Wednesday, July 12, 2006

My Fans

First off, no, it's not about fans such as aficionados (I'm lucky if four other people in the world read this thing). It's about fans. Yesterday I had a couple of fond memories about fans. I was reminded of the fans because a friend of mine was debating whether he should get a second cat to keep his spazzy first cat company. I told him absolutely yes. Well, isn't that illogical? Why change subjects from fans to cats? What do cats have to do with this?

Many years ago I had two cats. They were born to a barn cat mother and they were brothers, as different from each other as night and day. Falstaff was a scheming, half-evil gray tabby who ate like a pig and later actually became bulimic. No, I am NOT kidding, and I'd rather not go into the details. His brother, Orpheus, was a sweet, svelte black and white lovemuffin who was absent the day the brains were handed out. He sang instead of meowing and woke me up every morning by staring at me. I never understood how that worked, but he did.

Anyway, one winter when I was living in a tiny garret apartment with no heat, a friend gave me a little portable space heater for Christmas. I took it with me all over the apartment (which was usually a crisp 52 degrees), but spent most of my time in the tiny dormer room that I used as an "office" and "livingroom." One day I was reading on my fold-up "sofa" (don't ask) and suddenly smelled something godawful. I looked over and what did I see but Falstaff backed up to the space heater spraying it for all he was worth! Oh, the stench! The fan was distributing the odor of fried cat pee all through the apartment! Cat pee is bad, but cooked cat pee is even worse. It didn't last long . . . the fan promptly gave up the ghost, and the poor space heater was no more. A weak wisp of white smoke issued, and then it was over. Thank goodness it happened while I was watching, or the whole building could have gone up in [stinky] smoke!

A few months went by and I moved out of the garret and into one side of an Edwardian double house. The place was lovely, but completely unrenovated and certainly had no air conditioning. One night I had my bedroom window wide open but the air just wasn't moving and I resorted to dragging my big box fan upstairs and setting it near the window. It felt pretty great, but the night never did get any cooler, so I went to sleep leaving the fan on low.

The next morning Orpheus was just waking me up by staring when I heard an explosive BOOM and through my half-shut eyes I saw Falstaff fly straight up toward the ceiling like a cartoon and then change directions and shoot horizontally out the door, down the hall, downstairs and to the back door. Honestly, he was flying. He had blown up the box fan by spraying it dead center. Of course I was still waking up, but I was now nearly crippled with laughter over the stupid cat action. I was snorting and fell off the bed and my eyes were welling up with tears of hysteria.

Though planning to run out and find Falstaff and see if he was okay, I was immediately and thankfully distracted by something far more important: the box fan was now a flaming pinwheel threatening to set the curtains on fire. Laughing and crying at the same time, I jumped up and grabbed the handle and fled out to the driveway, where I left it to burn itself out.

When I went back in I could not find Falstaff and Orpheus was staring at me as though demanding an explanation for all this idiocy. The shenanigans had set me off schedule and I absolutely had to leave for work, so I never found out where Falstaff had gone after the deed.

I got to work a few minutes late and went in to tell my manager (a really great lady) why. I sputtered and spewed the story out and by halfway through she was crying, too. She told me the first task I had to do when I got to my desk was write an email to my department colleagues telling them "why I was late today." Throughout the day I heard titters and guffaws as people read the message.

Those are my fond memories of fans.


At 7/12/2006 9:56 AM, Blogger Tuesday said...

Oh NO! I've never heard this one -- how hysterical; really revoltingly funny and a good, good argument for lady kitties.
(And maybe even daughters too!)


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