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Bat Control

“What’s he doing?”

“He says it’s bat control.”

“Seriously?  He looks . . . he looks like he’s just crazy.”

“I know, right?  But, he says there’s a bat in his dorm room and he’s taking care of bat control by himself.”

The boy in question was a freshman, and was dancing, or jerking around, with a sheet in front of his window at night in a first-floor dorm room.  He’d opened up the window, which is gave all of us a nice view of what was going on.  So far, no one had seen a bat, but this was a lot better than the junk reality show playing in the common room, so a small crowd had gathered on the sidewalk and grass outside his window.

“So, if he’s doing bat control, where’s the bat?  All I see is the dude and his sheet.  Weird.”

“No, no!  I see it.”

Bat hanging from a ceiling.

A bat hanging from the ceiling of a freshman dorm room.
(Artwork by Sharon Davis. Contact us for her contact info.)

A bunch of us leaned forward, some squinting, trying to catch a glimpse of the bat in the room.

“There!  There it is!  D’ya see it?”

The freshman had stopped waving his bed sheet for just a moment, long enough for the bat to settle back down in the corner of the wall.  It was big enough to make some of the girls screech and fall back behind some of the guys.  Its pursuer realized he had an audience, and turned to address us, enjoying his moment.

“It’s just a big brown bat, is all.  Dunno how it got in here, but I’m gonna try to make it fly back out the window.”

At this, some of the more squeamish girls fell back even further.

“Dude, use a racket or something!”

“Do you have one I could use?”

“No.  But, I’m sure a sheet ain’t gonna do it.”  The boy just shrugged.

“What if it bites him?” someone asked.

“It’s not gonna bite me, unless I try to hold it in my hands.  I just want to get it out of my room so it doesn’t crap all over everything.”

“Ewwwww,” someone muttered.

Someone else gasped, and the boy whirled around to recommence his herky-jerky-sheet-dance as the bat swooped around the room.  He assumed a bull-fighter’s stance when the bat flew lower through the air.

“I’m tellin’ ya, a sheet’s not gonna do a thing.  You gotta have something like a tennis racket or something,” the self-proclaimed bat control expert asserted, though no one was listening to him.  Everyone was too busy shouting out pointers to the freshman dancing in the window.

“On your left!”

“Up, up, up, up!!!”

“Don’t try to catch it, just scare it out the window.”

This last piece of advice earned the speaker a withering glare from Bat-Boy, as he was now being called.

And, then, suddenly, it was over.  The bat finally swooped out the window and zoomed far out of sight.  Everyone, except for the racket-lover, broke out into spontaneous applause and the boy took a bow, closed his window and his shutters, and everyone drifted off, talking about that night’s excitement.

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