Note: This bit from the archives is not necessarily a Thanksgiving story, but it does involve turkey, so I’m latching on to that and running with it…
So, I innocently wander into the kitchen, wanting a little snack but not really sure what that might entail. I’m not dying of hunger, but I’m at that age when the simple things please me, like shoving food in my mouth when I don’t really need it. (It’s Friday night. 30 years ago I would be at the local disco, sucking down shots like a baby calf. Now? I just want munchies that are not fueled by recreational drugs and won’t wreak havoc on my digestive system.)
I bang around in the fridge for a bit, dissatisfied with the first 473 things I encounter, because I have focus issues and there are just too many stacks of mundane crap possibly blocking a jewel of deliciousness. I finally drag out a plastic-domed deli tray left over from our low-key New Year’s Eve celebration. (It was just me, Partner, and the cats, a very-limited guest list based on our lack of planning anything substantial and a general fatigue after the roller coaster of Christmas Week.)
This particular tray involved little segments of ham and turkey wraps, originally arranged in a very pleasing, circular manner. (This was no longer the case, because hungry people destroy art without a second thought.) In the grand scheme of things, there were maybe four total wraps that had been diced and then deployed in a subterfuge to make it look like there were thousands of wraps involved. We probably could have made the platter ourselves for about five bucks, but the allure of someone else doing the actual menial labor was intoxicating. (“Oh, look, they’ve already done the cutting for us. Throw that in the shopping cart.”)
I set the tray on the kitchen counter, and it was at this point that everything went to hell. Firstly, I couldn’t get the damn thing open. I don’t know why I was having so much trouble, as we had clearly breached the security gates in the past, based on the surviving wrap widgets that were randomly scattered about the battlefield that I couldn’t reach. (When did they start making child-proof deli trays? And what magical word did we utter on our previous visit that helped us gain access?) I struggled and sweated, determined to nosh on the nibbles.
Suddenly, the lid of the tray came ripping off with an alarming noise that the former citizens of Pompeii probably heard just before they realized that their vacation destination was about to be downgraded on TripAdvisor. Not prepared for this achievement, I exerted a little bit too much backswing and the lid went sailing away to a part of the house that I probably don’t clean as much as I should. (Someone or something at the landing site screamed, but I really didn’t have time to investigate that as I was on a mission.)
Hopped up on the adrenaline of having conquered non-biodegradable plastic storage, I lunged for one of the widgets. (I believe I was aiming for turkey, a thoughtful act on my part as the other human in the house prefers pig products over fowl. These are just things you consider in a long-term relationship.) Sadly, I was unaware that the turkey chunk had its own agenda and “consumption” was not on its bucket list.
The turkey fought back. I had barely closed my gluttonous fingers around the wedge of wrap when it went on the offensive. It flew out of my hand, sailed through the air, smacked to the floor, and then hopscotched its way into the cat’s water bowl. Naturally, the cat that I haven’t seen for a week chose this exact moment to sashay into the kitchen, briefly survey the damage, and then just look at me. (Why are you doing this, Daddy? I’ve been faithfully not bothering you while you’re blogging, an edict you put in writing and had me paw-sign, and then you defile my water bowl despite my good behavior. Now do you understand why I clean myself all day? This environment is toxic.)
I ignored the cat. (Dude, you are constantly dunking all your sparkly cat toys in your water bowl. You have no shame and no limits. That wedge of turkey wrap is by no means the worst thing that’s been baptized in your trough.) I reached down, scooped up the now-slimy bit of turkey roll, turned toward the sink, and hurled the wet mess of gunk at the sink. My intention was to banish the errant turkey tidbit to the depths of Hades, which in some circles is known as the garbage disposal.
I apparently erred a bit in my trajectory calculations.
Rather than willingly succumb to the gravitational pull of the drain, the turkey missile chose to avoid the death-knell of the sink completely and head for less-unsavory territory, namely the demilitarized zone just to the left of the sink. Descending from my ill-planned flight path, the chunk plunked with amazing agility right into my coffee cup from earlier in the day. (Setting the scene: I slowly relish my daily mug of java, taking only a sip or two over several hours, because I have an anxiety disorder which bodes ill with excessive amounts of caffeine at one time. Long story. What you need to know: There were still clouds in my coffee, clouds in my coffee, and…)
The chunk splashed down in the mug like one of the Apollo missions returning to Earth. A spray of watery brown exploded upwards, drenching the cabinet door just above, with rivulets of mess peppering the counter like acid rain on a really bad day. I sighed, the cat sighed. I grabbed a sponge and went to work. The cat didn’t grab anything and still managed to judge me. Eventually I had it all cleaned up, sending the sodden bit of recalcitrant turkey down the drain, along with the remnants of my clouded coffee and my self-esteem.
Then I marched back over to the fridge, because I was still hungry. The cat hoisted a leg and started cleaning himself…
Previously published. Minor revisions made for this post. And, for those of you in the know of long ago, yes, the cat involved was Scotch. He thought it would be fun to have an unbilled walk-on. I agreed to such, as appeasement for having turned his water into a very thin turkey soup…
Categories: My Life