The Other Cat

I have another cat, but I don’t see her much because she is constantly hiding.  I call her Other Cat.

I understand that most cats have a nervous nature, but Other Cat behaves as if she were the sole survivor of some artillery-pocked WWI battlefield.

Any slight deviation from the norm will send Other Cat running for cover.

Minor rustling sound in the background = Kitty freak-out.

Anything that moves too fast = Kitty freak-out.

Slight change in barometric pressure = Kitty freak-out.

You get the idea.

Wife is the only thing that doesn’t seem to put Other Cat into a state of abject terror. Through means that I don’t fully understand, Wife equals happiness and safety for Other Cat. I, on the other hand, am treated like a kitty serial-killer. When Wife and I come home, we walk into the house and Other Cat is waiting. Wife usually enters first and Other Cat is happy.

Other Cat is content and safe. This is what I imagine Other Cat sees…

I walk in two seconds later and Other Cat is horrified. I have no idea what she sees, but it must be something close to this…

Other Cat’s world comes crashing down around her as I, The Dark One, enter the room. Other Cat flees and stays hidden for hours. This makes me feel terrible because I love animals. Until recently, I didn’t know why this happened.

I’ve thought about this pretty hard and I’ve come to the conclusion that Other Cat thinks I’m the Devil. This isn’t in a metaphorical or cheeky, fun type of way. Other Cat thinks I’m Satan. The reason for this is that Other Cat is an indoor cat. Her entire world is condensed to our house.

The population of the universe is Other Cat, Wife, me, and of course, Skittles. Skittles is a fat and terribly behaved cat, but she’s still a cat. Other Cat equates Skittles to the rest of the world’s kitty population; flawed, but mortal and redeemable. Now, Wife, being mostly nice to Other Cat, is seen as a Virgin Mary-type, saviour figure. This doesn’t leave me a lot of room on the theological scale. I, of course, fulfill the role of Lucifer to Other Cat.

Using the template of modern Christianity, the image of Wife and I entering the front door together becomes highly disturbing to Other Cat.  I assume she also finds our level of cooperation extremely distressing.

This is traumatic enough for Other Cat that her little kitty mind blocks out the experience shortly after it happens. This explains why she eagerly waits by the door the following day, completely oblivious to what’s about to happen. She’s doomed to relive the trauma five days a week or until she has a little kitty psychological meltdown.


Nearly every time that I get behind the wheel of a vehicle, I am reminded how much other people suck at driving.

I’m not really sure where the disconnect is. Maybe these people didn’t listen to their driving instructors when they were teens or maybe they have acute and uncontrollable spastic fits while driving.

Maybe they’re driving with an enraged were-beaver in the passenger seat.

Regardless of the cause, the end result is the same. I always find myself behind someone with the driving ability of a cucumber.

In addition to being a vegetable, I imagine that having a room temperature IQ only complicates things when you’re trying to decipher those fiendishly complex dials and controls near that wheel-thingy.

Car to a normal person.

Car to the intellectually challenged.

I know I can’t change the world, but I can at least survive it. Here’s some things to do to even the odds out there.

Here’s a technique that I use often. I call it the patience lesson. Often times, I’m followed by a person that is in such a hurry that they’re nearly ramming my car. I often speculate that the only thing stopping them from actually doing so is the threat of prison time and, of course, the forcible sodomy that goes with prison.

*I’ve never been to prison, but TV depicts it as one long period of continuous rape occasionally interrupted by brief instances of gang rape so that’s the image I portray to others.

If I’m lucky and fate smiles upon me, I get stopped at a red light with this person behind me. They often crowd my bumper all the way to the stop light as well. This is good because it helps me strengthen the trap.

When the light turns green, I just sit there and look at them in my rear view mirror and I feast upon their despair and woe. They scream and yell at me. They honk their horn and pound their dashboard as they realize they’ve gotten too close to my car and they can’t get around me. I drink in their rage. It is delicious. I usually wait for the light to turn red for 1.2 seconds and then I go. This gets me through the intersection (just barely) and it obliterates any chance of the tail-gater making the light.

Another way to improve your skills and thereby be more awesome on the road is to build up your tolerance with multi-tasking. Often times, highly skilled drivers can be knocked off of their game by something as trivial as answering a cell phone or solving a Rubik’s Cube.

Enter the distraction….

I say do these things often and in conjunction with each other. Try adding juggling and tatoo removal as well. With enough practice you could be a Jedi Master* at this stuff and driving will soon become the easiest thing you do in a car.

* While walking around in Florence, Italy I saw the driving equivalent of a unicorn shitting a glitter rainbow. There was a local bus driver adeptly turning his massive bus, at speed, down a Vespa-choked alley while smoking a cigarette AND talking on a cell phone. He missed me by mere centimeters, but I was still touched by his aura of awesomeness. Bravo, little Italian dude, bravo.

Another great way to be more awesome at driving is to add (you guessed it) PIRATES! Grab a few salty mercenaries, make a few modifications to the old Wagon Queen Family Truckster and voila! You’re ready to murder and pillage atop the asphalt!

The pirate car is equipped to deal with any and all road-related annoyances.

Got somebody that won’t stop tail-gating you?


Is some rich prick flaunting his new convertible as he passes you?


Are you stuck in traffic and late for your afternoon pillaging?


You will, of course, have to keep a sharp eye out for ninjas though. The pirate/ ninja war is still ongoing and don’t think for one second that pirates are the only faction that has developed murdering car technologies.


Back in college, I lived with a bunch of roommates. One girl was a Hooters (TM) waitress, the other was between jobs and the last guy was in a band.

I didn’t realize it at the time, but looking back now, I was definitely a slum lord.

More on this in a later post. Anyway, the aspiring rock-star roommate decided to get a cat. I guess he was nodding to history or something when named the cat Winston (yes, after the little fat man from England). Wife (then girlfriend) and I began taking care of the cat because aspiring rock-star roommate was about as nurturing as a desert.

We showered Winston with love and attention and it pretty soon decided that we were its new masters and the best thing since catnip.

One morning I got up and made my way to the bathroom to take care of business. I thought I had shut the door, but I had not.  I look down and see this.

I revert to reflex and orient on the movement below me. It was Winston. He thought my golden stream was a string to play with and was trying to “get it”. I could only imagine what was going through his head.

This was all pieced together in my head in roughly two seconds, but I was still urinating while facing Winston…

I peed all over Winston’s face; right in his big, blue, trusting eyes. Winston ran terrified out of the bathroom and straight to the only person who could save him from such an atrocity. Girlfriend was sleeping peacefully when she was awoken by a soggy kitten. It went something like this.

ME: Oh God…

GIRLFRIEND: Mmmm… Hey Winston. What’s the matter?



ME: I pissed on him, but I didn’t-


ME: I… I… I have no words…

It took several hours of reassuring to convince my girlfriend that I had not developed a very weird and specific form of sexual deviancy.

We scrubbed and washed Winston thoroughly, after we had burned the bed sheets.

That cat almost cost me my future wife.

Things You Don’t Expect

Things You Don’t Expect

I made dinner the other night. I actually pride myself on being a pretty good cook. I learned my trade at a fine establishment. You may have head of a little family themed restaurant called Hooters (TM). I had to stop working there because they wouldn’t take my calendar photo submissions any more.

Turns out, they don’t allow dudes in the calendar, no matter how sexy they are. Anyway, the wife and I were eating dinner when I was picking through my spinach and I noticed two beady eyes looking back at me from my leafy greens.

Puzzled, I uncovered this…

Later that night, after I had stopped my uncontrollable vomiting, I wrote a not-so-nice letter to a major vegetable producing corporation.

This whole event got me thinking. It was pretty bad that I had nearly eaten (near as I could tell) the carcass of a boll weevil. It could have been a lot worse though. I sat down and came up some worst-case scenarios for other products. Here’s the top five with illustrations for your comedic enjoyment…

#5. Eye drop medication replaced with pepper spray.

#4. Cactus filled with scorpion eggs.

#3. Toothpaste replaced with caulk

#2. Fire extinguisher filled with kerosene

#1. Over-the-counter sinus medication replaced with powerful hallucinogens.

Considering the possibilities, I’m glad that I only had a large insect in my food. I almost feel good enough about it to not pursue this in court… almost.

The Ultimate Question

I’ve spent a considerable amount of time and energy pondering the ultimate question… What is the best superpower to have if you could only have one?

There really are a lot to choose from. Many people think about being able to control the weather, turn invisible, etc. Here’s my top five.

#5. Invulnerability

Who wouldn’t want to be indestructible? On the surface, this sounds like the best one to have, but it has limitations. Invulnerability just means that you can’t be destroyed, period. It doesn’t say anything about actually being able to succeed at anything or, more importantly, your capacity to feel pain.

I imagine that after the first few hours of being trapped inside an active volcano, you’d start to rethink your superpower choice, but at least you’d live forever.

#4. Time travel

Another popular choice. With this one, you’d be able to do a little history research and then (somewhat reliably) re-shape the future. You could even travel to the future and then predict events in the present to your favor. The only downside I can see to this is the fact that history is full of dick-holes. Genghis Khan would be less interested in you personally and more interested in finding out if your head came off the same way as people from his time.

Travel through time at your own risk.

#3. Mind-reading

Here’s a classic. With mind-reading, nobody could hide anything from you. You’d be the ultimate interrogator and government agencies around the world would bid for your services. You’d be like a mind wizard.

A lot of research materials (comic books to the common folk) that I’ve read on the subject don’t really showcase an ‘off switch’ for this particular superpower. With that in mind, it would be wise to avoid insane asylums and large groups of mentally retarded people.

The effects could be permanent.

#2. Omniscience

This is a step up from mind-reading. There’s no point to reading minds if you know everything already. With omniscience, you truly would be the guru of everything.

This power would feel absolutely great and everyone would seek you out for your sage advice. You couldn’t expect to live very long though. It would only be a matter of time until you annoyed someone to the point of killing you. Think about how annoying the know-it-all at the party is. You’d be that guy to everyone, all the time.

Yeah, you’re days would be numbered.

#1. Telekinesis

I know… It doesn’t seem like a very good one, but here’s why it’s number one. With enough practice, you could move anything with your mind. Everything from a grain of sand to planets could be moved by your mind. This includes people too. What’s more, is that any person you manipulate would be completely aware of what you were forcing them to do. Imagine a hated business colleague stopping in the middle of a quarterly review presentation to strip naked and break-dance atop the boardroom table. The possibilities are endless.

As an added bonus, you could move yourself with your mind. Now you have the power of flight as well, an amazing two-for-the-price-of-one deal.

So, let’s review what we’ve learned…

#1. Superpowers are fucking awesome.

#2. See previous.

Summary complete.

The Escape at the Supermarket

When I was a kid, one of my favorite things to do was to run away from my mom while we were shopping at Walmart (TM).

This was immensely satisfying to me. I guess my mom thought it was harmless and that I would get it out of my system eventually, so she didn’t really do much to stop it. At first, I’d run off for only about 20 to 30 minutes at a time, but my prison breaks eventually got more frequent and longer in duration. During one such foray, I had made my way to the paper towel aisle and had constructed my fortress of solitude complete with home garden defensive weapons and provisions from the snack aisle.

This had gone on for quite some time.  My mom was tired of waiting on me and decided to teach me a lesson. She left the store and waited in the parking lot, confident that I would emerge minutes later, tears streaming down my face.

I was running low provisions and decided to restock on salty junk food and soda. I made sure the coast was clear and cautiously made my way outside. Mom had been in the frozen food section when I left, which meant that she would be in dairy by now. I decided to check up on her on the way to collect my supplies. Like Jane Goodall stalking her apes, I peered from the edges of the jungle to observe adult Walmart (TM) shopper society in search of my quarry. Mom was not there, however.

I looked at the check-out area. No mom there either. Now most other six-year-old children would be very upset at this point, but not me. I was happy. Moreover, most people were leaving and the store would soon be mostly empty. The only sensible thing to do was to start my own nation-state.

It wasn’t long before I had used the extent of my imagination and created my own society in the fruits and vegetables section complete with crime and punishment.

Things were going swimmingly until I began to attract unwanted attention. A crowd had started to gather around me. It turned out that the late-night shoppers did not approve of my Draconian interpretation of the law.

I was asked to leave.

And that was the first of many times in my life where I was proud to be escorted out of a Walmart (TM).

I hate this cat… I don’t know why I have it.

I was going through my weekday afternoon routine of excessive drinking and playing Rockband (TM) when I looked at one of my cats and I came to a conclusion…  I hate this damn cat.  As if hearing my thoughts the cat, Skittles, who was named by a three year old child, turned and looked directly at me.  This is a considerable effort for this cat considering she weighs in excess of 20lbs and has the physical activity level of a deep sea slug.

I stopped my fake guitar thrashing.  I stared at the cat in raw disbelief and came to an irrefutable truth.  I had owned this damn thing for three years and it had done absolutely nothing except cost time, money and patience; all things that I have in short supply.  The cat was mean, it was constantly shedding, it farted and when it felt like it, clawed the shit out of me.  I decided that I needed to get rid of Skittles.  First thing in the morning, she was going to be released into the wild where Mother Nature would decide her fate.  Unbeknownst to me, the cat somehow realized that something was amiss.

This put the cat into a depressive state.  About ten minutes later, my wife lets the cat onto our 2nd story balcony.  She had to come in to answer the phone.  As she passes me, she tells me jokingly;

WIFE: Watch the cat.  Make sure she doesn’t jump.

ME:  She’s too damn fat to jump.

WIFE: Yeah you’re right.

She walks by and I turn to look out onto the balcony and I see this.

Skittles leaps off the balcony.  I tell my wife.

ME: Uh, the cat just jumped.

WIFE: You’re not funny.

ME: That doesn’t change the fact that our fat fucking cat just committed suicide.

WIFE: Oh my God.

We go to look over the edge and I start thinking about how I’ll just bury the cat in our garden and I won’t have to deal with her anymore.  It’s cruel, but the cat problem just solved itself.  I look over the balcony railing and find something different.

Our cat had somehow broken the laws of physics and propelled her fat ass with such velocity that she cleared the driveway altogether.  She was now in the neighbor’s yard apparently just as surprised as to how she got there as I was.  The cat locked eyes with me and bolted off.  I turned to my wife.

ME:  Well, at least she’s alright.

WIFE: Yeah.

ME: Well, um, we did want to get rid of her.

WIFE: Well, yeah.

ME: Well we just don’t let her back in.  She’s now a neighborhood cat.

WIFE: Yeah, she’s probably much happier.

We continued on with our night, content that our cat was not only alive, but having wonderful adventures in the neighborhood and we didn’t have to let her back in the house.  Our doorbell rings and I answer the door.  There’s a little German girl standing there with our cat who had apparently clawed the shit out of her trying to get away.  The cat, however, seemed pleased that she was coming back against my will.  I don’t understand much German so this is what I hear.   

The cat was clearly taunting me.  Skittles seemed to know that I couldn’t tell the little girl that I didn’t want to own a cat, especially a cat as terrible as this one was.  I smiled and took the cat from her.  I felt a little piece of me die inside.  I closed the door and set the cat down.  It looked up at me in triumph.

I fucking hate this cat.