I HAVE JUST RETURNED from a three-and-a-half-hour work meeting on my day off, which AS ONE MIGHT IMAGINE was an infuriating waste of my good christian time. So I’m really hoping today’s topic will be something fun and–OH YOU ARE JOKING MY ASS.
What is a treasure that’s been lost?
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Full disclosure, true believers: I actually spent a good chunk of the day writing another, fairly lengthy version of this post about struggling to hold on to my belief that humans are fundamentally good in the face of three straight years of everyone around me refusing to so much as wear a mask for the sake of my safety and wellbeing. I worked long and hard on it but in the end it wasn’t much fun to write and, historically, that means it wouldn’t be much fun to read, so I scrapped it.
Instead, I decided to crack open my heart and reminisce about a treasure recently and quite unjustly stolen from me: Celebrated Local Cat Holland J. Cat.
She was my sweet peep, my best pal, my Holly-wolly-oh-my-golly, my itty-bitty-oh-so-small. She loved me like crazy, and hopped up into my lap to settle down into a little loaf if I gave her a split-second opening. “Why are you so small?” I’d ask. “Papa! Je ne suis porquoi! I am but un peep!” she would reply in a tiny French accent that sounded remarkably like my voice; of course, it would later transpire that she was so small, and probably partially so interested in a toasty-warm papa, because her kidneys never fully formed, which would lead to what our vet called Tiny Renal Failure. She was only two years old.
Taking her in to say goodbye–definitely too soon, but that’s always better than too late–was one of the worst days of my life, except the bit on the way to the vet when my wife, eyes blurred and swollen with tears she would fucking MURDER me for telling you about, confusedly misread a coin-wash laundromat as “corn wash”; that hit us in the way the right joke can sometimes hit you in the midst of grief, so we were pretty useless for a minute. That was nice.
I miss her, and I treasure her still. Many days, it feels like it was all some mistake that’ll be sorted out and I’ll wake up some day and find her slid down between my wife and her body pillow, as was her custom. I miss my girl. Good night, wee peep.
That’s all. Thank you for listening.
–The Bageler (Sad Version)