May 8, 2013
So yesterday while my lilly white ass was lying by the pool getting sunburned with The Hub, I guess that he got sick of hearing my incessantly awesome chatter because he got up and started wandering around looking at shrubbery and cleaning out pool filters and other stuff that was out of earshot of my mouth sounds. By the way, that is definitely something I recommend NEVER EVER doing. Not the eyeballing of the shrubbery. Shrubbery is lovely and you should look at it every chance you get. I’m talking about the pool filters. THAT you should stay away from because of the fact that pool filters get some scary ass stuff in them like snakes and water breathing mega spiders and amputated body parts.
Okay okay I’ve never actually SEEN an amputated body part in a pool filter, but I’ve also never looked. So I can’t really prove it either way. But if someone has found a finger or an ear in their Nachos Bell Grande (which I think I saw on the news once) then I’m pretty sure someone has found a toe or a tongue or something in their pool filter. Don’t you watch movies? People are always getting mob whacked next to pools and then splash! Into the pool they go. Alligators also like to swim in pools and let’s say you dive in for a moonlight swim and there’s a gator in there and he eats you but he thinks your left big toes tastes like an athletes footy fungus, so he spits it out. That’s gonna go into the filter. Then he’s gonna climb out and go back to his alligator nest and there’s your toe in the filter while he’s nowhere to be found, then everyone’s all like “How did this toe end up in the filter? And where is Bob?”
Anyways…The Hub was wandering around while I was lying on my chair daydreaming about Nachos Bell Grande, when suddenly I heard him say “Patti! You’re gonna wanna see this.” Of course the first thing I thought was that he had found some kind of tarantula to taunt me with, so I said “I don’t think I do.” Then he said “Get over here!” and I said “I know it’s a spider. It’s a spider, right? I KNOW IT’S A SPIDER!” Then he said “No it’s not a spider. Just get over here!” So I did, because (a) Sometimes it’s sexy when he’s bossy like that, and (b) Sometimes it’s annoying when he’s bossy like that, but I couldn’t hit him unless I went over there. So I went over there and for once The Hub wasn’t being a wank. THIS is what he found:
No. Not the finger. The tiny little turtle.
(But I bet for a second there you thought it was a murdery mob finger, right?)
After a few super squeals of epic proportion, I immediately picked him up, took him back to my chair, and sat down for a little one-on-one interview. He told me that his name was Shelldon Greenburg III and that he likes slow walks under our palm tree and short dips in the tiny puddle on our patio. He said that he loves Katy Perry, snow cones, and the Twilight series. I know. I know. I tried to talk some sense into him but Selldon is all kinds of stubborn. He said that loves to play backgammon, Monopoly, and croquet. I KNOW! How the heck does he play croquet, right? That’s exactly what I asked him when he told me. And you know what he said? He said “Bitch puhleeze. You don’t know my life.”
And he was right. This bitch do NOT know his life.
I REALLY wanted to keep him. I’ve always wanted a little turtle. But every time I put him down he started to run away. Fast. Yes, that little booger could move! Then I started to have flashbacks of my Mexico trip and I felt that same stress well up again and I wasn’t sure if I could take on the responsibility of a turtle again. Add to that the fact that just watching his little legs try to run was giving me severe PTSD and I was starting to see imaginary crabs everywhere, and I was kinda super freaking out.
THEN I started thinking about the last time we had a little, slimy, animal in our family. Things did not turn out so well.
His name was Frog. The Boy got him as a birthday gift. He was an African something something frog. I don’t remember the correct name for him. That’s just not my style. But he was an albino frog. He was tiny. He lived in water. He liked listening to Elmo CD’s. He was kind of anti-social. He had a death wish.
That covers the important parts.
The Boy used to try to play with him, but Frog wasn’t having it. He obviously had some major issues. Sure…every now and then if The Boy would trace his finger alongside the aquarium, Frog would follow it. The Boy liked this. But to this day I think that Frog only did that to manipulate The Boy into thinking they were BFF’s so that when it was all over, The Boy would be sad. Frog was selfish like that.
One wintery morning when it was still dark outside and my alarm went off, I got up to start my day. I had the same routine every morning: Pee, start the coffee, walk down the hall to the front door and turn off the porch light, go back and get the coffee. On this particular morning something terrible happened on my way to the front door. I was walking barefoot across the wood floors, when suddenly I stepped on something. Something squishy. Something moody. Something albino-y.
Frog obviously knew my routine and had planned to have me kill him all along. My guess is that he wanted to make a dramatic exit from this world, plus make The Boy hate me for killing him. But I was one step ahead of him. And one step on top of him.
After I jumped around for awhile gagging and screaming, I went to wash my foot about 10 times, then grabbed a paper towel, scooped him up and took him back upstairs to the tank and dropped him in. My plan was to just pretend that he had died in his sleep instead of somehow escaping from his tank, hopping down the hallway, making his way downstairs, and lying in wait in the foyer for me to crush the life out of him.
When The Boy got up and there was absolutely zero mention of a dead frog floating around in the tank, I was confused. I was sure there would be a big scene kinda like the one in Mask when Cher found Eric Stoltz all dead in his bed and that The Boy would be putting pins in his map while listening to his Elmo CD. But no. There was nothing. So I went to investigate.
Not only was Frog alive, but he was acting like nothing had happened. He was all nonchalant like my full morning pre-poop body weight had NOT just crushed the holy hell out of him.
WHAT KIND OF PSYCHOTIC GAME WAS HE PLAYING???
I didn’t know WTF was going on, but I just went with the flow.
Within 48 hours I could see that he was having severe internal bleeding. Frog was an albino and when you’re albino those things are easy to see because your skin goes from white to totally opposite of white. The Boy noticed the change in color too, and although my first instinct was to lie and say that Frog had been on an overnight vacation to The Bahamas or something and had gotten the frog equivalent of a suntan, I ended up telling him the cold, hard, squishy truth: He tried to commit suicide by jumping off the upstairs balcony.
Ok. It wasn’t the TRUTH truth but it was close enough. For all I know Frog HAD jumped from the balcony to the downstairs hall instead of taking the stairs. It couldn’t be proven wither way, but there was no way in hell that I was gonna let Frog drag me into his selfish web of drama, deceit, and death. I would not have my son thinking that his mom had attempted murder on his first pet.
After Frog was put back into his tank, we stacked books on top of the lid so that he couldn’t bust out and try to kill himself again. Miraculously enough, he lived a whole month before his internal injuries got the best of him. Once he kicked the bucket, The Boy was ok with it. Since Frog was in intensive care for a month he had prepared himself for the inevitable and he handled it with grace and strength, meaning that he was only 6-years-old and he totally didn’t give a shit and immediately asked us when he could get a real pet, like a cat.
We now have a cat. We’ve had her for 3 years. I’ve stepped on her approximately infinity times and she still isn’t dead. THIS size pet is obviously the size that I need.
So I couldn’t keep little Shelldon the turtle. And truth be told, Shelldon the turtle wouldn’t let me keep him anyways. He didn’t have a death wish. He wasn’t on a suicide mission like Frog. Shelldon longed for the open road and the old school hobo ways. He wanted to wander. Shelldon didn’t want no walls, you guys. Shelldon wanted the great wide open. Shelldon wanted to roam. And Shelldon didn’t wanna get stepped on by a blonde giant on her way to get a caffeine fix.
So I put Shelldon under a bush and let him go. I told him to follow his dreams and live long and prosper. Then I tried to do that little Star Trek fingermajig, but it wouldn’t work so I just flipped him off instead. But I flipped him off with love.
The next day I saw The cat attacking something in the bushes. And whatever it was, I’m pretty sure she ate it. I did not investigate. I don’t want to know and I try not to think about the possibilities. It’s the circle of life, you guys. Sometimes you live in the wild, and other times you end up at my house where you get stepped on or eaten by a cat.
ATTENTION: The winner of last week’s caption contest is Kathy Coleman. Congratulations Kathy! You win a copy of the book I Just Want To Pee Alone, signed by myself, RachRiot, and Kelley’s Breakroom. You have until Saturday, May 11th to claim your prize at firstname.lastname@example.org
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