Tuesday, October 22, 2013

This is the End

I start this by noting that until he met me, Consort had exactly one pet in his lifetime. It was a spaniel named Brownie when he was a child. Brownie destroyed a few things and was sent by Consort's parents to live on that wonderful farm all obnoxious pets went to before 1980. Not only was he not used to animals, the man is allergic to cats. I repeat; CONSORT SPENDS EVERY DAY OF HIS LIFE SNIFFLING JUST SO I AM HAPPY.

Consort is a wonderful man. So wonderful, in fact, that he has never, not once, not even in a covert way, suggested he'd be happier with only bipeds in the house. Doesn't mean I don't think it, though. At least once a day I'll catch Consort running the defurring roller over a sweater, or blocking a cat trying to make a landing on the kitchen table, or letting the dog outside to pee for the fifth time in an hour (he's an old dog.).  I'll think to myself "That man never wanted pets." And then I Swiffer to atone. We go through a great many Swiffer pads. With all this in mind, I will tell you the following story. I will attempt to keep it dainty, but make no promises.

The cats, Diana and Squeakers, also known as the Merry Mistresses of Mayhem, have habits. One of these habits is that before they go to sleep for each night, they must mightily use the litter-box. Usually, I take care of any litter-boxish chores. If I feel like listening to whining and mutinous mumbles, I make the kid do it. I try very hard to keep this from being Consort's responsibility (See: Never Wanted Pets, above). But this late-night ritual, mystifyingly, must not happen while I'm awake. If I fall asleep at 9, it will happen at 9:30. If I stay awake until very, very late, with the specific intention of tending to this chore - because Consort has had an especially pet-laden day and doesn't need more - the cats will wait until late, late-thirty to finish off, as it were.

Consort inevitably stays up later than I do because he needs a quiet house to work so, all too frequently, he deals with it. Them. It's quite horrible. I feel terrible. He has sworn it's not that bad, because he's wonderful and also lies. Two weeks ago, I awoke early to find a note on the table. When one partner is a day-person and the other flies by night, a lot of your relationship is conducted by Post-It. The note said only "HAVE YOU CHANGED THE CAT'S FOOD?" I was baffled by this. Just because he's tolerant of our plethora of pets doesn't mean he notices their culinary details. Hell, Consort still refers to Diana and Squeakers as "The boys." So why would he even notice the cats had a different kind of --

Oh.

"The worst thing I've ever smelled in my life," Consort announced that evening, when we had a chance to talk, "And I've smelled death." And readers, I was left with a conundrum. The food was, of course, not cheap and need I even mention I had gotten the larger size? On the other hand, for weeks to come Consort was going to have to stop working on an Excel spreadsheet to confront genuine evil. (I'd suggest that just meant he was going from evil to evil, but Consort and I have agreed to disagree on the relative merits of Excel.)

The money! The odor! The waste! The odor! In the end -- you should pardon the expression -- there was no question of what do do. We went back to the regular spread. The food of evil emanations went to Sante D'Or who passed it on to a woman who feeds a feral population she's trying to get spayed and neutered. I figured it was healthy, the fish oil would help their shabby coats and if she did manage to catch them and wrangle them to the vet, they'll avenge their lost gonads in the stinkiest way possible.

11 Comments:

Blogger Maggieblue said...

We tried to change our old dog's food once and learned that lesson the hard and stinky way.

3:33 PM  
Anonymous Robin Raven said...

I still think Diana is one of the most adorable cats ever. :) Loved this. I think it should make it in to the sequel to "Pet Sounds." Hope all is back to normal for the kitties.

10:12 PM  
Blogger Marianne Arensmeyer said...

I thought my husband was the only person who ever used the word "gonads" in every day conversation. Or rather...in casual conversation. He does not talk about gonads EVERY day.

10:11 AM  
Anonymous Her Royal Thighness said...

LOL. I felt that way with my kid's diapers, when the pediatrician suggested soy formula!

12:58 PM  
Blogger Rosalita said...

I panicked when I read this title! I had the briefest thought that you were dropping the blog...
On that note, I do understand that diet changes can make a huge difference in the cat box: I adopted a gorgeous tortoiseshell 6 year old cat from the HS last September, over a year ago now, mind you. It took months for the overpowering odors to decrease (due to her new diet with us). She's worth it. (I married a saint, too. He does the kitty box chores...)

8:30 PM  
Blogger CHo Meir said...

I just found your blog. Very cute ☺. OMG do I know changing food and the gastric anomalies that comes with it. In my naked kidz defense, he does have food allergies and only after I started feeding him raw did the stinky poop issue subside.

1:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Romance Of The God Kind by dan phillips CR 2013

Look in the mirror and see your face
all stained with a look,guilty
Stop living here like it's the last place
it's only your temporal reality

There a thousand different ways to die
death hides as a danger,like a mystery
Stop looking through those lying eyes
seek the one who won the victory

Embrace the heart of His love story
The great romance of the God kind
Arms that reached down from glory
A love all humanity was created to find

Bring the light,into you're dark life
Imagine heaven,and what that will be like
to have joy unspeakable in the afterlife
in His embrace,changed to be Christ like

Don't wanna miss what eternity has to give
So give yourself,the gift of His grace
rejoicing in heaven with all the forgiven
envision,standing there before God's face

Embrace the heart of His love story
The great romance of the God kind
Arms that reached down from glory
A love all humanity was created to find

7:15 PM  
Anonymous Marianne said...

Wow. You don't see a lot of religious poems in the same comment streams as gonads and stinky cat poop. I think you've been spammed, Quinn.

9:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When I married my wife, she had one cat, which after over thirty years is where we are again. But we have had as many as four. I went to an allergist and got a series of shot to desensitize me. Sometimes I have issues with my eyes burning but not too much. I wonder if the farm Consorts dog went to is the same one my Cocker was sent to?

4:07 AM  
Anonymous Paula said...

What a lovely partner you have! I just re-read your book "Notes From The Underwire" and the story of Ursula was really drilled home to me. I kept some chickens this summer, and was lax about shooing them into the coop at night, letting them roost where they wished. Well, an owl got one of them. Needless to say, the guilt and shame were awful. The other three were hand carried into the coop after that, and then I found more responsible people to take them. Consort clearly understands his responsibilities that come with his commitment. Lucky you!

6:52 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not necessarily spam, Marianne. In fact I suspect this is what Consort recites to himself every time he has to clean the damn litter box.

1:33 PM  

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