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 --


"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.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Same As It Ever Was

Here's the problem with waiting to write until something worth writing about happens: something worth writing about has to happen. Or, rather, if you're me, something worth writing about which hasn't happened numberless times before.

Earworm holding me hostage? We've covered that. (Although I would love a moment of renewed pity  as I've been listening to "Istanbul (Not Constantinople)" carom around my head all day.)

My love of a classic (read: stunningly dull) wardrobe contrasted with my need to simultaneously worship and make fun of VOGUE magazine? I believe you know how I feel about that.

My vague desire to adopt yet more animals? Well, good Lord, I got an entire book out of all the blogs I've written.

I mean, there are new things. Blogger is eating comments and indicating I've deleted them, which I haven't, but that strikes me as a less than completely captivating subject. Although if it was your commment, please know that I DIDN'T DO IT AND AM ABOUT TO SIC CONSORT ON FIXING IT. Which could lead to the blog "Consort swears when he fixes things". But guess what? Yes, I've covered that. It's just all so humbling.

Sure, I can intellectually say that we're born with a set of specific character traits and only by possessing  a heroic will or living in a war zone might change these traits, but it's another thing to realize that I am almost exactly the same person I was ten years ago. Actually, it gets worse; I realize my quotidian wardrobe was set in the 9th grade when the best-dressed girl in class was Lisa Katz, who wore 501s, loafers and striped shirts. My closet is still being informed by someone whose greatest life-struggle was Geometry and whose president was Reagan.

Yes, there are new things. www.learningdangerously.com is new and, if I say so myself, pretty darling and useful. If you're thinking about homeschooling, if you wonder why anyone does, or if you just want some of the tools homeschoolers use for their families to supplement your child's education, go see the website. Honestly, go see it even if none of those apply to you, because you can see video of me and see what our home office looks like when it's clean. When we shot this, Daughter came into the office and said "I've never see the office like this!" She then pointed to the corner where I had haphazardly jammed all the stuff which was usually strewn about and said flatly, "Now that, I recognize."

And there are other things I've been bashing away at, but the former actor in me is superstitious enough so that you'll hear about it when and if a contract is signed. Backsies on good news is never a fun conversation. Ooh! Here's one. I bossed Consort into being vegan and it seems to be helping him. He's not congested in the mornings and an old injury hurts less. On the other hand, I slide out of the house at least once a day to sneakily eat something which could be best described as "Butter in a Light Butter Sauce", the kid has informed me that almond-milk cheese is just weird, and Consort has been quoted as saying, bleakly, "I'm a little tired of hummus." I know, baby, I know. Here, have some salad.

This means I'm cooking more than I was, which is easy because when you start at zero, anything above that looks impressive. In sum, I'm back. And no better than ever.