CATS: Even though it’s horrifying, it’s actually funny.

This is Bath Salts' logo, actually. But it's like what happened this morning.

I’m sorry, I just can’t not share the magic of my Monday morning with you today.

I’m someone who has lived with cats, by choice or not, for a good 24 years out of my total 28 years of life.  Considering the frequency of my exposure to cats, my exposure to gross cat things (i.e. fleas, tape worm, poo-poo, pee-pee, hair balls, dead animals being dragged home… the list goes on…) is pretty remarkably low.

Besides the errant hair ball or the random turd nuggest flung from the litter box in a fit of post-BM cat joy I’ve only had one major incident.  Until now.  Until this morning.

~~~

The year was 2007 and I was living in Watertown, MA with a rather large group of people in half of a house.  There were two cats there (one mine, one belonged to my roommate) and his cat was a major, ornery pain-in-the-whiskers.  She was this massive thing with a big, fat head and not the kind of big cat that is endearing, no — the kind of big cat that laid in wait to attack feet and other kitties just to pass away the fatty fat days until it’s time to go to cat heaven.  She was miserable – and my first introduction to a cat that I ‘didn’t like’ (although secretly I liked her, because for the two or three pats you could get in before she hissed at you she was still a sweet thing.  Sometimes.  Way down deep in there.  Plus I kinda pitied her…)

Anyways – I had just gotten a job at a furniture company in Framingham and I was super excited for my first day.  Not like any other job I’d had (ahem… it wasn’t in food service) I was just super psyched to not have the threat of ketchup stain and espresso machine burns FOR ONCE in my ding dang life.  So the night before my first day I laid out my outfit and hung it on the bedroom doorknob:  an angora sweater and a pretty, shimmery silk skirt that I had just gotten that holiday season.  Simple and understated, yet true to my need to wear comfy fabulous things whenever possible.

So I put the outfit on in the morning, drive the insufferable 10 miles on Route 9 out to Framingham, and spend the first half of the day kinda sniffing around – something wasn’t right.  Was it me?  Was it my new coworkers?  Was it my pits?  When was the last time I washed this sweater?  Pee-ew!  Something was subtly, horribly wrong.

Fast forward:  lunch time.  With more opportunity to investigate I found my skirt, which had been hanging on the doorknob outside of our bedroom all night, had been brutishly DEFILED by this big monster of a cat.  I didn’t even know lady cats sprayed.  I dunno, maybe she was a boy and I just didn’t know it.  In any case, I’d smelled like sickly ammonia cat pee for the first half of the day and would have to suffer it gladly for the second half.

Horrified, embarrassed, but seemingly undetected by my coworkers (it was a pretty subtle smell, surprisingly) I sat in wait until I could get the hell out of there.  P.S. if you are wondering – no, you can’t get cat piss out of silk:  you just have to throw it away.

~~~

Monday, January 2nd 2012:  A stinky start to the New Year.

Last night, I got super excited about seedlings.  It happens sometimes, and rarely at the right time in the year, but this is the closest I’ve been in a long time.  I whipped out the seed collection while JR was out-n-about (I love doing house-y things when I have the run of the place) and gleefully decided what I could start early, without confusing the hell out of the poor little plant.

We have a rocky patio outside that our landlord said we can use – most things will be growing in pots, anyways, so I decided to start my rosemary in two, small terra cotta pots (should be about two bushes by the time September gets here!)  I also started a really nice tray of habañeros and poblano peppers and cilantro.  Whoa!  Was I excited:  a south-of-the-border medley to ensure delicious, fresh salsas all summer long.

With my kitchen table full of promise for the future, I shut the lights and went to bed.

This morning, when I woke up the bed was so super comfy and the blankets and comforter so warm.  I didn’t want to get up!  So I procrastinated a little, set the alarm a couple times, had a really lazy go of it.  When I finally got up I did the usual routine:  teeth, clothes, splash splash, collect random items that migrated from the purse, breakfast.

So I go in the kitchen to get breakfast and while the rosemary pots are in tact, the tray of delicious, spicy salsa is DESTROYED.  My cats have dug in my plants before, usually in the middle of the summer when they’re on the deck and pretty easy to save.  However!  Seedlings that say they need to be 1/4″ from the surface mean exactly that – once a kitty goes digging around in there there’s little hope of that seed doing well.  In attempt to save what one of my cats (I’m pretty sure it was the gray one) obliterated I kind of tried to push the soil back where it was supposed to be, in hopes that maybe the seeds would go back with it.

OH GOD.

Cupped in my hand, within the layers of upturned soil, was a big, steamy CAT TURD.

OH MY GOD, OHMYGOD.

I was TOUCHING IT with my hand.

Apparently when I had laid out the seedling tray (of mouth-watering salsa ingredients) this big dummy thought that I was being a super-nice Cat Mom and putting together an entirely new litter box for the two of them.

He’s all like “Whoa!  You’re putting MINE on the kitchen table, Mom?  I love you so much!  Thank you!  I will poo in it now to show you how much I love it!”

I don’t normally talk to myself at home but I was carrying on big time as I ran over to the sink and began furiously washing my hands:  about 7 times or more.  As the water poured out of the tap, though, and I thought about it my swearing turned in to uncontrollable laughter.  His little feeble cat brain logic was spot-on, it was totally my fault my hands were covered in dookie right now!

So, my salsa seedlings will have to wait.  No big deal.  New Year’s resolution:  swear less, laugh more.  I think next time I’ll put them on top of the fridge…

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I F%#&ed Up, But Don’t Sweat It

Tonight I had a turn around in my ‘business strategy.’ (If you can call sitting on the man chair in the living room watching The Wire DVDs while endlessly editing images and posting listings on Etsy a ‘strategy’)  It’s cool.  I’ve spent the last two months really pushing my ‘online presence’ following instructions to leave thoughtful comments on other blogs, ‘favorite’ other sellers on Etsy, etc. etc.  But really – the #1 reason I started doing all this bonkers bottle-cap-and-photograph stuff was because it was fun!  And when I go to a blog I like to see content!  Not to mention my entries with the highest hits are the ones where I tell funny stories that have nothing to do with jewelry.  SO!  I thought tonight I’d revisit other times I’d fucked up and my forgiving and understanding nature got me right through it with a smile.

This article had advice in it that made me smart again...

#1 – The time I dropped my camera at a wedding. Not only is this horrifying, but the wedding was just teeming with photographers.  OK, RIT alum, what the heck are you doing in Blue Hill, ME, anyways?!  The bride’s photography I’d seen before the wedding was beautiful.  Her friends had super snazzy cameras that put my Mamiya TLR to shame.  Then, just as the sun set and the guests made their way to the reception tent, ahh…I dropped my frigging camera on the ground and broke the flash mount! Cool, Audrey, real cool.  I spent the next hour trying to figure out a new camera (fail), borrow someone else’s camera (fail) and eventually settled on Macgyver-ing the damn thing and not being able to let go of my flash for the entire night.  Here are some pictures from that night:

Melting Cake Topper

Sweet Vintage-y Dancing Shot with my metallic flash thing I made

#2 – I drop things at Craft Fairs. The first time was at the end of the fair, so that was really no big deal.  But last summer when Kate and I were rolling our wares to Lincoln Park for PICNIC we lifted this dumb little thing we’d rigged up to carry a bunch of stuff at once, tipped it right, and smash!  All my candles that I’d been testing out crashed on to the pavement.  Some were spared.  Most were dangerous to touch.  We just laughed a lot, though, because it was so silly.  And besides later on I learned a better way to get the soy wax not to pull away from the vessel.  So it’s a good thing I didn’t sell them, anyways.

At this particular fair I DIDN'T drop anything. Phew!

#3 – I’ve probably ruined three huge batches of bottle caps in the last year. Due to impatience and improper measuring.  The weird thing about epoxy resin is that if you eyeball it, you’re probably in good shape.  But if you eyeball it and haven’t slept much or maybe have been in a small attic with too much paint, epoxy and mod podge fumes for too long then maybe that won’t be so good.  Botched epoxy pours are obnoxious because they’re kind of like melted saltwater taffy, in texture.  You go to touch one to see if it’s ‘ready’ and then BAM your finger is covered in sticky junk.  Then it kind of ends up on everything as you try to get all the bottle caps safely in the rubbish bin.  Then you get it on your shirt as you’re trying to wash it off your hands and you think to yourself  “God Damn it, that’s the third shirt I’ve gotten epoxy on this month, now I need to go to Goodwill.”  (Another silver lining!)  In any case I’ve wasted probably 20 hours of my life fucking up something that I should be relatively good at doing by now.  Oh well!  Just crack open the windows next time…

A lot of man-hours to be screwin' around with, Audrey

That’s all you get for now, this has been embarrassing (but enlightening!) enough.  For the record, though, all of my posts up until now have been sincere and well-thought out.  But my redirection leads me more to a self-centered place that’s less about telling and more about doing.  I’ll leave comments when they matter, ‘tweet’ thoughts that are thoughtful or pertain to the business, and let Facebook be the conduit of these things.  Off to bake a pie, take a bubble bath or knit a sweater.  Ahh, much better already!