Last week, when my dentist told me that investing in an electric toothbrush was not an option, but rather an order, I was pretty sure there was no less fun way to spend $100.
I was wrong. Because you know what is less fun? Spending $138 at the vet, only to have your cat hiss at you and pee in the carrier.
Oh, Max. Max, Max, Max. Max has been chewing on himself again, and as much as I adore his idiosyncrasies and sympathize with his neurotic nature, having a cat that looks like he has leprosy isn't cool. So, yesterday when I called to refill his kitty Xanax and low-allergen food, I also asked if I could make an appointment. Lucky for me, they had an opening tonight. Unluckily for me, Max has apparently learned to read a calendar and understand my telephone conversations.
I always take the cat carrier out of the closet a few days before he has an appointment so that he won't associate the carrier directly with the dreaded trips outside his safety zone, but this time I didn't have a few days to lull him into a sense of false security. I don't think Madison's insistence on sleeping in the carrier, and remaining in it when I brought it downstairs (while Max was scarfing down his daily Mommy's-home-from-work snack) helped either. The minute I set it down, he looked up from his food bowl and bolted upstairs. A few seconds later, I heard him pound up the stairs to the third floor.
Instead of finding him lounging on top of the air conditioning vent in the bedroom, he was nowhere to be seen. I checked his very favorite hiding place, and there he was, huddled under the bed, against the wall. While Max hides under the bed everytime someone knocks on the door, when a large truck drives by, and on any date where the first of the month is a Thursday, I've never before had to extract him. It was quite an enlightening experience.
Our bed, which I purchased secondhand for $30, is an Ikea masterpiece. It has a queen-sized wooden frame, but doesn't need a boxspring, which is key when you live in a house so narrow that you have to hoist a mattress over the outside balcony. Instead, it has these wooden slats attached together by a ribbon that runs through them, which gives support to the mattress. Those Swedes, geniuses, I tell you. But I bet they never had to coax a neurotic cat out from underneath Dalselv. If they had, they would have thought twice about putting those supports down the middle of the frame. Sure, they're great for "structural integrity"... not so great when you're sweeping a broomstick across the floor in an attempt to herd a large, angry cat out of his hideaway. Pulling the broomstick out just enough to get it around the support gives Mr. Cat just enough room to squeeze past and hide against the wall. Wash, rinse, repeat. About 5 billion times.
I finally had to get down on my belly and squeeze under the bed myself, grabbing Max by the scruff of his neck and dragging it out. This was fun, because: 1. Max is large, 2. Max is surprisingly strong, 3. Max really doesn't want to come out, 4. you would not believe how dirty it is underneath a bed. But, I got him out, and with the help of a towel and a few glasses of wine, got him into the carrier. And then I remembered that Joel took my car to work, because his has a broken taillight and can't be driven until it is fixed, because he got a "repair" "order" from the "sheriff" last week. So we walked to the vet. Needless to say, peeing occurred the first time we passed an unfamiliar blade of grass.
And then we waited. And then, we got to see Condescending Jerk, DVM, because Nice Lady Vet is out on maternity leave. Still. SHE IS NEVER COMING BACK. WAAAAAHHHHH. There was some hissing and some growling from Max and some highway robbery for me. And then Joel came and got us and we went home and I feel asleep on the couch for several hours.
I was in need of a bit of humor, I'll admit, and the internet is never disappointing when you're looking for a little pick-me-up. Especially when you've posted an ad for a petsitter on Craigslist earlier in the day. There are so many people out there willing to come into my home while I'm on vacation, care for my beloved animals, and have wild sex on my kitchen table and steal all my Ikea furniture. It really warms my heart. If you need a little light in your life, just read on: