Tuesday, July 31, 2012

There Was a Bat in My Apartment (aka Why I Can't Be Batgirl)

It's 2am. The lights are off, and I'm sleeping peacefully while Josh plays video games. I half woke up and saw the shadow of wings flapping above me. My sleepy brain thinks "Oh, a butterfly..."


We respond by screaming like little girls, then lunging for the apartment door in unison, seeking the comparative safety of the hallway. Josh is in his underwear and I'm missing my glasses. All I can see is the vague shape of a creature flapping about our living room.

We're hoping that the bat will fly into the hallway after us, so that we can duck back into the apartment and slam the door behind us. And hide until morning. But then it does come flapping into the hallway after us, and we panic and run farther from the apartment. Batty flies back into the living room.

At some point, it settles into hanging upside down from a plant hook. At this point, I get brave enough to sneak back into the living room to grab my glasses, a cell phone, and a computer.

You guys, I know that bats are next to harmless. Intellectually, I'm aware that it's a small, terrified animal that probably can't hurt me. This is approximately what it looked like--

Vespertilionidae : Myotis lucifugus - Little Brown Bat

--but my brain interpreted it as a serial killer with a chainsaw, riding a fire-breathing dragon. 

So anyway, Josh calls the property manager, and I decide to google "Bat in Apartment". Both gave variations of the same advice. Put on some gloves, catch it in a box, and take it outside. A plan that involved getting close to the bat.

It's less pants-pissingly terrifying when not in flight, so I sneak inside, open a window, and grab a garbage can and a stepping stool. But, it senses my approach and resumes its terrifying flight pattern. I retreat to the kitchen to regroup my nerves.

Watching from a distance, we can see that not just any bat flew into our apartment. No. We got the stupidest bat on the face of the planet. Countless times, it swoops toward the open window or door, only to return to our living room. Finally, by shear dumb luck, it dives out the window and our adventure is over.

It turns out Josh and I share a mutual fear of bats. Our complete and utter inability to handle this situation makes me afraid that, should we ever have children, they will be the kind of cowards that can't step on a spider for fear that it's friends will retaliate. I know I've always worried about that.

Anyway, we've concluded that Batman is probably a psychopath, because you would have to be to want to commune with these things.


  1. If I had both yours and Josh's fear I would have probably died of a heart attack at a very young age because many years ago our roof was basically home to a colony of bats. 1600 I believe, my parents called our local National Trust which is all about preserving the environment and they came and humanely removed the bats for us. They used gloves and a pillow case.


  2. LOL. This is such a funny story! I've never run into any bats myself in real life so I don't know how I'd react. I love the bit about being afraid to step on a spider for fear that it's buddies would retaliate. Thanks for making me chuckle! :D

  3. Lol. This happened at my house once when I was little! I remember my mom 'encouraging' the bat to find its way to the window with a broom!

  4. Lol! That's hilarious! When I was a kid there was a bat in the house. Since my dad wasn't home to deal with it we stayed at grandma's. But yes, my mother was terrified. I'm quite sure I would have reacted the same way you did. I know I freak when I see a mouse running across the floor and we can get away from them by jumping on a chair. Or counter. Or something. Bats though... not so much. Oh yeah!!! I just remembered when I was a kid and I was jumping on a friends trampoline a bat got stuck in my hair. It was so terrifying I think I purposely forgot the entire thing. I don't remember how it got out but it probably got untangled as I screamed bloody murder and jumped around. Or perhaps I fainted and the mother of my friend untangled it. Hmmm.. I will have to ask!

  5. Seeing a bat inside the house is something like seeing a possum. They look small, but creepy. I’m glad it found its way out on its own. Shooing it away could be a threatening gesture. It’s not smart risking both of your safety. I think you shouldn’t open that particular window until needed. Some critters tend to go back to the openings they once used. Check other parts of your house too! ;)


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