September 14, 2008

Cat Got Your Tongue? A Mouse Ate My Mic!

There's a mouse in our house.

I found out the hard way that it has an appetite for technology. I've now learned the lesson that it's *not* a good idea to leave snacks in your gear bag when there's a mouse in the house.

The price I paid was losing a $30.00 Plantronics .Audio 650 USB Headset. I'm really ticked off right now because it was a great headset with built-in mic that enabled me to record good, quality sound for podcasting. It also came in real handy for joining in on public talkcasts.

A mouse got into my gear bag and while snacking on a granola bar I had mistakenly left in the bottom of the main compartment, he decided to chew on a few other cables for desert. Along with the Plantronics headset mic, the it also snacked on an iPod cable as well. I've since inspected all of the other cables in the bag and luckily, those seem to be the only casualties of the mouse's appetite.

I guess you could say he has good taste, right?

What makes me even more mad is that I usually keep my gear bag very organized and while I do travel with snacks, I usually keep them in a different compartment. If I had put the granola bar in the other zippered pouch like I normally do, instead of tossing it into the larger compartment in a hurry, the mouse might not have chewed the other cables that happened to be close in proximity to the granola bar. It's hard to tell though because this was one hungry mouse. It also chewed a little U-shaped mouse hole (think Tom & Jerry) in the cardboard inside the fabric divider.

I'll have to replace my headset mic and won't be able to do any quality recording until I do. I'll need to check with my insurance company before I go shopping just to see if it might be covered.

We have had trouble with mice in years past but never was there any damage except for some half-eaten boxes of food in our pantry. We've since learned to keep any and all dried or loose food items inside plastic storage containers. I never thought my gear bag would be a target, but now I know better than to keep anything in it that might attract a mouse, like any type of food. It's just like adding bait to a cluster of cables. Who knew cables would also be so yummy to a mouse?


I took some photos of the damage. While I was taking photos, I started thinking more and more about taking photos of ALL of my gear to document everything for insurance purposes. I started photographing everything but had to take a break and post this in the mean time. I plan on doing another meme post of "What's in your bag" to detail all the gear with which I travel. It will serve as a good documentation for insurance in case anything else should ever happen to other items.

If there is any humor in this at all, it's the fact that Nate and I were, just the other day, discussing how we recently increased our insurance policy on our computers and gear before we went on our road trip. Nate said that when they explained the additional coverage over the phone, they listed the weirdest things that were covered. Damage done by rats was one of the things on the list. I'll have to check with the insurance company now because I'm sure that the deductible will be higher than the cost of the headphones and iPod cable, but who knows. Maybe I'll get lucky and it will be covered somehow and I can get them replaced.

Wish me luck!
(Wish the mouse luck he doesn't get caught!)


  1. Oh that stinks. I hope your insurance covers the costs and you get rid of that mouse.

  2. Wow, cool post. I'd like to write like this too - taking time and real hard work to make a great article... but I put things off too much and never seem to get started. Thanks though. best cat food for allergies


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