For the next few weeks I will be house-sitting for some once soft copy now hard copy friends in Tring, Hertfordshire, England. This family of four choose to share their house and contents with four cats (three black on white), one goldfish (currently living abroad down the road from school for the summer holidays), and five potted plants.
Those of you who know me will know that I am indeed a very house proud kind of guy- everything has a place, and into each place everything must go. The words “neat” and “freak” placed lovingly in a sentence to describe me would not be somewhat far from the truth. On one recent visit to see the Long Island Princess in Long Island, New York, I was somewhat bemused to hear that the Long Island Princess herself had been up until 1am cleaning and scrubbing and making barren surfaces in fear of my pending appearance. Even the New jersey Ambulance Chaser made a half-hearted attempt until she gave up and plonked herself down next to her man and ate another Cow Tale.
I think what amuses me the most is that this is a self imposed standard that I place upon myself … not upon anyone else. I would never expect others to be as deranged and obsessively tidy as my unique neurotic nature. Many of you have seen the look of internal distress in my eyes as you’ve placed a cup of coffee on an unsuspecting piece of furniture without accompanying coaster. Once a first date never got to see a second after a pivotal interruption occurred with the spillage of a glass of fine Shiraz.
So you can image my reaction when this very morning, I roused from my slumber to come downstairs to start the process of the first of three coffees, when I noticed that the white cat (aptly named Jasper) had put on his dancing shoes, gone out into the rainy and muddy back garden, then preceded to Samba all over my nice clean kitchen floor. I had place cardboard at the base of the cat-flap to stop this sort of shenanigans, but it would appear I missed the fact that Jasper has his own special powers of levitation. Could someone please train these animals to at least wipe their feet first?
Now, you cat people out there, I know what you are going to say. You will anthropomorphise these dim witted savants by saying that “they choose NOT to wipe their feet” with a dim witted smile on your face. A cat has approximately a 30 gram brain, compared to a human brain which is about 1.5kgs. I too can exist on whim and instinct, but I am also quite handy when it comes to opening jars, and my sense of rhythm when doing the Samba is much better than Japser’s.
Like The Patriarch of the Family of Four, I share his need to see this kitchen floor sparkle. So before I’ve even had the chance to gulp a second coffee, I am out with mop and bucket removing any evidence that Jasper had no idea he was doing an awkward Cha-cha than an incomprehensible Samba. Yeah, bet that dim witted savant!
Cats – 4
Fish – 1
Potted Plants – 5
Body Count – 0
Well, we shall soon see.