Pass the cheese, please

Sheila Burt

An unwanted third roommate has invaded Nicole Ripley and Erin Olson’s first-floor Allison Hall room.

He only comes out at night. He wakes them up. He eats their food.

His name: Squeaky McSqueakster, a furry mouse who lives in the building’s ventilation ducts.

Ripley, a Communication freshman, and Olson, a Medill freshman, are only two of several first-floor residents of Allison who have encountered mice scurrying in and out of their rooms through vents and radiators.

Although Ripley and Olson have heard McSqueakster since Fall Quarter, they finally met him in an all too personal way when he jumped from Ripley’s desk onto her bed one night. Ripley, who was not in bed at the time, later found a half-eaten chocolate bar on top of her dresser.

The mice in Allison even partied hard — perhaps a little too hard — over the holidays when students left the dorms.

Education freshman Evan Seacat came home from Winter Break to find about four dead mice scattered around his room. The mice had found some wrapped chocolate candy beneath Seacat’s couch.

“Our room always smells bad, so we think there are more mice,” said Jim Maley, Seacat’s roommate and a Weinberg freshman.

Associate Director of Housing Operations Joe Simonetti said Allison has the largest rodent infestation this year for unknown reasons. But the largest factor that attracts more mice is open food, Simonetti said.

“Food needs to be placed in containers and high up in shelves,” he said.

Allison residents are not the only students witnessing a pest invasion. Kristy Tridhavee, a second-floor resident of South Mid-Quads Hall, first encountered a mouse Winter Quarter while writing a paper at 3 a.m. A friend stopped by and noticed a mouse eating food by the refrigerator on the floor.

“It was eating our rice cakes,” said Tridhavee, a Weinberg freshman. “I guess it’s a healthy mouse.”

Tridhavee and her roommate later named the gray mouse Felix. Although Felix has laid off the rice cakes, Tridhavee said a new, black mouse, which SMQ residents named Ron, has been seen running through the vents and occasionally snooping into rooms.

Colleen Conrad, another first-floor resident of Allison, said she found a dead mouse under her radiator and saw one moving while plugging in an appliance. But the Weinberg freshman deals with the mice problem by using one simple rationalization.

“It’s not like they’re going to eat me,” Conrad said.