Tuesday, April 12, 2011

On Garbage Day and How My Pets Are Not Helping Me Relax

In my neighborhood, garbage day is Sunday. There is really nothing remarkable about it--we take out our trash tote, the recycling bin, and on a fairly regular basis a case of empty wine bottles. There's a creepy car that goes up and down the street looking for redeemables and reusables in the trash, which is a little weird but part of the weekly routine. We like to peek into recycling bins on walks with the dog to see what kind of wine our neighbors like to drink. You can tell a lot about a household by passing by their garbage and recycling.

For instance, this last Sunday I took the dog for a nice walk. It was gorgeous out and I needed the exercise. It became a bit of a torture exercise, though--so much baby refuse. So many houses proudly displaying their empty diaper boxes, new pack 'n play packaging, ridiculous amounts of empty whole milk jugs, baby food jars, and in one case a defunct car seat. It was almost like a neon sign in front of each house--"Look at us! We're a family! Even our GARBAGE reminds you of the simple biological function that you just can't seem to complete! Yay, fertile people!" And then I got back to our house and we had a baby box out on the curb too. It was a brightly colored box from the baby gate that we purchased at Target--it had a picture of a happy mommy holding her happy (but mischievous) baby in her glamorous eat-in kitchen, one hand on the "Munchkin" gate. Thank goodness that gate keeps her baby safe from the Viking stove, espresso machine, and expensive cabinetry holding all sorts of sharp and breakable objects from boutique stores. That is the kitchen of someone who didn't have to spend her earnings on IVF to get that adorable tot. I felt slightly better, seeing our "family" refuse out at the curb. Except we're big fakers.

That gate was for our dog.

See, we don't have children but we have an array of dysfunctional animals. Our wonderful greyhound, Kayak, hated his crate (and we hated how it took up half of our kitchen), so we set up a crate area in the hall with the doors closed and an oldschool wood-and-cable baby gate. It turned out our dog didn't hate the crate, he hates being alone--which is too bad since neither of us are stay-at-home pet parents. Over the weekend Kayak got so worked up when we went out to Maria's on Friday that he pushed the gate just so and topped it over. Then he did it again on Saturday. We can't just leave him out, because he chews on things. Like Stickley furniture and guitar cases. So, we went in search of a better gate, one of those tension-mounted swing-latch thingies. We thought, "We can save this gate and use it when we have an actual tiny human locked away from chewing and eating and climbing on unsafe things!" It made us happy in a weird way. It gave us "family" garbage.
Kayak, skulking behind his handiwork.

However, last night I came home from fertility yoga to find that Kayak had chewed and gnawed right through the latch. Not enough to open it, but enough to make the latch completely and totally defunct. Like, as in I had to use a wrench to unscrew one of the tension rods so that I could get the freaking dog OUT of his "crate." Now it is definitively a dog gate, one that we can't use for a baby. Argh.

...because Rocky is hiding under my desk.
Kitty wonderland. Empty...
Oh, and the other item in our fake "family" garbage was a playgym. Not for a child (and not even really fakeable to look like it was for a baby), but for my crazy cat, Rocky. The cat who was on prozac because he suddenly started acting terrorized--by turns skittish and demonic, hiding in the basement, and yowling for no apparent reason. I know it's not physical because I've taken this cat to two different vets for two full workups and that cat is healthy as a horse. He's mentally ill. The prozac made no difference at all (I actually think it made him worse because of the stress involved with giving him the pill--so much hissing and growling and swaddling and missed swaddling resulting in deep claw marks...) Since the prozac failed miserably, we decided to set up a kitty haven in my back office on Sunday--complete with a giant, fancy cat tree playgym thing that I assembled myself (so proud). He has places to scratch, several places to hide, places to play, places to climb, multiple windows to look out of--Rocky HAS to be happy once he gets used to these new digs. But then I started laughing once everything was set up. I have a freaking cat nursery in my house. Or if not a nursery, then at least a playroom. Because that's not ironic at all.

Abner, having fun with progesterone caps.
And then, we have our wonderful cat Abner, for whom prozac works like a champ (his issues are aggressiveness). Except he steals the progesterone suppository caps from the nightstand and last night stole one with the progesterone bullet still in it and ate it. I have no idea what human female hormones in gross suppository form do to a neutered male cat. I guess I'll find out. I do know that I didn't appreciate having to get up and go downstairs at 5 am to get another one of those damn things because the one I had conveniently set out was sitting in that nasty cat's belly.

So, between garbage day and my insane animals it is a miracle that I can relax at all. Garbage day comes only once a week. I'm stuck with these crazy (yet lovable and occasionally therapeutic) animals 24/7. I love them to death, but I really need them to dial down the crazy before my next round of meds. There's only room for one psycho in this house at a time.

1 comment:

  1. What we do for our animals, those lucky little four legged creatures.