What a novel name for a blog posting! Hmm..
This is my cat, Bert. Bert is the most affectionate cat I have ever been personally involved with. Many of my friends could attest to this claim, to be sure. It may have to do with the fact that before he was owned by me, he was owned by the ailing father of Adam, the ex-guitar player for the math rock phenoms known as Butterknife, who at some point in time went to the hospital for an extended stay due to, well, medical problems, I suppose. I do not really know. Guess I never really thought to ask. What an asshole I turned out to be. To prove this claim, I will effortlessly continue telling my story with absolutely no regard for Bert's previous owner. Did he die? Is he still sick? I don't fucking know. Why don't you go ask him?
It so happened that Bert, our fucking hero, was somehow sequestered into the garage at this man's house for literally months when the man went to the hospital. I am not sure of the exact length of time, but I remember the term "six or seven" being thrown around, and quite loosely, I might add. I do not know how he survived. Presumably, Adam went over there once a week and emptied a bag of Meow Mix into a dusty old metal dog dish that was put back into service when someone was too lazy or inconsiderate to get Bert his own bowl, which incidentally is how many pets define themselves, they'll thank you to know. Surely Bert must have had to eat around the dried and dirtied crickets legs that always seem to end up floating in water bowls and collecting at the bottoms of food containers. It's amazing that crickets can ever jump, being as frivolous as they appear to be with their legs.
Maybe once a month Adam would take the litter box that was cracked in the middle and sort of half-cautiously, half-carelessly dump it behind a bush in the backyard and kind of kick at it from the bottom until the big clumps of urine mache would come unglued from the box, and fall to the ground slowly, like a giant tree falling from the forest canopy. Maybe there was no litter box at all. Why don't you ask the garage? Alone in his prison of old chains, containers of bonemeal, piles of nails used as a paperweight for ancient, yellowing pornography, what did Bert do, there in the dark? Amidst the maddening hum of a barely working freezer (they call it an "icebox") that housed nothing but venison steaks and cartons of Dorals, what happened to Bert?
For one thing, Bert became very co-dependent on his next owner, me, and, once he trusted me and those closest to me, became the most affectionate cat in the land. Sure, it's an endearing quality that stems from a life of tragedy, but I think both parties are satisfied with the outcome. He gets an owner that doesn't torture him (except for the few times that Steve and I raced him and Poe, Steve's cat, around the apartment by putting socks over their heads- they'll back out of 'em for hours!), and I get a cat that comes when I call him.
But during his bid upstate, Bert developed a problem. It's true. He can't help it. He is compelled to eat plastic sacks. He also likes licking deodorant from armpits, turpentine from stained jeans, and ink from dirty palms. It is a compulsion, a curious feline drive likely developed from his tenure as an unwilling garage dweller. He tends to only go after the sacks when he is hungry, which is any time there are not at least three pieces of Deli Cat in his food bowl. This usually occurs in the early morning, and it is quite often that I awake to the sound of rustling plastic, look around blearily and yell, "Bert!" This sends him tearing off under the bed. He also commences to tearing when he has to poop and he knows I know. Understandably, he is very self-conscious about his defecating habits.
But, often I will return home and find waiting for me what appears to be a shining, white turd. It is not a turd, however. It is vomit. It is the vomit from a cat whose stomach, as much as he wants it to, will not digest manufactured plastic products. This does not keep him from trying, though.
More than likely, this affliction may have been what kept him alive lo, those many months in the garage of a dying man. And he should be revered for his bravery during that dark age. But I fully expect to walk into my room someday after work and see this:
At least he will have died a hero. Oh wait, no, that's hobo. Heroes don't eat trash. Bums do.
P.S. If I get any comments about cat litter or cat boxes on this post simply because a few key words were mentioned that alerts your blog reader that I might be interested in your shitty business, I will personally murder my own cat. How's that?