So I get into work Tuesday morning, look into my Big Book of Stuff and see that it's National "Rat Catchers Day", which instantly sent a chill up my spine.

Why, you ask?  Because I grew up on a farm, that's why.  Anyone who grew up having to shell corn knows exactly what I'm talking about.

See, rats LOVE corn.  And why wouldn't they?  It's tasty, abundant and easy to find...or used to be.  That was before the modern-age corn combine.  Today, corn is shelled from the ear right there in the field and then trucked directly to the grain elevator.

Back when I was growing up, we used to always pick the corn on the ears and then pile it up in corn cribs.  Later on we would then have to shell the corn so it could be sold when prices got high enough, or it was needed as feed for the livestock.

That's when we would open one end of the corn crib and start raking cobs into the sheller.  That was also about the time the rats would start to emerge from the pile in droves.

We usually always shelled corn in pairs...with one person raking the corn into the sheller and the other standing guard with a #12 scoop shovel in case a rat would run out.  That person's job was to beat the rat to death, leaving it for the dogs and cats to enjoy.

I can still remember the time when my Dad had a rat run up his pant leg.  It got up to his thigh before he was able to reach down and literally squeeze it to death.

Ever since then, I've been totally weirded out by rats...plus, their tail doesn't help matters either, all long and creepy and such.

So, when I got into work and saw it was "Rat Catcher's Day", my first reaction was to shiver in fear and squeal like a young school girl.

So, if you heard a weird shreaking sound at 4 am Tuesday and was wondering what it was...it was just me!