Past Imperfect

Past Imperfect – #169

The narrator on the nature documentary is speaking in a hushed but soothing baritone…

“As expected, the attendees at the national convention of a certain religious organization refused to take their blinders off. Otherwise, they would be forced to see the effects of hypocrisy and the cherry-picking of dogma, and that just wouldn’t do. Still, they all got a free toaster oven that promised to imprint the bleached image of Jesus on their favorite choice of bread. And if they signed up for the “Monthly Twenty-Percent Tithing of Income” level of worship, they could take that special toaster oven with them when they proceeded to their now-guaranteed spot in Heaven.”

“Excuse me.”

The narrator looks down, soothingly, and spies a furball. He hits a button to pause the recording.

Cleo the Cat: “Whatcha doin?”

The Narrator: “I’m working on a project for Netflix. Everyone is doing it these days.”

Cleo the Cat: “I’m not, so that’s a lie.”

The Narrator: “Well, you never work on anything. We all know you don’t provide a revenue stream here at Bonnywood.”

Cleo the Cat: “I don’t work because I’m royalty. We’ve discussed this.”

The Narrator: “We’ve also discussed the fact that this has never been proven.”

Cleo the Cat: “Then you didn’t do enough research. You’re a lousy documentarian.”

The Narrator: “Fine. Don’t you have somewhere else to be? I hear there’s a couch in the den that you haven’t completely ripped to shreds.”

Cleo the Cat: “Nope. I got nothing in my day-planner except ‘go see what Daddy is doing’. That’s it.”

The Narrator: “Then come up with a new agenda. Run along and let me get back to business.”

Cleo the Cat: “I want to help.”

The Narrator, stunned: “I’ve never heard you say anything remotely like that. Are you feeling okay? What can you possibly do?”

Cleo the Cat: “I can help write the story.” She jumps on the desk and peruses the image on the laptop screen, contemplating, then: “What about that empty chair? Say something about that.”

The Narrator scans the photo again. “Ah, good catch. Hang on.” He restarts the recording.

“A careful observer will note the empty chair in the lower left. This seat has been reserved for anyone who actually attended Trump’s abysmal inauguration, a seat that remained empty throughout the Toaster Oven Convention. Despite his continual gaslighting, Trump’s administration was nothing but smoke and mirrors.”

The Narrator hits the pause button once again.

Cleo the Cat: “Okay, that’ll work. I’m done now. Bye.” She hops down from the desk.

The Narrator: “Wait, we still need to finish the story.”

Cleo the Cat: “You expect me to do two things in one day? You need to get over that mess. Royalty, remember?” She then hoists a leg and begins to clean her hoo-hoo, because there’s simply no sense of proper comportment when it comes to felines and hoo-hoo maintenance.

The Narrator: “I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. Cats never finish the job.”

Cleo the Cat lowers her leg. “Really? Well, how about this tidbit. Some people did show up for the smoke and mirrors inauguration. And you’re related to one of them.”

Suddenly, The Narrator has a rapid-fire visual flashback, a la “The Usual Suspects” movie. The questionably-high Visa bill from January 2017 with an array of cryptic charges, the fading memory from that same month of Cleo presumably hiding under the bed longer than she normally did, and the strange, clearly-forged passport issued under the name of “Cletis the Cat” he had found at the bottom of his underwear drawer. “Wait a minute. Did you go to Trump’s inauguration?”

Cleo the Cat: “Maybe I did, maybe I didn’t. If you would ever get around to properly researching my history, you’ll find that royalty doesn’t have to answer any questions they don’t want to answer.” She turns and begins to sashay out of the room.

The Narrator processes this intel for a moment, then he whacks at the button to restart the documentary soundtrack.

“As the Toaster Oven Convention drew to a close, several things became clear. One, the promised Jesus image on the toast turned out to bear a striking resemblance to Bart Simpson. Two, the International Federation of Actual Cherry-Pickers were suing the convention organizers for maligning their image as decent people who were simply trying to harvest produce. And Three, never trust a cat that claims to be royalty.”

From the other end of the house, Cleo: “I can hear you.”

The Narrator Daddy: “Good.”

Previously published on “Crusty Pie”, massively revised and extended for this share on Bonnywood. (The original version was merely the first paragraph for The Narrator.) I’ll keep you posted on the shocking development that we might have a Republican living at Bonnywood….

34 replies »

  1. How could your family NOT have an entire branch of Republicans, living where you do? I’m not saying it’s a close branch, but…
    I’m very curious what Cleo’s motivation was. Is she a 2A supporter? Does she want to lie with impunity? Is she after a book deal? Her own show on FOX?
    Enquiring minds want to know.

    (The preceeding was typed under orders from Queen Sophie-Anne Cat)

    Liked by 2 people

    • Oh, it’s a close branch. Most in my traditional family are staunchly conservative. Luckily, we also have our chosen families…

      I suspect that Cleo’s errant behavior is based on getting attention and nothing more. She claims to not want any attention, we proceed to not give her any, and then she gets truculent. Sound familiar?

      This might be a harsh blow, but I just discovered Queen Sophie-Anne Cat’s name in Cleo’s email distribution. (She has the list password-protected, but “tuna” is almost always the key.) Be prepared for an insurrection when you least expect it…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I refuse to believe Cleo is a Republican. More than likely she was involved in a shady deal for some black market catnip being smuggled in through Ivanka’s failed clothing line.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Ohhh… that makes much more sense. I should have caught on to such, since just the other day I spied Cleo trouncing around in a pair of designer panties from Ivanka’s line, with said panties being embroidered with the line “I have a privileged muff!”. I really need to pay more attention…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Why DO animals (we’re targeting ‘pets’ here, of the canine and feline variety though) lick their private bits? (faint drum riff) Because they CAN. (faint guffaws and snickering worthy of any 5th grade boy who has discovered what ‘private bits’ really are).. Okay we got that out of the way. King Ziggy, the Terminally Bored, felt he ought to chime in. He says to tell Cleo that although cats were indeed worshiped in that hot mess of a country where her ancestors come from, that his own ancestors were royalty too, but in Europe which is more widely acceptable vis a vis temperature. His great-great-(great?) grand-daddy was the official Rat Killer Supremo during the Black Plague, being a terrier and bred to kill rats (and other small squeeky things like dog toys).. And we wonder why they (pets who claim to be royals) are so complex. It’s all that in breeding… (Ouch! I just got a vicious nip for writing/saying that last sentence)…. You’ll find me in the dungeon behind the wine bottles…

    Liked by 2 people

    • And this whole animalistic (faint drum riff) behavior, with the tonguing of the private bits, is made even more annoying by how nonchalant they are about the proceedings. “See how easy it is for me to do this? I can do it all day. But you can’t. Sucks to be you.”

      King Ziggy does have a point, in that canines were/are more revered in more places, but it just goes to show the opinions vary from culture to culture. Royalty in one region might be mere rat-catchers in another. Life is complex, eh?

      Sorry to hear that you’ve been confined to the dungeon. It’s the price we pay for honest writing. I’m contemplating a rescue mission, but since I brought up honesty, I should forewarn you that I will probably save the wine bottles first… 😉


  4. Who says cats never do anything? Just two days ago Mr. Cat, through some magic of his own, managed to open up a folder on my computer desktop and then opened a file within that folder and left 96 copies of a picture of me standing naked in the snow on top of Kearsarge Pass.

    I’d have turned it into a blog post if I hadn’t already.

    Liked by 2 people

      • Having opposable thumbs has its benefits, eh? I suspect our Royal overseers (I’d say “lords” but that’s a bit sexist toward ladies oh phoo) best remember that the food doesn’t magically appear, but that their servants and peons bring it. In all senses of the phrase!

        Liked by 2 people

  5. What is ““Monthly Twenty-Percent Tithing of Income”? I thought tithing is 10%. I googled “smoke and mirrors” and it is such a beautiful phrase. LOL. Is there really a “toaster over” convention with image of epiphany showing up? Or something similar? That’s hilarious. I don’t think people believe those things. People just don’t have anything else to do I guess.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I just made up the “Twenty-Percent Tithing” angle just to show my dissatisfaction with the whole tithing concept. I don’t think anyone should feel compelled to give up a certain percentage of their income, no matter how fervently they may believe in the religion of their choice. Some people (most people, actually) cannot afford such. I find the whole matter ludicrous and inconsiderate.

      And yes, the “smoke and mirrors” phrase is quite apt. So much of what is going on in society is just that. We just have to be, individually, strong enough to learn the truth and not be swayed by the smoke or the mirrors…


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