Al-Cat-raz

Sometimes, I forget that the house pets we have casually strolling around our houses, are still primal creatures at heart. No matter how much we want to spoil them and dress them up in goofy clothes and feed them delicious treats, they will always have those primal instincts. And those primal instincts can make for some hilarious encounters.

In my household, I like to compare my two cats to two prison inmates. My older cat, let’s call her the Black Panther, is the old, wise, hardened inmate who is serving life without parole. My other cat, let’s call her Fat Cat, is akin to the chubby twenty-five year old who still lives in his mom’s basement, got busted for distributing porn, and is now serving time in federal prison.

Black Panther is your typical badass hunter cat. She spends most of her time outside killing rodents, snakes, and lizards. She was ambushed by two dogs once, and let’s just say it ended with both dogs whimpering off and bleeding from their noses.

Fat Cat spends most of her time begging for food. The time that she isn’t begging for food, she is sprawled out on the couch like a blob, or hiding under a bed because she heard the wind blowing too hard outside. I’m sure if she ever came into contact with a rat, she would get the butt mud brutally beaten out of her.

Black Panther is the alpha and Fat Cat is the beta. It’s been this way since day one. When Fat Cat first trembled her way into our house from PetsMart, she was swiftly smacked into a wall by Black Panther. (If you’re thinking ohhhh, poor Fat Cat, don’t. Because this cat is a spoiled dingleberry.)

Black Panther is a very honorable animal and if you show her respect, she shows you respect. I’m sure all she wants is for Fat Cat to stand up for herself, and she would accept her. But over the years, Fat Cat has just taken the beatings, silently plotting behind the scenes. She knows she can’t stand toe to toe with Black Panther, so she has begun to resort to other means.

The change in behavior started a year or so ago. Black Panther was sleeping gracefully on the couch while my family and I were watching TV. Fat Cat had just finished her fourth or fifth meal and was meandering (or waddling) over to us. Although, she stops in her tracks once she sees Black Panther. Figuring she would just slink off to beg for more food or hide under a bed, we thought nothing of it. But suddenly, she jumps up, right next to Black Panther, and stares at her intently. Black Panther senses the movement, opens her eyes, and sees Fat Cat. She hisses, and like always, Fat Cat moves away to the other side of the couch. But Fat Cat keeps her eyes on Black Panther. She waits until Black Panther is asleep again, and creeps expertly over to her. We have the TV paused now and are watching to see where this goes.

Fat Cat walks right up to Black Panther until she is standing directly over her. Then, extending her fat little paw over Black Panther’s head, she swipes down and smacks Black Panther as hard as her grotesquely overweight body can manage. It was a textbook prison attack, with Fat Cat’s claws serving as the makeshift shank. Black Panther screams in anger and jumps into attack position as fast as she can manage. Although, she is a step slow from being engaged in such a deep sleep just seconds earlier, and Fat Cat is nowhere to be seen.

That little bastard had darted out of the room faster than I had ever seen her move. I couldn’t believe what I had just watched. A premeditated cheap shot from a cat. This creature had the thought process to become angry from being beaten on by Black Panther, realize she can’t beat her in a fair fight, and decide to wait until she’s asleep to attack her. And then ran away to avoid the repercussions. Just that realization of how intricately planned the attack was, and by such a simple little overweight cat, is hilarious.

Now that I think about it, I should probably stop calling her Fat Cat. And I should probably sleep with my door closed…

Dental Conversations

On Friday, I have to go to the dentist. Friday is going to suck, because the dentist sucks. The thing is, I actually don’t mind getting my teeth cleaned. What I do mind, is that while my mouth is wide open and being cranked on by the hygienist, I have to engage in small talk. For whatever reason, every hygienist I’ve ever had, has thought it was a good idea to ask about my life story while they have their fingers shoved into my mouth.

Every time I go, it’s the same situation. My mouth is gaped open and filling up with saliva. My eyes are nearly watering from jaw soreness. My teeth are being scraped on and my mind is elsewhere, trying to focus on anything but the excavation site that is my mouth. If there was ever a time when talking was not really an option, it’s now.

Yet, as always,

“So, what school do you go to?”

The hygienist says this without ceasing her assault on my mouth.

Me: Aaaaagghghhg.

Her: Oh okay, my niece goes there! What classes are you taking?

Me: Aghghh, ghhh, hhnnnggg, uhhh, euuhhahhh, ahhh hnnggahh.

Her: What was that?

Me: Aghghh, ghhh, hhnnnggg, uhhh, euuhhahhh, ahhh hnnggahh.

Her as she finally takes her hands out of my mouth: You know, that’s really great. You’re going to learn so much! What are you planning on doing after college?

Me: Well, I have—

She then shoves her hands back into my mouth, listening intently.

Me again: Ahhhggg ghhhdggh hnnnggg.

Her: That’s awesome! Sounds like you are following your dreams! What sports are you interested in?

This silly exchange continues throughout the appointment until she is done with my teeth and I am finally put out of my misery. As she cleans up and we schedule my next appointment, I always want to ask her: So, how does your niece like Aaaaagghghhg University? Or: Do you know any hnnggahh tutors?

But, I hold my tongue. One of these days, I will get the courage to mess with her. Maybe I will do it once I graduate and become a practicing Ghhhdggh hnnnggg.

Free Samples

Now, I know most children are innocent, pure, and uncorrupted, unlike the rest of us, but let’s just be honest here for a second.

Some of those little bastards are as rotten as milk left in the sun.

I mean, some of them might as well have chest hair, a beer in their hand, and a cigarette in their mouth. The amount of hostility and calculation they can display at such a young age is extremely alarming. For example, the concept of blackmail is not something I would expect a small child to understand, let alone execute with optimum effectiveness. Yet, there I was the other day at the store, watching it unfold before my eyes.

Two little kids, who I assumed were brothers, were on the same aisle I was on. Their mom was at the end of it on the phone with somebody. They couldn’t have been much older than kindergartners.

One of the brothers looks to make sure his mom isn’t going to interfere with his master plan before turning to his brother and telling him to open one of the chip bags. The other brother refuses. The first brother, let’s just call him Turdsniff McGee, goes on to explain how the store allows free samples of the food so you can see if you want to buy it or not.

I forget about the Pringles I’m examining and start paying closer attention to Turdsniff, curious as to where he’s going with this. (Yeah, I could’ve told them not to do it but what would be the fun in that?)

So, the other brother is apparently persuaded pretty easily, which is pretty in line with normal kid behavior, unlike his brother, and tears open a Lay’s bag and starts munching.

Turdsniff McGee immediately points and goes, “Ooooh, you’re stealingggg!”

A look of fear comes across the other brother’s face as he realizes he has been deceived. Meanwhile, the mom is still way down at the other end of the aisle, talking on the phone, and hasn’t even looked to see if her kids are still around. It’s starting to make sense now why Turdsniff is such a P.O.S.

I’m not even holding the Pringles anymore, I’m just watching intently, thinking in my head: Oooooooh, you’re in troubleeee.

Turdsniff cracks a smile, knowing he’s got the checkmate. He doesn’t even care that I’m watching. The other brother is nearing tears as he stuffs the bag back onto the shelf.

“Please don’t tell mom!” he pleads.

Turdsniff smiles even brighter now.

“I won’t tell mom if you give me all the money in your piggy bank.”

The other brother is crushed, you can see it in his little miniature body language. He’s been defeated.

“Fine,” he pouts.

Damn, I think. This little Turdsniff is one smooth operator.

Then, like some kind of untouchable mob boss who’s got the whole city on his payroll, he looks at me and says,

“You know they let you try samples here?”

The Crossroads 

I once had a conversation with a family friend that has stuck with me ever since.

It was a year or so ago, and we were sitting outside sipping on some beer when he began to tell me about his life during college. I myself was just beginning my college experience, so I listened intently. He went on to explain how he was slacking in school, partying and drinking too much, getting in fights, etc. I took another sip of my beer, thinking to myself that this sounded like fun.

Although, he grew very serious as he explained that during this time, he met his current wife. Putting his beer down now, he stared at me and I could hear in his voice just how hard this was for him to talk about.
 
“Once I started dating her, I realized I was at a crossroads where I needed to make a choice between a life of joy, fulfillment, and passion… or prison.”

He seemed on the verge of tears at this point as he nodded his head in the direction of his wife, who was sitting nearby.

“And I chose prison.” 


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Fake I.D.

Over the weekend, I went out to the bars with some of my friends. We did not want to pay the price of an Uber, (knowing our wallets would already be taking a beating at the bars) and were in desperate need of a designated driver.  My sister decided to be the one to make Christmas come early. She wanted to bring her friend so they could use their fake I.D.s. They were supplying the ride, so I had no complaints.

 

We make it downtown and head to the bar we planned on staying at for the night. After waiting in line for a few minutes and people-watching all the drunkies, (always fun to do, until I become one of them, that is) we make it to the front of the line. My sister’s friend’s fake I.D. works like a charm, and my sister is up next. She hands the bouncer the card, and he’s already looking at her skeptically. My sister is 19 years old, but is fairly small, so this was expected. The bouncer scans the I.D. and looks at it for a while, then stares back at my sister. My sister is starting to look nervous. Being the douche that I am, I watch on excitedly, thinking, this oughta be good.

 

He asks her, “When were you born?”

 

My sister answers correctly according to the fake I.D.’s info.

 

The bouncer looks unimpressed. He then asks, “So you’re from Illinois?” (We aren’t from Illinois.)

 

“Yes,” she responds nervously.

 

“What’s the capital of Illinois?”

 

I chuckle in my head, as I know he has gotten her. She looks back at me with defeat spread across her face. I watch on, curious to see how this goes down.

 

“Uh, Chicago?” she responds, her voice void of all confidence.

 

Ouch…I think in my head. I turn to the bouncer, a grin on my face as I wait for him to laugh at her and possibly confiscate her I.D. But, he pauses for a few seconds. As I look at him, I realize something.

 

This dude has no clue what the capital of Illinois is either!

 

He gives her a look of approval, nods his head, and hands back her I.D.! I can barely hold in my laughter as he checks mine.

 

“You probably catch kids all the time with the capital question, huh?” I say.

 

He nods his head and smiles at me.

 

“I swear, these underage kids man! They always think they’re sneaky, but I get ’em every time!”

 

I can only wonder what would’ve happened if my sister had said “Springfield”.

 

 

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See You in Hell

When I am driving along the road, minding my own business, and a car pulls out into traffic in front of me from a perpendicular street (or a parking lot, whatever the case may be) and proceeds to drive twenty miles an hour slower than every other car on the road, my faith in humanity gets just a little weaker than it already is.

 

What on earth can possibly be going through someone’s mind to pull into moving traffic, and go half as slow as the traffic? What kind of logic told you this was the move to make? I’m going to assume that if you’re driving, you have eyes, so not seeing the fast approaching cars is not an excuse. What is the malfunction?

 

A car is quickly nearing your position at 40 plus mph, and your decision is to pull out in front of that car and mosey along at your own snail-like pace. Never mind the fact that this car now has to either slam on their brakes if they have time to do so, or make the quick decision to swerve around you, possibly colliding with other cars and creating a large traffic accident. None of that matters, as long as you didn’t have to wait an extra few seconds for traffic to clear up, right? Or you didn’t have to be bothered to press down another few inches with your foot to accelerate to the speed of traffic. As long as you aren’t inconvenienced, it’s all good, right?

 

Fair enough, but I have a few questions for people who do this.

 

Can you go to the bathroom by yourself? Do you stick your head in the microwave in your free time? When something gets caught in the disposal, do you turn it off before you stick your hand into it? You probably think you can serve chicken medium rare, don’t you?

 

If you pull out in front of swiftly moving traffic and drive along at 15 mph, I hope a burning pile of dog crap is waiting for you on your doorstep every night when you get home. I hope you stub your toe on the corner of your bed every day when you wake up. I hope when you make toast, it burns. When birds fly over you, I want them to sense your ineptitude and dump right on your head. I hope the next time you’re at the movies, someone kicks the back of your seat the entire duration of the film.

 

People who commit this act just flat out suck, and I’m fully convinced there is a VIP suite in Hell reserved just for them. God have mercy on their souls.

 

That is all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Which Syrup Would You Like?

When my sister and I were young, we were eating at an IHOP with our parents. I would say my sister was around four years old, and I was six. When our food arrived, we all reached for the syrup. My mom asked me what kind of syrup I would like, and I told her I’d like the boysenberry. My mom then looked to my sister and asked her if she would like the boysenberry as well. My sister frowned, obviously offended, and exclaimed:

 

“I don’t want the boysenberry, I want the girls and berry!”

Sockatory

Socks are something that I personally am very horrible at. My socks are either dirty, have holes in them, or have twirled off to the alternate dimension where all my socks eventually end up.

I will buy a brand new pack of socks and place them into my drawer, where they usually stay put for a day or two, three if I’m lucky. I get to enjoy the wonderful feeling of fresh cloth under my feet for just that short period of time. Then, when I go to grab my third or fourth pair, I realize there are only a few socks in my drawer.

Didn’t I buy the twenty pack?

I sift around and realize the socks I’m grabbing are old.

It cant be?

I find a pair that look new. Breathing a sigh of relief, I sit down and start putting them on. My foot slides in, but what stares up at me? One of my toes poking through a gaping hole in the sock. I just stare back, and if my toe could speak in that moment, it would say something along the lines of: Nice try, pal.

I tear the sock off in anger and check the other one. No hole, but I realize it’s a dress sock.

Okay, I guess this can be a fallback.

I go back to my drawer and frantically search for the new socks that I just bought a few days ago. The only socks I can find are the old ones, or ones with holes. The other dress sock isn’t even in there! It’s an ego thing now, I’m not going to put on the old ones when I just bought new ones, and I’m not going to church, so I’m not wearing the holy ones.

The undesirable socks left in my drawer just stare back at me, a painful symbol of my incompetence. They are the socks too old or too sick to travel off to the prestigious alternate sock dimension. (This dimension apparently accepts wallets as well, you can guess how I found that out.) My search is in vain, and I end up settling for an old sock, and one of the new socks I wore the day before that I find behind the toilet. And yes, I only find one new sock. The other one has apparently stumbled upon the portal that provides direct flights to the sock purgatory, along with all the others.

No matter how many pairs of socks I buy, I always end up with the same depleted supply. Over the years, I have developed many theories on where these socks go. Is it a sock nirvana that only accepts the strongest and freshest of socks? Is there a sock demon that gets off on only allowing me to have the bare minimum amount of foot clothing? Is there a sock creature that lives in my house that must feed on healthy socks to sustain its existence? Where do the socks go? Have I stumbled upon a conspiracy that is far beyond my understanding? If you guys don’t hear from me again, you know why.

 

 

 

 

Literally Literal

Literally: adverb. In a literal manner or sense; exactly. Used to emphasize the truth and accuracy of a statement or description.

 

That is the definition of the word “literally” from the Merriam-Webster Dictionary. That is what I’ve been led to believe is the true meaning of the word, and that is how I’ve used the word my entire life. However, there is also another definition now.

 

Literally: adverb. Used in an exaggerated way to emphasize a statement or description that is not literally true or possible.

 

Dude, seriously? They use the word correctly in the totally incorrect definition. How confusing is that. So if it’s “not literally true”, does that mean it’s not true, or that it’s actually kind of true? Doesn’t this defeat the whole purpose of the word “literally”? I don’t even know what I’m saying. My head hurts. This is literally like a literal Inception, literally.

 

Why can’t the people who make words just make up another word? It’s as if so many people were using it incorrectly that they just caved like lenient parents. “Ahhh fine, it can mean that too.”

 

Orrrrr, how about everyone just uses it correctly?

 

I can’t stand when people use the word “literally” in a nonliteral sense. It literally annoys me.

 

“Omg, I’m literally dying from that picture.”

 

Oh are you? Is the picture poisonous? Did it pull out a picture gun and shoot you? Is it one of those pesky hitman pictures? Wait, what? Those don’t exist? Hmm, guess that means you aren’t literally dying, are you?

 

“Those wings are spicy, my mouth is literally on fire. ”

 

What? Did the spicy wings pour gasoline into your mouth and then toss a match into it? Are you in the circus? Are you a dragon? Oh man, I better go get the fire extinguisher! Oh, what’s that you say? It isn’t actually on fire? You just said “literally” to add effect? Sounds a lot like being over-dramatic.

 

My personal favorite:

 

“I literally can’t even.”

 

You literally can’t even what? Use the word “literally” correctly? Finish a whole sentence? This “sentence” makes me literally confused.

 

So, in summary, the word “literally” either means the absolute truth, or the complete opposite of the absolute truth. You can literally just choose which definition you want. Maybe I’m the only one, but this just seems crazy to me. When I try to think about it, I literally can’t even.

 

Late Night Drunchies 

Just some thoughts on late night drunk meals. I find it amazing how fast I can travel from opposite sides of the self-worth spectrum in a matter of hours.

So, after a night of drinking, I usually find myself fervently begging and pleading with my designated driver to hit a drive-thru. McDonald’s, Taco Bell, anything, it doesn’t matter. They all sound like a gift from the heavenly lord himself to drunk me.

I get my way and end up at one of said destinations. After sitting in the drive-thru and obnoxiously ordering for half an hour and making the worker’s night that much worse, I am ten dollars poorer and happily heading home with my grease drenched bag.

I stumble into my house, turn the TV on, and tear open my bag, sinking my teeth into one of the preservative and cheese sandwiches like a man possessed.

Pure delight. I immediately thank myself for making one of the greatest decisions ever known to man. I’m a genius. Harps play in the background as I pat myself on the back and shove more of the heat lamp-dwelling cat meat down my slobbering pie hole. Fries are sent down the hatch next, disappearing faster than Cheetos at a World of Warcraft tournament.

Although, the meal is a shooting star, a flash in the pan. The glory doesn’t last long. I am soon finished, entering the vegetable stage. No longer capable of movement, I collapse onto the couch, covered in crumbs, lying there like some kind of beached whale. The world spins around me as I fall into a deep sleep.

The next morning I wake up, dazed and confused. I’m surrounded by fast-food wrappers, some of them being used as makeshift blankets. My head is pounding. It’s like a McDonald’s was hit by an airstrike and I was knocked unconscious, coming to only to find I’m the lone survivor of the explosion. Half-eaten burgers lay on my chest, fries are tangled in my hair, and it looks like I took a bath in sweet and sour sauce and ketchup.

I piece together what happened and am immediately overcome with shame and disgust. My self-worth is now at an all time low, having been at peak levels just mere hours before. The greatest decision ever made has now become the complete opposite. I went from creating world peace to sticking my penis into a blender. I can’t even look at myself in the mirror.

I spend the rest of the day filled with regret, and the following week trying to forget my guilty process-capade, pushing it out of my memory like the time I listened to an entire Taylor Swift album.

That is, until the weekend comes and I do it all over again.