Reporters at a certain class of newspaper, the sleazier sort, have a folk-saying about "stories that are too good to fact-check."
It looks like the Mouse Flambée story might have been one of those...
FORT SUMNER, N.M. -- A small -town rumor that sparked world -wide interest about a mouse burning down a house has been found to be untrue. After 81-year-old Chano Mares's house burned down Saturday in Fort Sumner, news services picked up the quirky story.WSBTV.com - News - Flaming Mouse Story Found To Be False
Interest in fires has been high lately. Unseasonably dry and windy conditions have charred more than 53,000 acres and destroyed 10 homes in southeastern New Mexico in recent weeks.
The mouse story, however, has been doused by Mares.
"It's really humorous more than anything that a mouse burned down the house," he told KOAT-TV in Albuquerque. The mouse was dead when it hit the burning leaves.
Mares said he trapped and killed the critter and tossed it on the fire
The flames, he said, probably reached his house because they were driven by high winds.
Hat tip: Chap, in this comment here.