Saturday, November 19, 2005
Something I need to Get Off my Chest
When I was seven years old, my parents relented on the 'no pets' law and took me to an animal shelter. There, we adopted two kittens. One was pitch black with a long tail and a sweet little 'mrow?' voice. He was promptly named Lyle Patrick by yours truly. Next, we found a slightly older girl kitten, a calico with lovely white paws and hazel eyes. She was such a demure girl; I named her Sarah Jane.

Sarah Jane and Lyle Patrick came home and quickly hid underneath my bed--and this scared the bejesus out of me. I spent most of the night on my hands and knees, waiting for the cat attack that was surely coming. As the months went on, cats would be flung from my bedroom with great succor. Soon, the cats learned that this little human was just an evil embodiment of a pesky dog. They stayed away.

There was another purchase, that year. This was to be the threshold of technological advance in my household. A microwave was bought. A large, convection, bulky one from Montgomery Ward's. It was placed on a cart in the kitchen, and looked like a shrine. The first meal made in it was fried chicken, and the little waves of heat emanated from the charred flesh of poultry. All were amazed.
"How could you ruin the chicken in a microwave?" Dad asked.
"I don't know! It's VERY POWERFUL!" Mom replied.
I tried to flake off the burnt parts and go on with my magical microwaved meal.

On school days, I was a latch-key kid for about an hour before my parents came home from work. Before the microwave, I spent my hour in the kitchen, where the boombox was, listening to pop stations and dancing all over the linoleum. I pretended I was a superstar, singing and dancing my heart out, interspersed with licking ketchup straight from the bottle. But then the cats came, which meant dress-up and tail-pulling. And lastly, the microwave.

The stage has been set.

One afternoon, while jamming out to Salt 'n Peppa, I considered the microwave. I found a peice of cheese and put it in the microwave. I nuked it for ten seconds. The cheese was still solid, but slightly warm and gooier. "This is a good thing," I thought as I swallowed the cheese. Next, a peice of lunchmeat went in. Then, an apple. Pretty soon, I was bored with food items, and getting full, too, as I kept eating all the little nuked snacks. I was about to turn away when I felt a tail brushing against my legs. I looked down, and there was Sarah Jane.
"Mrow?" she asked.
"Come here, kitty!" I reached down and swooped up Sarah Jane.
"mROW!" she cried in protest.
"It's okay, kitty!" I said. Sarah Jane went into the microwave. Ten seconds later, she came out slightly warm and confused. I set her down and she wobbled over to her water.
Next, Lyle Patrick went in. I upped it to fifteen seconds with him. He actually looked as though he could fall asleep while being nuked. When the buzzer went off, I took out another warm cat and let him go back to the sofa for the continuation of his nap.

The cats were probably nuked about a minute each, when all was said and done. When I saw 'Gremlins', I realized that microwaving live animals probably wasn't a good idea, so I put a nix on the experiments. I never told anyone about my Dr. Frankenstein-like trials, and when Mom would ask no one in particular why there was cat hair in the microwave, I managed to always appear busy with homework or chores or a new hangnail.

Now, there IS an upside to this story.

Let's see...I was seven in 1986. Sarah Jane ran away in 1997, but she was very healthy at the time of her disappearance.

And Lyle Patrick? Well, he lived until 2004. At the time of his departure from Earth, he was eighteen years old, and until a terrible accident occured on the front lawn involving Mom's Thunderbird and Lyle's front leg, he was a healthy, grouchy, rambunctious cat. My point?

I think I extended those cats' lives via microwave.

Shew. It's good to get that off my chest.
Written by FRITZ
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Name: Fritz

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