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Varner: Life on road isn’t easy! The day I was attacked by Mickey Mouse

Editors note – Back in the early part of the 2000s I worked as a reporter for the Sentinel. I came across one of my favorite articles and to let everyone see that life as a sports writer is not always pretty. Enjoy..

The older I get the more I realize that God has a sense of humor and I seem to be comedy relief.

But that’s okay- It makes life interesting.

Between being savagely attacked by a field mouse to being locked in an Arby’s bathroom, a recent road trip turned out to prove my theory.

I set off on a journey that led me to Factoryville, Pa. to cover the Mifflin County girls softball teams, the 11-year olds and the 9-and-10-year olds, which were playing for state titles.

The day started out as a quiet, peaceful Sunday. I awoke to hear the sounds of the last remaining crickets and a cold breeze blowing through the valley.

That was the last calming moment I had on the trip.

The trip was uneventful until I was just outside of Scranton. It’s funny how one single incident can lead to such a domino effect for the rest of the one’s day.

I had to stop at an Arby’s to take a break, grab a soda and early lunch and then get back on the road to finish my trip.

With the simple turn of the lock , I knew I was in trouble.

The sound from inside the lock itself scared me.

I tried to open the door and get out but it wouldn’t budge!

I was now locked in a bathroom far away from home and on a 1:30 pm deadline to get to the game. With the clock sporting 11 am, I waited a couple minutes before I started pounding on the door to try to get some help. I got out with the help of a local locksmith that was called in.

Then I got to Route 6. I looked at my directions and they didn’t tell me whether to go east or west.

So being a typical male, I flipped the coin and went East.

Bad move.

It took me 20 minutes to realize I was going back from where I came. So I moved onto another road to make my way back.

I arrived at Factoryville at 1:10 pm still plenty of time for the game.

I found Christie Mathewson Field with no problem and I walked to it.

Another problem arose there were three fields with the same name.

I found the first two rather easily but in keeping with the day I was having, neither field had any players.

I was panicked. Where was the third? It was five minutes before the game was to start and I had no signs of any full fields.

That’s when fate stepped in. I actually got directions from a fire police officer.

He told me about a third field of that same name in nearby Fleetville. It was five miles through the backwoods.

Eventually I found the field, covered the game and was back on the road less than an hour later.

On my way back, I was thinking the worst was behind and it was smooth sailing home.

Wrong! It was time for the main event. It was me versus Mickey Mouse for control of my vehicle.

I was lost, frustrated and angry as I started looking for my way home.

Suddenly, I felt something touching the bottom of my leg.

After I moved my foot slowly, I looked down to find a hungry field mouse trying to use my foot as a buffet!

Oh by the way, I hate mice!

After all the frustration I experienced in my day, I blew up.

I took out my baseball glove and caught that mouse. With the car stopped and a large amount of thrust I sent the little guy flying. I still don’t recall of him hitting the dirt layered ground.

Anyway, I made it back four hours later.

I was tired, grumpy and not ready to laugh at that time. But I was hungry and I promised the other reporters at the Sentinel (where. I worked at during that time) that I would pick up dinner.

I picked up the food without incident, but on my way out, a black cat crossed my path and looked back at me.

I looked at him and said, “You’re a little late.”

Sometimes you just have to laugh.

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