of these facts is that mouse droppings very closely resemble black sesame seeds. This information isn’t relevant just yet. Just remember it for later. Onto the story now:

Last Saturday, I climbed mountains, crossed the seven seas, swam across the Charles River, and finally returned to Cambridge. I exaggerate. It was a six-hour plane ride from California. I rewatched “Ratatouille.” I thought about my classes and felt ~stress~. I took a nap. I watched the Buzz Lightyear movie for the first time. It was an intense and poignant space odyssey with themes of friendship and self-discovery.

Anyway, as the last suitemate to return to Harvard from winter break, I knew my arrival on campus was important. Long-awaited, even. The second I exited the elevator and turned my key in the suite door, all the balance in the world would be restored. I’m not self-absorbed. I’m just secure in my friends’ love for me. And for what it’s worth, I love them too. (Rare wholesome moment, I know).

But little did I know there was another guest waiting to greet me when I walked into my room. I missed my room on campus — the obnoxious fairy lights, many CVS wall photos, and wildly impractical but very soft target shag rug in the middle of the floor.

And while I was lying down on said rug and trying to feel the joy of returning to campus, I noticed something peeking out from under my heater.

No, fear not, it wasn’t a rat. It was actually a huge ass rat.

I’m kidding. It was just a mouse trap.

I’m not often at eye level with the floor, so I wondered. How long has this mousetrap been here? It could have been two months, two weeks, or even just two days. Was it precautionary or the aftermath of a visit from an uninvited guest? And if it was the aftermath of a rodent sighting, why does Harvard think a single mousetrap is going to successfully keep a smart mouse away?

And then I began to spiral. What if this mousetrap really did catch a mouse or rat who was venturing into my room for some warmth? And what if the mouse had a family? Having just watched “Ratatouille,” I was particularly sympathetic to the rodent cause. It’s cold out there. Winter in Cambridge is hard for humans. It’s probably even harder for little animals without homes and Canada Goose coats.

Yet as my sympathy for the rodents of Cambridge began to manifest in the form of tears, I received confirmation from my suitemates that there had, in fact, been a mouse-sighting in two of their rooms earlier that week.

The tears were immediately sucked back into my eyes. I realized, in that moment, that mice are much cuter in my imagination than they are in real life. I reminded myself that in their barrage of live-action remakes of animated classics, there is a good reason why Disney skipped right over live-action Ratatouille.

I felt a compelling need to inspect my room for signs of Stuart Little. My snack drawer, which had been mostly cleaned out before break, was unharmed. The single pack of FlyBy Oreos in the drawer was still whole, wrapper included. And it’s hard to not eat a pack of Oreos when you find one. So with reasonable confidence, I came to the conclusion that Stuart’s exploration of our suite did not include my room.

So I brushed my teeth and changed into my pajamas. I had washed my sheets right before leaving for break, and I would fall asleep comforted by the lingering scent of Tide pod. I peeled my blanket back, ready to climb into my bed, and





And given that we do not have a kitchen, a spice rack, or any reason for keeping sesame seeds in our suite, it can be reasonably inferred that the sesame seeds were definitely NOT sesame seeds.

If you haven’t put the pieces together yet: Yes, friends. Distressingly enough, Stuart slept peacefully like Goldilocks and then SHIT in my bed.

It’s been a week and a sheet wash since this encounter. And while I appreciate the validation that my bed is comfortable, I continue to feel DEEPLY VIOLATED by the thought of Stuart going potty and then shimmying around under my covers.

There have since been a few sightings of a small brown blurry running through our suite. And while I hope he steers clear of my mouse trap and lives a long and happy life, I will continue to sleep with one eye open, in case Stuart decides to make my bed his toilet again. Especially when I am in it.

The End.