The one where the cat dies and I am forced to watch


As is becoming customary in the Ruggieri-Hinshaw household, Wednesday nights have increasingly consisted of saying we will do an ambitious list of activities that typically end up on the back-burner to watch Grey’s Anatomy and compare our lives to doctors who don’t really have lives and furthermore, really don’t actually exist. I’ll usually bake something in an effort to ease my unhealthy chocolate addiction and Dylan will buy a sweater online that she’ll probably return in about a week. Both of us will speak about the weekend in growing anticipation, we’ll complain about a laundry list of miscellaneous topics that are currently pissing us off and eventually, one of us will pull the metaphorical day-ending trigger and hand the remote to the other declaring their need to go to bed.

And meanwhile.. back in Lawrence.. it’s dollar night.

And I’m sure you’re thinking the same thing I would probably think after reading that :

Man Meg, your life is boring/ uneventful/sucks/etc.

And to that I say.. you are so very very wrong.

Well, yes, maybe it does occasionally suck. But sometimes sucking and eventful and maybe not exciting but definitely interesting go hand in hand in hand.

And it is my personal belief that there are certain people in the world, that for whatever reason, for no reason whatsoever, are forced to endure a constant wrath of awkward, random (and occasionally unfortunate) circumstances that effect them more on on a daily basis than your average human being. For some reason, shit just happens to these people in more frequency. Not necessarily terrible life-altering situations, but still, situations that make those around them laugh at their constant demise. It keeps these individuals on their toes. It forces them to create humor about their bizarre dilemmas (or else they will cry) and most importantly, it helps them stay always, endlessly and eternally humble.

And in case you haven’t guessed it yet, this belief comes from personal experience. As I am most definitely, absolutely without a doubt one of these “lucky” individuals.

If I had a two dollars and 27 cents for every time I was in a situation that I kept having to tell myself, you’ll laugh about this someday.. you’ll laugh about this someday.. I would have probably near three thousand dollars and 52 cents. I’m not doing exact math here so that’s a ball-park estimate but let’s just say my entire life has been nothing short of one catastrophic disaster moment after another. I suppose ditching the life mantra, “What the hell! Let’s do it.” would be helpful to my cause. But I do love a good story. Even if it’s at my own expense.

And with that introduction into my life, I will share a story from a pretty average Monday in the life of Meg.

Here is my story: watch?v=1OlCVNn9ZeY

The One where The Family Cat dies

and I am forced to watch it’s sad demise-

Monday started out, as most Mondays do, with the desire to rewind back several hours to Sunday. This particular Monday (and ok, this was three days ago) I had accepted the fate of being very nearly starvingly broke and thus, in an effort to compete against my deminishing and dying bank account, I took on BOTH a nannying job and my regular shift in the dungeon (fitting room) giving me a grand total of 12 hours of manual labor to look forward to. (I say manual very loosely. I fold clothes. I don’t operate heavy machinery and it’s not like I was weeding the garden and cutting down trees at this family’s house… but, for the sake of the story, just go with it)

Anyway, I got to this family’s house ready to do battle play house with any little brats precious beautiful cherub children that I was to spend the next 8 hours with. The dad left me some cash. Told me there was a couple animals but they would come and go as they pleased and to make myself at home. Which I did, as I laid eyes on their beautiful leather couch. Ohhh yea. That couch and me? We got Thisclose. So, I spent most of the morning avoiding getting hit in the head with the wii controller and asking the kids if maybe going outside would be kind of fun? (note: totally vetoed on this. Which I was fine with, it’s Monday and physical activity seemed daunting. Furthermore, leaving my spot on the couch was unheard of. At least I tried. Childhood obesity? Hey, not my kids. I’m completely cool with videogames for 8 hours. Besides, I get like super hyped when they beat a boss. Silent fist pump behind their heads)

Finally, they evacuate the living room to play some video game called Animal Jam in their bedrooms. I’m just supposed to be the mediator here. The girl who ensures that when the parents come home, their kids are still relatively unharmed and the house is still standing. I have this gig in. the. bag. I can do this.

Enter cat. Ugly, old mangy creature. Please note, I am not a cat person. Growing up, if my mom wanted my dogs to attack their chew toys she would train them with the word Kitty? and then they would have a tug of war contest with the squeeky toy thinking it was a game. I’m sorry. Maybe that’s inhumane. Maybe it was mean. But cats don’t like me. So, I never thought anything of this. And like I said, I’m not a cat person.

It stalks around the room. Sometimes, stretching. Sometimes shooting looks at me. Then it curls in a ball on the floor. Ok, cat. You stay in your corner, I’ll stay on the couch.. we won’t touch, life will be ok. Don’t come near me. I don’t know the different between purring and growling and if you bite me I will be forced to throw you across the room like a small rubber football. It seems to understand me. We have an agreement.

But then, the little bastard throws in a curve ball. It starts coughing. And wheezing. And I’m like Oh my god! Gross/Awesome! I have never seen a cat vomit a hairball. I am both fascinated and disgusted. I can’t look away. I am spellbound by this train-wreck of a feline 5 feet in front of me. I want to both pat it on the back and run away in fear. In the end, I decide to stay in my couch. I don’t know what will happen if I move.

Then, something bad happens. I’m not really sure the exact chain of events, as I kind of blacked out both for my own sanity and because I didn’t know I was supposed to remember these exact details at the time. More or less though, it rolls over/lays down/ falls over. Its eyes are open. They are glassy.

I stare in disbelief. Is this the next step in the hairball releasing process? Is it the calm before the storm? I sit completely still. It’s going to attack me. It’s going to jump on me and rip out my hair. It has claws and fangs. I am unarmed! I need a weapon to protect me. This cat is possessed. I am terrified. This is why I am a dog person! Dogs don’t do shit like this. (These are just some of my thoughts)

I very slowly edge toward the coat closet and grab my weapon of choice.. an empty hanger (ok, its all I could think of). Then I sprint back to the couch for safety. This will protect me. The cat has not moved. I reach out cautiously with the hanger and prod it’s little body. Nothing. Then, I start to panic. It’s dead! I killed it by not helping it! I should have patted it! It was choking! What kind of terrible omen is it to watch a cat die and not help? I am a terrible, terrible person/babysitter. What if this is this family’s beloved pet? What have I done? The kids can’t find out. I need to call a vet.

I call the dad. I call the mom. No one answers.Of freaking course. I continue to sit in the living room and hang out with the potentially dead cat. I call a local vet. I explain what happened. I explain what it looks like. I offer to send a picture text message. They tell me that will be unneccesary, if the cat hasn’t breathed for this long, there is nothing else they can do. I feel defeated. I must hide the body.

I find a towel. It has flowers on it. I find this fitting. I put the towel over the cat and tuck in the corners. I think it might have peed. I try not to cry at how my Monday is going. I lift it up in the same fashion Santa does with toys. Except I am carrying a dead cat sack. It is not the same.

I put it in the garage. I say a little prayer that I won’t get bad luck for seven years for not helping it. I ask it not to haunt my dreams. I hum a Bieber song as a send-off. I have done my part. I am not a cat person. There is only so much I can do here.

The parents get home later and I inform them that their cat has died. I fear their reaction. They assure me, “she” had been sick for sometime and it was only a matter of time before she “croaked” (interesting word choice for someone who had to very literally watch their animal croak.) Oh, and THANKS FOR TELLING ME, because I spent the whole day in misery dreading your arrival home and insuring your children that the garage was completely off limits because of the power drills. and the stairs. and the temperature. Yes, thank you for THAT. And for not taking taxes out when you pay me. Bless you.

The end.

So as you can see guys, my life isn’t really boring. Yes, it does sometimes suck but if a Wednesday night means that I get to get through the whole evening without having to watch another animal die of hairball failure, I’ll take a white-bread boring day to that kind of “excitement” anytime. Alas, that is not my life. And it’s only a matter of time before another version of a similarily ridiculous situation surfaces in my life. But I suppose, that’s my cross to bear and your laugh to be had.

And until then, I’m going to bed. Enjoy your dollar night.

ps- to all you shakespearian evil cats out there, next time you want to die some dramatic death in your owner’s living room….Leave me the hell out of it!



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