Life Hack: Quick and easy nipple piercing

Sneeze while a cat is sleeping on your chest.

Cultural criticism

Which onea you fuckers
peed on my phone
on the kitchen table last night?
When I picked it up this morning
it swished not swiped
It’s a miracle it still works
I don’t wanna know who it was
Just don’t let it happen again
or I’ll i don’t know what.
not that I’ll forget so quick,
whenever I pick it up to
check likes on Instagram
it smells like betrayal

One final question

Man: (refreshes his glass of Midleton) So, before you kill me, how did you find me?
Two strangers: (look at each other with puzzled expressions)
Man: I changed my identity ages ago. I went off the grid. Were you clicking through old bookmarks from blogspot.com days? Do you even remember that “last updated” feed they had? I’m still friends with people I found that way. That was the best.
Man: Or was it a random social media link?
Man: Or something more sinister?
First stranger: I did a search for facts about the grunion, actually.
Second stranger: Names for electric cars, here.
Man: (takes sip, says nothing).
Man: Ah.

They sit that way for a very long time. The strangers glance at the bottle of Midleton now and then, but the man ignores them. They will be drinking this soon enough, he thinks, when I am dead.

First stranger: Actually, we’re not actually here to kill you.
Second stranger: No.
Man: Ah.
Man: (Pours himself a fresh glass, and puts the bottle away)
Man: (takes sip) Then you will be going soon, I imagine.
Two strangers: (Shrug, look at each other)
Man: Before you go, I want you to know one thing.
Man: All I want is for you to be happy.
Man: That’s all I want. But I realize that just saying it is useless.
Man: I mean, there used to be people who wanted only for me to be happy, and it had no effect. I disappointed them and myself. Happiness is an elusive target, anyway. I suppose what they wanted was for me to achieve a situation, a mental state and social/economic situation conducive to self-actualization and a condition of agency in life, and here I am, the same lost bobbing cork as always.
Man: But I am content.
Two strangers: (Give each other puzzled looks. One glances at the glass in the man’s hand)
Man: I am sitting in a garden, petting a cat and waiting for death. I have not achieved all I dreamed, but it no longer matters.
Man: All that matters is that you are happy. That you attain a state of agency and personal power. That you can speak of yourself with honesty. (Drinks the last of the whiskey, sets glass on table.)
First stranger: (Licks lips involuntarily)
Man: (Looks at the sky outside) Now I wonder if, when someone told me “all I want is for you to be happy,” they really meant “all I want is for you to have a life of your own and get out of my hair”.
Man: If, when they said, “Do anything you want,” they meant, “do something.”
Man: Hrm.
Man: (Notices the strangers have left)
Man: (Pets cat) (Drinks the last drops of liquid in the glass)
Man: (To cat) I wonder if that is what I meant.
Man: (Sighs, begins typing fresh story)

In Russia, cat adopt you

Odin wonders, did kittens have something to do with the loss of his one eye and he made up the story about the spring of wisdom because it sounded more divine?

He wonders, is that what happened to Van Gogh and he made up the whole cut off his own ear story because mad artist sounded better in the 19th century than kitten?

See Odin woke up at 3.30 with a kitten gnawing on his ear, making nomnomnom sounds and purring sounds, and smacking its lips.

It also bathed his entire head as he tried to fall back to sleep.

You ever try to fall back to sleep in the middle of the night with a kitten chewing on your head? he asks the crows.

Of course not.

Of course not. The crows aren’t even there, Odin is just imagining them today. His wife packed him a lunch and he ate it early in his office and now he’s sitting there while workmen drill holes in brick walls on all sides and concrete walls and do other things similarly noisy to floors and ceilings with other power tools.

What say the slain?

Here is what I wish for you: that one day you lay aside the millstone of recognition for just a second and driving down the street, say, you see a young woman walking toward you on the sidewalk, smiling in the morning sunshine, on her way to work, dark hair flowing in the breeze and unaware of you and the sight of her makes you happy and you think, what a beautiful, together, strong, happy, professional-looking, competent, smart, intelligent, interesting, charismatic and unique woman and only then after this objective reaction to a stranger, realize she is your daughter.

What say the hanged?

Seeing yourself at the center of creation is a failure of imagination.

The Curious Caterpillar and the Very Hungry Cat

The curious caterpillar crept across the kitchen floor.

The sleepy man turned on the coffee machine.

The very hungry cat meowed at the man.

Meow. Meow. Meow.

I just fed you, said the man.

The very hungry cat looked at something on the floor.

The very hungry cat played with it a little, as cats do.

What the hell’re you playing with? said the man.

Don’t eat that, he said.

The man squinted because his eyes weren’t focused yet. It was still early.

The man bent over and tried to pick up what the very hungry cat was playing with.

It looked like green felt, to his bleary eyes.

But it felt like a warm piece of fat.

Yuck, said the man.

Meow. Meow. Meow, said the very hungry cat.

Frickin’ caterpillar come from, said the man.

Go ahead and eat it, said the man.

The end.

There is a word for it

Definition: the emotion a parent feels when their 16-year old daughter returns home from a weekend at a boy-laden rock festival in a city three hours away, happy, thorn-scratched, sunburnt, exhausted, hungry, filthy, robbed of sleeping bag and backpack (including contents) but not purse(+more important contents such as phone, ID, money, etc), long hair wild and glamorous and full of twigs, a goofy smile on her face and glad to be home.

Relief might be the word.

Or gratitude. Thanks for watching out for my kid, universe! And for the dozens of stories you gave her!

As others have said, this is the deal. If you do a good job, they leave. If you do a really good job, they come back. Now and then, at least.

Her sister’s still in the States. She’ll come back too, eventually. I hope.

We have her cat.

Her early-rising cat.

It’s fence-painting season. It’s Gamma’s summer job this year. I keep forgetting to tell her the Tom Sawyer story, but it’s just as well, I can’t imagine any other kids doing as good a job as she does.

Meanwhile, I found myself in a cloud of mosquitos yesterday evening trying to get the pool set up, because my wife wants her pool set up, and also it would be nice if Gamma could jump in when she gets hot out painting the fence.

Definition: the period of time in which a person forgets how the hoses connecting the pool to the filter and pump are connected; equivalent to the time from the end of pool season one year to the beginning of the next pool season the following year.

Imagine me standing there in a tie-dyed T-shirt and old running shorts, slapping mosquitos, staring at the pump, then the pool, then the hose in my hand, trying to grok the nature of this set-up. Eventually I do, of course, I am actually not bad at this sort of stuff, but this is where the fun part begins.

The pool is almost full, just a few more inches to the inlet/outlet holes. I turn on the hose, do stuff around the house, write myself a postit note to turn off the hose before I leave, and go to work. At lunchtime I call Gamma and tell her to turn off the hose and ask her if anything is flooding or leaking.

Flooding no, leaking yes, she says.

When I get home in the evening, I change back into my pool assembly clothes and reality morphs into a version of the cake factory episode of I Love Lucy only instead of cakes moving ever faster down a conveyor belt, I find ever more new leaks. I replace a leaking hose with a new one. I tape up another hose, but I can’t find duct tape and the packing tape I use does not stop the leak and looks decidedly white trashy so I cut more fresh hose but before I can take off the old hose I have to drain the pool below the outlet, so I get a pumpĀ  into the pool and water the garden.

All of this is done, by the way, with Beta’s cat walking in a figure eight around and between my feet.

I also tighten every screw on the pump and filter that can be tightened, and that stops a lot of the leaks too. Ditto the screws on the leaking skimmer thing on the pool.

Yes, then the water is down and the new hose goes on and the pool gets filled back up and I’m done.

Kind of wet, and covered in mosquito bites, but done. As happy and relieved as a girl arriving home from a pop music festival.

A note to my neighbors concerning the naked gent with the live mouse

Due to our morning schedule several days a week, my wife is on her way to work and my daughter upstairs getting her hair nice and flat while I shower downstairs and the cats get into trouble, with the result that a clean but naked male person deals with the cat issues at this time of the day.

I think of you, neighbor, I truly include your peace of mind and sensibilities in my operational equations. If the situation appears likely to require more than a minimal amount of running around, as it did this morning, I am always careful to close the kitchen curtains (with the light off as I do so) in order to avoid subjecting pedestrians, for example, or you there across the street to involuntarily witnessing my activities.

This morning, grey cat made a funny noise outside on the welcome mat, a sort of muffled meow. Since it sounded urgent, and was not his projectile vomiting noise, I let him inside. As he passed me on his way into the kitchen, a shady expression on his face, I noticed a tail sticking out of his mouth.

I did what psychologists advise you to do in these situations and praised him while I turned off the lights, closed the door to prevent the escape of the mouse (because he had set it down and it had darted into the corner beneath the onion and garlic rack thing where the cat couldn’t get to it), closed the curtains and went through the cabinet looking for the proper Tupperware container (small enough to wield easily in tight corners, yet spacious enough to avoid further traumatizing the mouse), finally selecting one of the smaller microwave containers. I also took an unopened issue of the Japan Times from the counter, with which to hold the container closed once I got the mouse inside.

The important thing at this point was preventing the mouse from diving through the air vents in the moulding beneath the refrigerator. Because if it did that, it was home free. It could build a nest beneath our cabinets and have its babies and evolve.

I moved the onion and garlic rack, the mouse began sprinting along the edge of the wall, moving closer and closer to the air vent. The cat batted it around a little. I got the dish over the mouse, slid the newspaper under it, et voila.

Opened the front door, threw mouse in fairly gentle, low arc into the driveway, observed that I was naked on my front porch wearing only a Japan Times and a Tupperware microwave dish, expressed thanks that no children were walking to school yet and went back into the house, where the grey cat was having an existential crisis in the kitchen, which looked like this:

[Picture old grey cat torturing an invisible mouse.]

The end.

Oh, wait. Then I got dressed and took Gamma to school, whose hair was now perfect but expressed some dismay at forgetting both her lip gloss and her perfume.

That’s maybe your subconscious telling you that there are more important things than lip gloss and perfume, I said.

Yeah, mascara, she said.

Also, the red cat was playing with a mouse in the back yard.