The Mouse Trap


Dietrich Fischer – TRANSCEND Media Service

A mouse peeked through a crack in the wall and saw the peasant and his wife open a package. “Interesting to see what food is in the package,” thought the mouse, but he began to shake upon seeing the pair taking out a mousetrap.

The mouse went out in the yard and began to cry out, “There’s a mousetrap in the house, a mousetrap!!”

The hen clucked and, raising her head, said, “Respected mouse, I know that it is an unfortunate situation for you, but for me it’s really not that important.” The mouse headed straight for the pig in the yard, who appeared sympathetic, but who said, “I’m so sorry, mouse, but I can’t do anything except pray for you.”

The mouse headed for the cow, but she received him in scorn: “I believe you are in danger, but what can I do?”

Sad and frightened, the mouse returned to the house to deal with the mousetrap on his own. At night he heard a click, such as when a mousetrap closes. The wife of the peasant jumped from bed to see what was caught in the trap. In the dark she didn’t see that it was the tail of a poisonous snake that was caught in the device. The snake bit her, and she was transported to the hospital. She was treated and returned home with a high temperature.

We all know that in the case of a fever the best treatment is chicken soup. The peasant slaughtered the hen and made the soup. Neighbors and friends visited the sick and took turns in staying with her. In order to feed them, the peasant had to slaughter the pig. The woman was near death, and after not much time she died. Many acquaintances came, and for the meal after the funeral the peasant had to slaughter the cow.

Next time you hear that someone has a problem which does not touch you, think again.


Dietrich Fischer (1941-2015) from Münsingen, Switzerland, got a Licentiate in Mathematics from the University of Bern 1968 and his Ph.D. in Computer Science from New York University 1976. Fischer was a MacArthur Fellow in International Peace and Security at Princeton University 1986-88, has taught mathematics, computer science, economics and peace studies at various universities, and been a consultant to the United Nations. He was co-founder, with Johan Galtung, of the TRANSCEND Network for Peace, Development and Environment in 1993.

Excerpted from Dietrich Fischer’s Stories to Inspire You – TRANSCEND University Press-TUP.


This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 8 Aug 2022.

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