Saturday, April 23, 2011

Cat Lady (or, "Why I Want to be a Hobo")

It occurred to me recently that I am well on my way to being a crazy cat lady.

I have three (yes, THREE) cats.  And my boyfriend has two.  Which means if we were ever to live together, we would then have five (5) cats.

That seems... excessive.

The really bad thing about this?  It wouldn't be the first time I've had five cats.

This picture was taking in late 2005, after my house flooded in New Orleans and I moved in with my parents.  The cats are:  Theta (top), Elvira, or "Ellie" (black), Matilda, or "Tillie"(tortoiseshell), Jazz (right with darker ears), and  Blues (bottom).  Ellie and Tillie were my cats when I was in middle school and high school.  When I left, they stayed with my parents.  Theta was a birthday present from my sister in 2001, and Jazz and Blues were my former boss' cats, and refugees from New Orleans.  Basically, we had too many cats.  Ellie and Tillie didn't live much longer after this, they were already nearing 20  years old and had been on Thyroid medications for about half that.  There was also a dog.  In this picture they were waiting to be fed.  With five cats, you don't hesitate to feed them on time, because they will start looking at you like they might eat you.

When I was in high school, I had this dream of being a crazy old lady living in the haunted house on the top of the hill.  I had it pictured perfectly.  Leaky roof, and rotten floorboards, and a thousand cats.  I would know all of them by name.  I would never cut or comb my hair, so it would be long, and gray, and fly-away.  I would wear a bathrobe to the grocery store, and always get the squeaky cart.  I would fill it with an eclectic variety of food along with all of the boxes of Cocoa Pebbles in the store, and then wander off and leave the cart by the pharmacy.

But you see, that was a joke.  I didn't expect that I might actually live that life.

It is possible that my only escape is to become a hobo.

The more I think about it, the more appealing living my life ridin' the rails sounds.  Let's break this down:

My Job:
There is always this back and forth motion in my life regarding "working for a living".  Work stresses me out, so I don't have the time or energy to do the things I would like to do, or paint or make art, or write a novel.  But when I don't work, I get distracted by things like "eating" and "making rent", and I end up not making art, but daydreaming about food and elaborate schemes to eat all of the free samples in the store before they drag me away kicking and screaming.  Even if I have enough food to start out, I don't have enough art supplies to actually make art or (gasp) try to sell it.

If I were a hobo, I could make my art with shoplifted spray paint on the sides of trains.  My art would certainly be more noticeable than it is now.

My Car:
Don't get me wrong.  I love my car.  I wanted my car when it was new, back in 1999.  But because I tend to sabotage myself every few years by quitting whatever job I have and trying to "make it" as an artist, I have never trusted that I would be able to make car payments, so I never bought my dream car.  Until a year ago.  And I got my 1999 Audi A4.  And I paid cash.

Yes, it has 124,900 miles on it.  Yes, it has a tape deck.  It's still my favoritest car EVER.  The problem is that she is an expensive little bitch, and I had to shell out nearly a month's take-home wages to get her to pass emissions.

Sure, I couldn't afford that as a hobo, but then, I wouldn't have a car at all as a hobo. I would be riding trains or something.  You spend less when you have less.

I would certainly save money by actually wearing out my jeans, instead of purchasing pre-stressed fashion jeans.  And I would still fit in.  Hell, I would even have my natural body odor as perfume, instead of purchasing expensive Au du Hobo at Urban Outfitters.  For once in my life, I would be one of the cool kids.*

Diet and Fitness:
Here I am, day after day, trying to eat less and exercise more so that one day, I too, can be considered "hawt".  I have never been.

If I were a hobo, not only would I get toned legs and abs from constant walking, running from store managers, and leaping on to moving trains, but I would have a very limited supply of food.  I have a feeling that homelessness would be the Best.  Diet.  Ever.  Even better than the flu.

I would be all Hawt Hobo.

The more I think about this, the better it sounds...  I would probably even be better equipped to survive the inevitable zombie apocalypse...

Yeah.  I totally want to be a hobo when I grow up.

Mom will be so proud.

*It turns out that Urban Outfitters doesn't actually sell a perfume called Au du Hobo.  I was mistaken.  They just sell patchouli oil, which smells like the same thing to me.


Timmah said...

This whole "cat lady" thing is a problem that's easily remedied:

1. Adopt a dog.
2. Train dog to eat cats.
3. Adopt cats like crazy.
4. Relax.

Remember: cat's are just furry, moving furniture. The NICE thing about cats is that they don't have personalities; there's no such thing as an irreplaceable cat, and one's as good as any other, because they just don't give a crap about you, anyway.

Not a dog person? Buy too many cats. Before long, you'll be grateful to the dog for making your home livable, again.

Stop looking at me like that. It's no crazier than living with 3+ cats.

Leauxra said...

HAH! I actually really really want a Great Dane. Because I'm stupid or something. But more to the point, Timmah, I HAVE a dog. Who thinks she's a cat. She's a rottie/great pyrenees mix (so you would think she would be huge, but she only got to be about 40 lbs (OK, 50, but she's kinda overweight)).

And cats DO have personalities. It's just kinda rare to have a cat with a personality that doesn't involve your general destruction.

MJ Morgan, Writer said...

I know/knew all those cats! Bonnie and Merlin, too. :)

Anonymous said...

I think the most cats I've ever had is 6... with 4 dogs. In a 4-room house (not 4 bedrooms, 4 ROOMS). And I think Hobo Diet may be too strenuous, but then my own personal diet guru has always been Henry the Eighth.

Anonymous said...

They're all so pretty! Have you only ever had long-haired cats?

Preparing for the zombie apocalypse is always a good thing.

Leauxra said...

hoodyhoo: I think the hobo thing is a no go. A friend of mine pointed out that I am too addicted to hygiene to make a good hobo. Back to the drawing board!

thoughtsappear: ALWAYS be prepared for the zombie apocalypse. Always. Also, yes, I have always had long haired cats. It isn't a preference, it's just how things turn out. My boyfriend has a black cat that looks remarkably like Ellie above, and a short haired white and gray tabby. Last night they both laid down on my legs (they hate each other), and my boyfriend called me the "cat whisperer". I am pretty sure if I end up with 5 cats again, I am going to start calling myself Snow White and seeing if I can get the messy little bundles of love to clean up the house for me.

Leauxra said...

hoodyhoo: Also, you win. 6 cats is a whole lot of pointy meowy love.

Heather said...

I think this sounds like a reasonable plan. It could turn out well on a lot of fronts. Keep blogging though.....I don't actually know any hobos.