Conversations With Opie

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I used to be smitten with a  pair of cats; Opie and The Mysterious Germoe. After a while a third cat, Funky Ear Tony came to live with them. They lived in a house called, The Fear and Loathing, in Oakland, California. Sadly, their parents distanced themselves from me and I still don’t know why. Ouch. That’s fodder for another, more serious blog, I suppose. It’s water under the bridge now because they all moved to Georgia and they live in a lovely house called, Hope Springs and I only catch up on their adventures through Facebook.

Anyway, Opie, a very floofy ginger, used to get his treats from a little egg that would roll across the floor. (I suppose he still does, it’s just that someone else does it now) They would drop out one by one and it was very exciting for him to chase them. (Exercise) He also has very thick Maine Coonish fur. This is a typical exchange. You will relate if you have cats, if you have cats with thick coats that toss up hairballs or have tried to take photos of your pets only to watch them move as you click the shutter.

ME: Hey Op. Now that you have had your “exercise” chasing the magic egg around the floor and gobbling the treats that fell out of it, how about you let me brush you?

OPIE: More treats!

ME: No Op. You got quite a few this time. I gotta cut you off! No exploding Opie, Ok? How about a good brushing?

OPIE: *Rubs against his Pet Nanny*  Lots of pets?

ME: *gives Sir Fluffalot a good scritch*  Of course, you may have all the pets you like, but you are looking pretty woolly little dude. I’m going to brush you too!

*rubs sturdy brush over Opie’s fluff but not much happens*
*Opie exhibits the cat version of a shrug, sniffs brush. Rubs chin on it.*

OPIE: Oooooh scratchy! *continues to rub the brush.*

ME: Let’s try brushing again

OPIE: *Shrug. Rub. Scratch*

ME: *Tries again to brush Opie thoroughly*  What the heck Op? Your fluff is like armor! My brush is powerless against it. I got like three loose hairs! Where do all those orange hairballs come from if your fuzz doesn’t come loose?

OPIE: *looks nonchalant*

ME: Ok. Well, while I have your attention you photogenic rascal, let me just grab my phone and get a picture for your parents who miss you!

OPIE: Ok.

ME: Cool! Got it! Oh that’s so cute. Let me just get it into focus and *click*

*Opie has walked away*

ME: Cats! *sigh*

LM 2015/2017

Opie

The Inimitable Opie!

 

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Conversations With THE KITTY! (In A New Place On Moving Day)

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This is LiLi, the cat of many names. AKA Merph, Merphy Brown, Captain Merphlepoof, Monkey Butt and of course, Grumpitha to name a few. Alas! If only I’d had a computer at the time, we could have beat that Grumpy Cat to fame and fortune!

Merph: What the hell Mom?
But wait. ALL our stuff is here so this isn’t a sleepover spot. But why is the bed surrounded by towers of boxes? I’m not sure if this is adequate or not. You sure are lucky that I’m so good with new environments!

Me: At least, “Stompy McStomperson” (our former loud housemate) isn’t here. Oh boy, but wait until you hear the garage door!

LiLi aka Merph: I don’t know what a garage door is, but MY bed is here which I will share with you. In other words I will sleep with my butt in your face.

Me: Okay. Thanks?

LiLi: By the way this “view” is fantastic!
(Kitty sarcasm)
So, Puuurrrrrrr.

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The fantastic view!

Me: Don’t be mad. I can’t figure out where your food bowls and your toys are. I just checked with my client and she says I didn’t leave them behind. Maybe they are in the trunk of the car.

LiLi: This is most inadequate. I demand that you go find them at once!

Me: Maybe when it stops raining. I just changed my clothes. The ones I was wearing are soaking wet.

LiLi: What is it about, “At Once!” that was not clear?

Me: How about I make the bed?

LiLi: I not purr now.

Me: Tough love. Tough love.

 

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Once again, trapped under a kitty.

It turns out that Merph is completely nonplussed by our bedroom being over the garage. That big noisy gate doesn’t even make her ears twitch. Frankly, it’s soothing compared to all the noise at the last few places we lived. The rain sound is not the best, no roof, just water slapping pavement, but it’s not the worst either. It’s nicer when I close the window.) 

 

 

(A little while later)

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Merph: You find my food bowls yet?

Me: It’s still raining. I have to go look in the car.

Merph: Inadequate. Most Inadequate!

Me: Besides, how can I do anything when you are on my lap?

Merph: Magic! Duh.

 

Me: I can’t even make the bed because you won’t move.

Merph: I helping!

Me: Cats seriously have a strange idea if what, “helping” means.

Merph: Bowls now?

Me: *bonk*

(And later that day….)

Me: (finally) Merph, I found your food bowl, your crunchies and your toys.

Merph: Eh. I’m busy sitting in this basket.

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Put down a basket, even a smooshed one, and voila, in goes a cat! It must be in their DNA.

Me: Loooook, I filled your water bowl!

Merph: Yeah, I might get to that later.

Me: OK then, I’ll just put this catnip away.

MerphCATNIP!!!!

boxes and boxes

Yes, and this is me, a short while after the movers left. And yes, those are boxes, boxes and still more boxes! I confess, it’s been a year and some still aren’t unpacked.          

-LM 2016 / 2017

#Derailed

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This poem is fairly self explanatory. Those of you that write will understand this vexation, I’m sure. It’s not the same as writer’s block, it’s when you have plenty in your head to write then something irritates you so much that you soon realize your concentration like Elvis has left the building! I always try to deal with stress creatively and with humor. I felt better after writing this.

Derailed

‪#‎DERAILED‬

I started out my evening dressed in warmest brown
But now I’m feeling cold as bones and frankly, a bit down
Since fate had decreed that tonight I’d be alone
I figured I’d hunker down and get some things done
I found a place to write and have some citrus tea
A nook with nondescript music playing quietly
I cracked my notebook, uncapped my pen, pondered what I’d sew
I sipped my tea and just like that, words began to flow
Until the speaker above my pate phased in and out and crackled
And irritating, upbeat music started blaring out of it quite loud
I tried to press on past my second paragraph

I couldn’t concentrate so I tried a change of habitat
The waitress, sweet, apologized and went to turn it down
But the muse had packed her sumptuous bags and moved right out of town
And now I just feel empty, frustrated and beat
And the story in my head remains a partially sprouted seed
All I really wanted was a bit of quiet time
But now I think I may need chocolate, I think I may need wine

-LM September 2015

Songs of The Stomach Bard: Nostalgic Regrets

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MaggiesBefore I moved to my current city I had a house-sitting gig here for a couple of months. Every time I would be coming back to the place I would pass this cute little building on a corner that looked like it should be a firehouse or even a small filling station but it said, Maggie’s over the front door so it had to be a cafe.

After I moved I forgot about it. Then I drove past it a week ago and had an, “Oh yeah, that place!” moment and decided to look it up. Turns out it’s been around for years and is a breakfast and burger spot so I decided I would get there early enough one day to check it out.

The parking lot was fairly desolate when I went in, I parked next to an old sedan that I’m betting belonged to an employee. As I got out an old truck pulled up and the owner whom I could tell from a distance had few teeth left rolled the window down for his dog and gave me a long stare. For a moment I thought, maybe this is close enough, but then I shrugged that off and entered.

maggies jukeboxThe place was seriously retro-divey! Old school vending machines, a jukebox and a red and possibly once white, checkered floor. The walls were covered with old movie memorabilia. Two booths sat empty under one window and there were a few tables littered about.

maggies codgersMost of the seating was on stools that were slightly too low following a long L shaped counter. Seated to my left with their backs to me, a gaggle of old fogies.

I took a seat at the other end of the L.

It was obvious this place was going to put the grease in greasy spoon! A smiling sunny waitress named Arlene obliged me with a cup of coffee that looked dubiously old but tasted fresh. The owner, Ed was at the grill filling the place with the smell of sizzling murdered cow. I shouldn’t have, but I had to order a cheeseburger. Maybe it was the pressure of the clutter surrounding me, maybe it was the feeling of nostalgia. Maybe it was the caffeine kicking in. Maybe the bus boy mopping the floor while I scanned the menu just made me nervous. “Order the burger” demanded the voice in my head. So I did.

maggies grill

The fries were really good, sliced with the skins on them. I asked Arlene if she had any dressing I could dip them into and she beamed, “We have ranch dressing! Home made!” “Perfect! I’ll try it!” I’m partial to dipping french fries in blue cheese dressing rather than ketchup. It’s something my brother got me hooked on when we were kids! The ranch worked fine. And when I told her how good it was it seemed to make her day! “Thank you! I make it myself from scratch!”

Maggies burgerThe burger by the standards of burgers you get at restaurants these days was not great but it was strangely satisfying. I had ordered it medium well and the cook had actually managed that state. It was greasy yet slightly dry and had some tough spots. All the toppings were just kind of perfect. It was a burger of small town childhood memory, a time machine. But sometimes you can’t go back, or at the very least you shouldn’t and my stomach was going to be the first to remind me of that.

maggies memorobeliaAs I sat in the car feeling my first twinges, Arlene came running out the door with my sweater. It had been warm that day but I had taken it in just in case the place had air conditioning. (It didn’t.) Please angry stomach. Let me make it home before you make me pay, I pleaded!

My stomach said, ok, just this once but first I’m gong to sing to you and you have to write this down word for word! Deal?

I whimpered and complied. Thus The Stomach Bard was born!

“You may think you had a nostalgic lunch
And that greasy meat was fun to munch
But you are so very wrong
And so I wrote you this song…..

You are going to live to regret this
You are going to be sorry you et it
When you spend an unwanted hour in the looooooo
While I rain intestinal distress down upon you

Boop boopie do

Boy oh boy I hope it was worth it
Remember that when you drop that nuclear sh**
Will you never learn
As the stomach turns

You are going to live to regret this
You are going to be sorry you et it
This is why the vegetarian lifestyle was so much better for you
Maybe next time you’ll choose “garden” instead of “moo”

Boop boopie doobie gurgle doo wah wah”

-LM’s tum tum 2015

maggies superman

Mini Conversations: Life With People Who Are Nothing Like Me

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funny-dogs-bbq-hot-dogsI have a Housemate who has pretty much nothing in common with me. Same goes for his girlfriend who has her own apartment, but pretty much lives here. It’s not that I don’t like them but they aren’t easy to live with and they take up the whole space. This is one of the reasons we don’t keep a third housemate for long. Sometimes I think we could be a sitcom around here. “Comedy gold.” *cough*

Note: I refer to my Housemate as Hades, because he plays the game Smite as Hades, he leaves the thermostat all the way up constantly, and really, he is the roommate from Hell. I call his lady, The Girlfriend aka Princess Brattipantz, because that sums up exactly how she behaves and it makes me laugh.

Hades is BBQing. I’m in the kitchen making a salad and a long overdue pot of coffee! The Girlfriend is popping in and out of the kitchen and the living room where she has the TV blaring.

The Girlfriend:You don’t eat much meat do you?
Me: Nope. We don’t actually need meat, you know. I eat it in moderation.
Hades: *waving a hot dog in my face* I LOVE meat! It’s good for you!”
The Girlfriend: Don’t make too many hot dogs. You’re the only one eating them! They’re expensive!
Me: Hot dogs shouldn’t be expensive! They’re made of all the crap parts!
Hades: If I don’t eat them now I’ll heat them up later and they’ll be already grilled! Mmm!

The girlfriend is sitting on the couch watching, The Prancing Elites, a reality show about a gay male dance troupe from the south. She’s giggling at the pretty makeup on the boys and being sad when one has their house burned down.
The Girlfriend: They live in the south (insert frownie face emoticon)

This is a cut above the reality twaddle she usually watches.

The two of them are doing their usual Bickersons routine which is admittedly kind of cute! Either that or it’s just my stockholm syndrome kicking in.

Hades popping off with lines like:

“I DEFINITELY told you I will eat Mac n cheese or salad but I won’t eat both.”

“Woman!”

“Fine then! I’ll burn your piece of chicken!”

Oh those kids. They’re too much!

In the midst of prepping my own food, I’m following the hurricane that is Hades, around the kitchen, putting caps back on bottles, removing trash and recycling from the floor and counter, etc.

Hades comes in, opens a drawer that is right at shin level, pulls out the foil and walks away. A few minutes later I see the drawer is still open, foil on the table and Hades standing in the living room mouth agape at the pretty gay guys!

ME: So hey, this is my life of wonderment on a daily basis. I mean here you are, a big strong man but you don’t have the strength to close a drawer after you open it. Is it weak wrists or something?

Brattipantz laughs.
Hades comes into the kitchen to see what I’m talking about.

Hades: That wasn’t me!

Me: Dude! I just watched you open the drawer, pull the foil out and walk away. You should get a test for early onset Alzheimer’s!

Hades: Oh yeah.

Then he closes the drawer and goes back to watch tv.

This is why I live in my room. Sometimes I just don’t want to see it.

Conversations with THE KITTY: I Claim This for Catlandia!

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LiLi has been a little clingy since I came home:

I claim this lap

LiLi: I on your face!
Me: Mmmph hack. LiLi I’m trying to sleep, but not the big sleep, ok?
LiLi: I claim this lap for France!
Me: Not a good idea. Now, Mom needs to pee.
LiLi You walk here. I walk here.
Me: CAT! Aaargh!
LiLi: I lean against you now. Now I lean against this side! Your foot, it is my pillow! Now your knee, it is my pillow! No.Don’t get up! You are not allowed to get up!
Me: LiLi, I’m just going downstairs to get something to eat!
LiLi: Nooooooooo! I shred your pillow! Oh damn! You trimmed my claws!
Me: I’m just going downstairs! I’ll be back in 10 minutes!
LiLi: *checks watch*
Me: LiLi you don’t have a watch
LiLi: *grumpy face*
Me: See I’m back.
LiLi: This is most inadequate
Me: Here. You can sit on my lap
LiLi: Don’t want your lap.
Me: Fine: I’m going downstairs and cleaning some of Hades’ mess so I can have room to make tea.
LiLi: Unacceptable! When you come back I put my butt in your tea!
Me: *sigh*
*returns with tea*
LiLi: You walk here. I WALK HERE!
Me: Dammit this is hot tea!
LiLi: FEAR ME!
Me: Ok. LiLi. I fear you. Can I just sit down and make this cup….
LiLi: I put my butt in your tea cup.
Me: *Narrowly saves teacup from cat ass incursion*
( Hey, putting THAT on my band name list for sure!)
LiLi: LOVE ME!
Me: LiLi! Come on. Just let me get settled.
LiLi : I claim these legs for Catlandia!
*plop* *chirp*
Me: My leg is asleep. Mooooove
LiLi: My Butt it is on you!

Another Friday night over before it’s begun!

Conversations With THE KITTY: How Could you leave me?

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you'll never leave me*Often I am able to take my cat with me when I have house-sitting assignments but recently she had to endure several weeks of her human coming home to feed and care for her and then leaving again. When I came home to stay she was beside herself. She purred for days on end and had to be on me or next to me at all times.

 I come into the house after my housemate and I do the big car shuffle. Just inside the door I hear LiLi all the way from upstairs!

LiLi: Mom? Mom! Mom!
ME: I’m coming.
LiLi: Now! Hurry up!
ME: I’m coming. Hang on.
LiLi: Not fast enough! Moooooom!
ME: Gimme a minute. Mom has to use the litter box for humans!
LiLi: Nooooooooow!
ME: Damn! The Girlfriend is in there. Ok. You first.
LiLi: Open the damn door already! I WANT MOM!

*Entering the room cat and human run into each other’s arms in slow motion, which means what actually happened is I plop down on the bed and LiLi puts her butt in my face*

LiLi: Pppppppuuuuuuuuuuur! I put my butt in your face!
Me: Yeah. Mommy missed you too!
LiLi: PPPPPUUUUUUUURRRRR: I crash my head into your boobs now!
Me: Well, I’ll just rub your ears, Ok?
LiLi: You will never leave me again!
Me: I wish I could promise that Merph!
LiLi: You made me drool with happiness! Rub my belly!
Me: I hate to interrupt the love fest Lounge Monkey San, buy I need to pee and bring in my groceries from the car!
LiLi: No! I sit on you now!
Me: I’ll be back, really. Look! I let Hades block Stacey the car in! I can’t go anywhere!
LiLi: Merrrrr This is most inadequate.
Me: Merph. Mom has to do stuff. You have to deal.
LiLi: You do not fear me adequately.
Me: *sigh* I fear you. I have tremendous fear of you, Ok? Can I get my groceries now?
LiLi: Most inadequate. When you return I shall put my butt on you. You will be ex-purr-minated!

expurrminatemy dalek likes to hide in boxes