Browsing Archives for May 2009

Show Cats!

May 15th, 2009

Over Thanksgiving we had a house full of company. The Country Doctor’s large rambling family of eight siblings descended on our new house along with all their spouses, children, and varying political persuasions. We had sleeping bags on top of sleeping bags, on top of sleeping bags. Children were squashed so closely together on the floor that it was difficult to tell where one sleeping child ended and another began. In fact their dreams all bled together into one long nightmare where they were trapped in an endless game of twister with their cousins, while their parents argued over presidential candidates. During their wakeful hours, one of the activities that greatly entertained this large pulsating mass of sweaty childhood was our cats.

Here we have Arod

and the limp shaggy blonde is Cookie.

Of course, I am not giving you their real names. I am much too protective of my cats to post their real names on the internet for all the world to see! Plus, they have too many real names and I can’t really keep track of them all. Jack – my real son and maybe that is his real name and maybe it is not, all I know is that is what we call him around here – but JACK – likes to re-name the cats just about everyday.

ANYWAY – the point of this story is that these cats were very popular over Thanksgiving. They were carried and coddled, and hugged, and snuggled, and placed under blankets, and inside of sleeping bags and on top of teetering pillow piles and then the cats would make a break for it and try to escape to find some peace, only to be searched for with great anxiety until they were found and carried and snuggled and dropped and snatched back up and chased and hugged until they meowed for mercy.

Fortunately they are very mild cats. They are also somewhat striking cats. They were also free cats – given to us by a local couple that has a pickle court! Have you ever played pickle? Very fun game. Anyway – we got these little kittens and they grew and grew and got fuzzier and fuzzier and more and more beautiful – so when my brother-in law (Mr. Panties) saw them, he was so awestruck by their fluffy loveliness, that he dubbed them the “Show Cats”. And they have been our “Show Cats” ever since.

My sister, April loves our “Show Cats” and so does her daughter Bellers so whenever they visit, they always try get me to give them one. At which point I tell April the entire “Show Cats” story and then she says, “Rechelle – You’ve told me that same story a hundred times! “

And I Say, “But it is sooo funny.”

And April says – “Not really – not anymore…”

And then I say – “Show Cats Show Cats Show Cats…”

And then she says – “Actually, I don’t think it was that funny to start with…”

And then I say – “SHOW CATS!!”

And then April says something really, really, super, mean or she imitates my laughter making a horrible screeching noise while puckering her face into a wizened old hag as if I look like that while I am laughing!

And then I say – “It is still funny – because I say so! Show cats! Show Cats! Show Cats!”

The point of this story?… I have SHOW CATS! And they are better than April’s old boring NOT “Show Cats”! The end.

The Country Doctor and I worked at the same place for about a year and during that time he asked me out once, but I was involved with someone else at the time. In fact, when he asked me out, this is how I responded.

“Gosh – I would really love to go out with you, but I am dating someone else.”

So we continued seeing each other at work and occasionally having brief stilted, embarrassed conversations. Eventually my work schedule changed and I stopped running into him.

A few months later, my boyfriend broke up with me, which was a very good thing as about the only thing that was healthy in that particular relationship was how much I loved his mother. She was a girl after my own heart. She was always buying crazy things at thrift stores and garage sales, hauling them home where her family would ridicule her for her strange purchases while I looked over her tarnished treasures and thought they were marvelous. Old woven rugs, vintage hats, corroded silver spoons – sometimes she would just hand her finds over to me, glad to know someone who appreciated her taste for strange old stuff. I knew that if I ended up marrying Don, I would have a miserable marriage, but a fabulous mother-in-law, and that really didn’t seem like a good foundation for marital bliss. Nonetheless, our break-up sent me into a tailspin from which I did not readily recover.

Shortly thereafter, I took a new job at a health food cooperative and also took a part-time teaching job at a private school. My sister and I moved into a new apartment with her disease ridden puppy Nick. April was engaged to Clay and I rarely saw her, but one day she came home and noticed that I had moved my mattress out onto the balcony of our apartment.

“What are you doing with your mattress out there?” she asked.

“Well… uh… um… I just wanted to sleep outside…you know get some fresh air.”

April just sort of stared at me…

There was a long pause…

Followed by a sideways glance…

Accompanied by a heavy sigh…

Finally she spoke, “Whatever happened to that guy that asked you out last year?”

“Oh… that guy?”

“Yeah him. Have you seen him around lately?”

“No.”

“I think I am going to give him a call.”

“What!”

“I think I am going to call him and beg him to take you out before you move into the woods, start wildcrafting herbal tea blends, while meditating and talking to trees!.”

So she called him. I had to leave for work and was not able to listen in, but I called her as soon as I got to work and made her recount every detail of the conversation. She had talked him into calling me and later that evening… he did.

Me – “Hello?”

CD – “Hello – is this Rechelle?”

Me – “Um…yeah…”

CD – “Well, hi…this is the notyeta Country Doctor.”

Me – “The what?”

CD – “The nothyeta Country Doctor.”

Me – “What are you talking about?”

CD – “Someday it will all be clear to you…until then would you like to go out and do something?”

Me – “Um…okay…”

CD – “Well… what would you like to do?”

ME – “I don’t know…what would you like to do?”

CD – “Well I would like to do what you would like to do.”

Me – “Um… well… I don’t know what to do – what do you want to do?”

CD – “Whatever you want to do…”

And so on and so forth – yeah it was riveting – anyway he finally pulled out of me what I wanted to do…

Me – “Do you still have that motorcycle?”

CD – “Yes”

Me – “Could we go for a ride on that motorcycle?”

CD – “Sure – that sounds great.”

And so that is what we did. We drove all over the countryside yelling tidbits of conversation into each other’s ears, stopping occasionally at a pretty view to talk. After a while we decided to get something to eat and this is where he took me.

The Yello Sub and guess what…

We both ordered the exact same sandwich!

A green turkey – which is a fabulous concoction consisting of turkey, guacamole, salsa, sprouts, cream cheese, on freshly baked and oven toasted whole wheat bread.

They have a lot of different sandwiches at the Yello Sub.

It is kind of a miracle that we would both love the exact same sandwich.

Do you want to know what happened next? Do ya? Well, do ya? Okay – They give you a card at the Yello Sub to let you know when your order is up. So while we were waiting, I asked the notyeta Country Doctor a question.

A question from which he has never really recovered…

A question that made him fall instantly in love with me.

And dream of having four boys with me. And of building a house with me. And of stapling our son’s head together while I watched in horror.

Do you want to know what the question was? Do ya? Well do ya?

The question was…..

What do you think about Ross Perot?



That’s right! Turns out I was the perfect date. First, I suggested a motorcycle ride, then we ordered the same sandwich and to top it off, I asked a politically minded question. The Country Doctor loves politics and even though I could really care less – I appeared to care and that is all that matters.

After that he was putty in my hands. And we lived happily ever after.

Sometimes customers at the garden center are so determined that the problems with their plants are absolutely, impossibly, absurdly, difficult to diagnose – that you have to get a little inventive to give them a solution.

Fortunately – this is not a problem for me…
Customer – I have a strange question for you…
Me – I bet you do.
Customer – Uh… Well, I have a Little Princess Spirea…
Me – How strange!
Customer – Uh… that is not the strange part.
Me – Thank God!
Customer – Is there anyone else here that can help me?
Me – (In a high pitched mimicking tone) Is there anyone else that can help me?
Customer – Is that supposed to be funny?
Me – Are you ever going to get to your question?
Customer – Oh… okay – So I have this Little Princess Spirea and all the bottom leaves are gone!
Me – Gone?
Customer – Yes, they are gone! The top leaves are still there, but the bottom leaves have completely disappeared!
Me – Fungus?
Customer – Impossible!
Me – Insects?
Customer – Never!
Me – Disease?
Customer – Surely you jest!
Me – Too much water?
Customer – Do you think I am an imbecile?
Me – Not enough water?
Customer – Ha! Do you realize I have an advanced degree in every known horticultural science known to mankind? I think I can properly water a plant!
Me – Okay then… do you have a cat?
Customer – Absolutely not!
Me – Are there any deer in the area?
Customer – Deer eating the bottom branches of a shrub!?! What are you… an idiot? I think the deer would eat the top branches not the bottom branches!
Me – Yes well… have you not heard of the pygmy legless belly sliding deer?
Customer – The what?
Me – The pygmy legless belly sliding deer! Surely someone of your garden knowledge stature has heard of them? They are extremely rare – but oh how they love the Little Princess Spirea!
Customer – They do?
Me – Yes they do… and of course the poor creatures can not reach the top branches of any shrub.
Customer – Of course they can’t!
Me – Yes, because of the… you know… the legless part.
Customer – Why didn’t I think of it?
Me – That is what we are here for.
Customer – So what can I do?
Me – An infestation of the pygmy legless belly sliding deer is virtually impossible to combat.
Customer – Oh…
Me – I have heard that midnight modern dancing around a campfire sometimes helps.
Customer – Really?
Me – Uhuh – but uh… it only works if they dancer is um… is um… completely naked!
Customer – Oh…
Me – Yes… buck naked AND you have to spread butter and jam all over your backside!
Customer – Well… I guess it is worth a try.
Me – Good luck!
Customer – Thanks!
Originally published September 4, 2008