Friday, September 10, 2010
Cat Owners Anonymous
You see, I grew up in a cat hating family, and pride myself in being a dog person through and through. How in the world we ended up with a cat at our house is beyond my recollection. I believe it had something to do with field mice entering our garage, and a couple of big-eyed beggars that "promised" to take care of it. Whatever the reason, we've been a secret cat owner for 6 years now.
Today I was reminded of my shame. I went to the store to buy some feline food. NOTHING embarrasses me more than going down the cat food aisle. I used to get a small bag and hide it in the cart surrounded by groceries. But we were always running out of cat food.
Little bags of cat food + hungry cat = more trips down the embarrassing cat food aisle.
So the economical side of me won over and I've been buying the "JUMBO" bag of cat food. Walking around the store with a "JUMBO" bag on the bottom rack of my cart is more embarrassing than having giant packages of feminine hygiene products in my cart. Ridiculous?? Maybe. But if you're a true cat hater than you know why it's humiliating.
Big bag of cat food = assumption that you own 7 cats = CRAZY CAT LADY.
Few things are more embarrassing than being accused of owning multiple cats. I know this happens because...well... I usually think it about other people I see in the store. When I pass by a shopper with a "Jumbo" bag in the cart, I say to myself, "Yikes, crazy cat lady up ahead." It's judgemental, its a sin, and it's one of my flaws that needs revision. (See post below.) Because of my preconceived ideas about other people who buy "Jumbo" bags of cat food, the Good Lord humbled me today by allowing me to run into no less than 8 people I know in the store while I had the food in the cart. I wanted to scream, "I ONLY HAVE ONE CAT, I PROMISE!" But I just let them go ahead and believe whatever they wanted. I can't stop the rumors.
When my friends come over and see the cat walk by, they say, "Hey, I didn't know you have a pet kitty."
"She's not a pet...she's a highly trained, highly specialized extractor and exterminator of vicious disease carrying mammals of the rodent variety. She deserves a feline metal of valor for her service to this property."
Generally, pet cats tinkle in the sand box, don't care if you live or die, and get hair on your church clothes. While our cat may or may not do those things, she's much more than a pet. She's a hero. I salute you, Miss Kitty.
Am I saying that you should all go out and get a cat, No.
Am I saying that I will no longer judge those with a big bag of cat food in the cart....maybe. (If you've got two bags....forget it....you ARE a crazy cat lady, no doubt about it.)
All I know is that next time I need to buy cat food, I'm going at 5:30 a.m. and I'm going to wear a ball cap and dark glasses. Don't say hi to me either, because I will not acknowledge you with the goods in the cart. I will make a beeline for the self checkout line and race to the parking lot where I will quickly look around to make sure no one is watching before I gingerly throw the bag in the back of the truck and peel out of the parking lot.