“I want to be just like my mom, except with fewer cats and figurines.” -Myself, 35
A few months ago, my mom purchased a pair of designer kittens. Even though I am really allergic to cats and the military previously inflicted torture upon detained terrorists by forcing them to drive with my mother (it has since been deemed inhumane by the current administration), I offered to take her to go get the little furballs. My mother amuses me and frankly, we had not spent much time together since I exited her womb and moved to a gated community.
I pulled into my mom’s driveway and she was sitting on her porch with a purple cat carrier on her lap, emblazoned in a matching sweater. I snickered and asked her if she had planned her ensemble the night before. She haughtily replied, “Oh look Erin! My cat carrier is the same size as your make-up bag.” I am truly a haven of altruism. I told her to get in the car and proceeded to duct tape her mouth shut.
This cat breeder’s house was so fucking far away, we drove to a part of Colorado that had not yet been stolen from Native Americans. I finally pulled into a muddy driveway guarded by a horse, some goats, ducks and two giant, smelly dogs who insisted I touch them. My mother was completely overwhelmed with unparalleled elation. I stepped in some variety of animal poo while wearing my new Steve Madden boots from his latest line and felt instantly sick.
The cat breeder led us into her house, while I silently prayed we would not end up in a wood chipper. She grasped one of the kitties by the fur on its neck and told us to look it in the eyes and blink repeatedly to show we were not a threat. Um okay. This only strengthened my postulation that cat people are fucking weird. I blinked a few times and nudged my mom to start dolling out the moola so we could boogie.
My plans were thwarted when Cat Lady launched into a long diatribe about what to feed them, not to let them outside, blah blah blah. My mom sat there taking diligent notes while I secretly sent pings off my cell phone, left my fingerprints on the table and dropped strands of my hair in case we went missing. Cat Lady finally arrived at the point in her sermon pertaining to feline discipline. According to her, in order to “discipline” cats, my mother would first need to gain their trust and then swiftly “kick them in the face” when they were doing something naughty.
My mom abruptly stopped taking notes and looked up puzzled. I started laughing because seriously, who the fuck kicks a cat in the face? That is like the most jacked up thing ever. I suddenly felt totally fine about paying an ungodly amount of money for these cats because clearly, this was a rescue.
Fast-Forward: Hans and Franz (no, I have no idea which one is which) have acclimated nicely to their new life of luxury. My mom dotes on them constantly and claims she only works to support them. I find this entirely plausible based on the fucking “catophia” her house has become.
At Thanksgiving, our entire family took turns going around the table saying what we were thankful for, my mom thoughtfully said, “Lexapro and her cats.” My kids stared at her with confused expressions. Tears and snot splashed into my gravy because I was laughing so hard.
A few days later, I received an email from my father informing me that he and my stepmom had gone over to meet Hans and Franz. He requested I forward pictures of the “outdoor cat spa” he had built for his cats to my mom, just in case she and my stepdad would like the design plans for their cats. I slowly pounded my forehead on the kitchen table.
W.T.F. No, no I am not bitter that you guys hated each other when I was growing up! Don’t be silly! I think it’s great you have cultivated a newfound friendship over your goddamn cats. The thousands of dollars and countless hours I spent in therapy….water under the bridge. I am totally over it. Totally.
Anywho, right before Christmas my mom called me completely exasperated. Apparently, she had asked my sister to come over and photograph her cats in little Santa Claus outfits. “Erin, I cannot believe how uncooperative they are being.” “Omg Mom- After all you have done for them? Did you try kicking them in the face?” “Erin, that is sick. Oh guess what? I couldn’t wait for Christmas so I let them have the heated beds I bought them early! They were so excited that Hans allowed me to give him a massage.” Yes. I am absolutely just as puzzled as you are that I am not a drug addict.
Okay. I have to go. I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season. Shine On You Sparkly Diamonds! Lots of love. XO