I am being held hostage in my home. No it’s not by gun wielding men with masks or even an overbearing husband. I am being held hostage by my animals. I hate them and I swear they hate me. I think that their unquenched ultimate hatred for me is what is keeping one of them alive today. I am talking about my 16 year old Cat Sassy. She is so old she just sits at the top of the stairs and meows orders down at me.
“Meow…Bring me my food, minion.” Meow…Change my poo box, bitch!” Meow…Pet me or I will cough up a giant fur ball and a little puke and leave it in a place you are sure to walk through barefoot.”

This cat is so damn old (and fat I might add), that I actually carry her every single night from the top of the stairs into the bathroom in my husband’s office so that she can eat. I have to feed her in there because of the goat I call a dog who eats everything in his path including toys. But we will get to him later. It’s not that the cat can’t move. It’s that she refuses to move. I know she can move. I’ve seen it. I’ve seen her beat up the dog. I’ve seen her outrun the sound of the vacuum. I’ve seen her jump from our spiral staircase to a ledge in the kitchen and back again. I’ve seen this cat act like she is on her death bed to the point I have been near tears thinking, “Oh my God, this is it. My baby is dying.” And then next thing you know, she’s up again like she has just snorted a line of blow and is ready to party. That is when she walks around the house at night and meows incessantly. “Meow, meow, meow, meow.” And this will go on and on to the point where you think you are going crazy and want to run out of the house screaming! “PLEASE SOMEONE HELP ME KILL THIS CAT! SHE JUST WON’T DIE!” But there she is half blind, coughing like a smoker, arthritic, and hanging on to the last thread of life like it’s a pole and she’s a stripper.

When I first got this cat she was quite possibly the craziest cat on the entire planet. This cat was created by Satan himself. Not my old roommate Satan, but the real life Prince of Darkness. How I had acquired this demon spawn from hell should have been a warning to me, but did I listen? Nooooooo. I just had to take her. Why did I take her? Was it because I thought she was possibly the cutest sweetest thing I had ever seen? No. Did I take her because I had so much love in my heart I just wanted to spread it around? No. Did I take her because she desperately needed a home and I had one to give? No. I took her because the woman who adopted her decided to name this unclean sprit Grace and I just couldn’t let that go down.

Garth – my falsifying, sexually unfaithful, demented boyfriend at the time – and I were living together in San Diego when I moved out to pursue acting in Los Angeles. He and I decided to have a long distance relationship because I’m a dumbass and didn’t see that this was one of my many chances to break free from what was to become the worst relationship of my life. ANYWAY…his parents lived in Los Angeles and his mother called me one day.
“Stacy, do you want a kitten? She’s a stray and we just can’t keep her because of the other cats and the dog,” she said in a pleading voice over the phone. Now Garth may have been an asshole but his mother was such a sweet woman I would have pretty much done anything for her. But I did not want a kitten.
“No Melanie, I would like to help you out but I really don’t want a cat.”
“Okay,” she said deflated. Great, now I feel bad. “I’m sure we’ll be able to find it a good home.”

That weekend Garth had come up to LA to visit me and we were going over to his parents’ house for dinner. When we walked in I immediately saw the mini Beelzebub hanging from the curtains. Garth’s mom ran after the tiny terror trying to pry it from the curtains.
“Melanie, where did you find that cat?” I asked.
“Oh some nuns were going door to door trying to find its owner. It was wandering around the Catholic church down the street.” Just as she was telling me the story of the cat saving nuns I heard a high pitch yelp coming from the dog in the other room.
“GRACE LEAVE THAT DOG ALONE!!!” Garth’s mother screamed as the tiny calico wicked one came flying around the corner at break neck speed and attached herself to the arm of the couch. And there she sat, staring right at me.
“You named THAT cat Grace?” I whispered, because I didn’t want to make any loud noises or sudden movements for fear of being its next victim.
“Yes, I like the name Grace,” Garth’s mother replied in her oh so sweet manner.
“Fine, I’ll take the cat.” Sure I should have known something was up when nuns didn’t even want the cat. I should have known better when I saw it hanging from the curtains and beating up the dog. But I just couldn’t go through my life knowing that this particular cat’s name was Grace. It was a travesty of such epic proportions that something had to be done. So I brought little Lucifer home and named her Sassy and she has attacked my mother, my father, Poptart, me, my friends, my friends animals, she has even attacked a perfectly innocent pair of leather pants. She is pure and total evil but she’s all mine.

Then there is Kook. She is possibly the sweetest most destructive force of nature you have ever seen. She also was a stray in need of a home. I first met Kook over at my friend Shad’s house. His mother had found two cats: a brother and sister abandoned in an alley, and Shad called me and asked me if I wanted another cat. At this point I was starting to feel bad for Sassy because I worked a lot and felt like maybe she could use some company. So Garth and I went to Shad’s house to meet the kittens.

When we got there they were both so damn cute, I had such a hard time picking between the two. Kook’s brother was orange and Kook is kind of a grey brown. I sat down on the floor to play with both kittens and Kook’s brother kept to himself. But Kook came running right up to me and wanted to play. I didn’t pick her, she picked me.

I brought Kook home thinking Sassy was going to be so happy to have a little buddy but I was seriously mistaken. Sassy did everything in her power to kill her. Because of this constant torment from a much bigger more aggressive cat Kook figured out a pretty amazing coping skill that would become one of her most annoying habits. To avoid Sassy Kook used her claws to dig a hole in the side of the box spring of the bed. She would hide in there whenever Sassy was out for blood. But that wasn’t enough. She then dug a hole in the couch. She climbed under the cushions and dug herself right into the couch itself. One day I was sitting on the couch reading when I heard a muffled “Meow,” coming from the back of the couch. It took so long to get her out I seriously considered cutting her out of the couch to free her. Since then she has destroyed carpets in rental apartments that I have had to pay for, numerous couches, and the icing on the cake was when she destroyed a pair of beautiful antique chairs that we inherited from Poptart’s grandmother. This was not a good day in the Poptart household.

When Poptart and I finally bought our first house almost one year ago I wanted to get some new furniture because ours was all in tatters. And not like it just looked a little bad. No this cat made the couches and chairs look like they had gotten into a fight with Wolverine and lost.
“I’m sorry Stacy but we can’t buy any new furniture until we do something about Kook,” my husband told me. And he was right, we had two options. One, we could find her a new home. This was not really an option considering she’s 12 years old and has been a part of our family the whole time. I just couldn’t let her go. Then there was option number two. And I can’t believe I’m even going to say this, but we were going to have to declaw the cat. I really didn’t want to do it, but we didn’t have any other choice. She was just too damn destructive. So it was done.

And that’s when the war of the poo officially began. Oh, the great war of poo. It seemed like an innocent mistake at first. We have two sets of stairs in our house. The stairs in the back of the house are a nice, easy to clean, metal and tile staircase. The staircase in the front of the house is a beautiful hardwood staircase that was one of the big selling points for us. I LOVE these stairs. My husband has even said that I love the stairs and hardwood floors more than I love him and Mini Me and I’m sure there are times that this may be true. I have cleaned and polished these stairs one by one by hand until they sparkled. And that’s where Kook decided to strike. I cleaned up the first poo thinking to myself, Hummm; maybe she doesn’t like her new kitty litter. But I didn’t have a choice. Because of her claw surgery I had to use a specific type of kitty litter. So I cleaned out the box and put some fresh litter in. And she struck again. I bought a second box just for her. And she struck again. And again. And again. After she healed I put her regular litter back in but she didn’t care. She continued to poo. I put her food on the stairs because one of my friends told me cats wouldn’t shit where they eat. This stopped her for a couple of days and then she just picked a different stair to wreak her revenge. At one point I saw both her and Sassy upstairs openly mocking me. They had attaché cases and blueprints and were planning their next attack. I’ll get you bitches you just wait. At this point I was sleep deprived because of Sassy’s all night meowing and completely crazed by Kook’s unyielding poop bombs.

Next I started laying blankets on the stairs. This also worked. But it made going up and down the stairs tricky and eventually she pooped on those too. I eventually started stalking the cat. If she went anywhere near the stairs I would chase her yelling at her. Look at what these cats have reduced me to. I’m completely crazy! I couldn’t stop her. She was wining the war. Nothing could stop her. Nothing…except a dog named Gary.

Gary. Oh, Gary. *Shaking my head back and forth* Let me tell you a little about Gary. My daughter used to LOVE the pet store. We would make a trip to it once a week. We would go in and see the “puppies and the kitties.” That’s what she would always say to me. “Mommy, I want to go see the puppies and the kitties.” So we did. The pet store we always go to doesn’t sell animals they only have adoptions. Which I really like. They do sell birds and fish though. But the cats and dogs are all rescue animals. Mini Me and I had been going there for months and petting the animals and I had seen some pretty cute animals. But when I saw Gary it was like a scene from a romance novel. He and I locked eyes and ran towards eachother. I just knew that I had to have this dog. I was in love with him. He was scrappy, hairy, and unkempt. He was perfect! I bent down to his little caged in area and put my fingers in and he went crazy. I was officially in love with him.

I told Poptart about him and showed him the pictures I had taken of him with my phone. I knew if we wanted this dog we were going to have to move fast. The three of us drove over to the pet store that Saturday with the idea of just “looking” at him. Or so my husband thought. Next thing he knew we had a dog.

Gary is the most misbehaved dog I have ever seen in my life. If you open the door a tiny bit he will make a run for it. Then once he gets outside he runs up and down the street like his tail is on fire. He barks at everyone. I even had a man try and come back and hit him two days ago. I kept trying to tell the man “Gary just wants to play with you.” But I could tell the man didn’t want to play with Gary. Poor misunderstood Gary.

Since Gary has been in the house Kook has stopped going to the bathroom on the stairs. Why? Because she’s always on the run. Gary thinks the cats are here for his personal enjoyment. Sassy has a new lease on life because I think she’s just trying to outlive the dog.

Taking Gary for a walk is an interesting exercise. He’s so excited to be outside that he tears ass up and down the park, but eventually wears himself out and I’ve had to carry him home. He uses his doggie door to go outside to bark at the neighbors and then comes back inside to poop on the carpet. Gary is a complete and total menace. He has eaten toys. Not parts of toys. Whole toys. My daughter was given an Olympic Barbie for her birthday. The set up is that Barbie is a gymnastics coach, and it comes with “Kelly,” her little gymnast trainee. Kelly’s feet have little holes in the heel so that you can attach her to a balance beam. Then you move a handle on the balance beam and Kelly does tricks. I should say she used to do tricks. Gary ate her feet so now she doesn’t do anything.
“Barry ate my Barbie. She’s broken,” my daughter told me with her footless Barbie in her tiny hand.
“Honey, she’s not broken, she’s special,” I told her trying my hardest not to laugh in front of her. Second my kid turned her back I had a picture of footless Barbie on Facebook faster than you can wheelchair

Speaking of which, apparently Mattel no longer makes the wheelchair-bound Barbie and I have informed them that they need to take Barbie’s special needs into account. Jim at the corporate office told me one should be here in the next 6-8 weeks. Now I just do my best to throw away the half eaten toys before my daughter can find them. We have other Barbies with missing hands, a Snow White that looks like she has been in a terrible car accident, and wooden train tracks that have literally been chewed to bits. The upside of this whole thing is that my daughter has a new best friend. Regardless of how many toys he destroys she loves her “Barry.”

So you see if I’m a little crazy it’s not my fault. I’m living in a mad house. So if you happen to find my body and I’m missing my feet, I’m covered in poo and a note on me that says “Grace was here.” You’ll know my animals did it. Otherwise I’m just going to have to wait patiently and just hope I have what it takes to outlive them all.

Love it? Hate it? Let me know! Send questions, comments, brownie recipes or random brainfarts to: mrsdiagnosed@yahoo.com


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