True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young.

HOUSTON AND HOUSTONIANS 89
"When he has established himself the only thing to do is to
set fire to your house, lock the doors and windows and back off
and watch the fun. It is expensive, but it is the only sure
remedy. }
"The bed-bug has a terrible enemy in, the tiger beetle, which
we scientists know under the name drastus lionions fabrista.
He could and would, eat a bedful of bed-bugs inr two minutes.'if
he could only get at them. The trouble is that the bed-bugs get
inside the, mattresses and into the cracks of the bed while the
tiger has to content himself with a mere surface examination of
the bedspread.
"Speaking of rats," continued Bud, though, no one had mentioned
rats or even thought of them, "they are interesting members
also. When I first started to study them I was prejudiced
against them, but I soon learned to admire them, for they so
often do the unexpected and are constantly springing cute little
surprises.
"I remember one morning my lady stenographer pulled open
her desk drawer to begin Jher day's. work. Without a word of
warning seven rats, one big one and six smaller ones, leaped out
on her-we had to haul her out in the yard and pour water on
her to bring her to.
"Don't you know those rats planned the whole thing, and
laughed over. the success. of the joke afterward? I feel certain
that they did.
"When I built my residence I built it rat-proof, of course, )ut
the contractors did not. I had not been) there long before I
could hear the rats dancing and frolicking overhead in my bedroom.
Occasionally one would leave his place and fall down
between the walls. In trying to catch himself on the rough
plastering on the inside he would make a terrible racket. If
you did not know the space was too small you would think it
was a dog or a calf falling.
"I stood it as long as I could and then I got a{spring trap and
set it out in the hall. The first night, about 2 o'clock there was
a terrible racket out there, and I realized that I had got some
game. I turned on the light and went out.
"By the time I got there the rat was half way up the stair
steps, lugging the trap with him. He was caught by one of his
hind legs. When he saw me he abandoned the idea of going
up, turned a summe ault and came down, trap and all, in the
middle of the hall. Me was fighting mad, too, and made for me
with blood in his eyed. As I had on only a night gown and was
both barefooted and barelegged I retired promptly, slamming the
door as I did so. I got a chunk of stovewood and then finished
his ratship.
"I sunned the trap next day and set it again. Nothing doing.
Same result the next night and for several nights succeeding.
I was congratulating myself on having scared off the rats and

^

Young, Samuel Oliver. True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young.. Galveston, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth24646/. Accessed November 28, 2014.