THE OLD NEW NORMAL, Chapter 11: Make With the Treats Already!

By Liz McLeod
Again Your House Manager
 
“No, I say!” gusted Miss Carol T. Cat. “Indubitably NO! Take it away AT ONCE!”
 
I sighed, which is pretty much the limit of my capacity to communicate these days, as I scraped up the moistened Felimazole tablet with the point of a kitchen knife.
 
“THE GALL!” snorted Miss Carol, her whiskers aquiver with the utter indignity of it all. “The UNMITIGATED gall! Despite my continued remonstrances you CONTINUE in your bumbling attempts to induce me to consume that repellent tablet by concealing it in a foul gelatinous mass! WHAT CRUST!”
 
“It’s a TREAT!” I wheedled, in a lame attempt to follow the good Dr. Einstein’s definition of insanity. “Look, it says right here on the bag – ‘IRRESTISTABLES!’”
 
“Whoever termed them thus was careless with his nomenclature,” sneered Miss Carol. “They are, in fact, highly resistable. Especially when tainted by your unspeakable potion. No, I say, your feeble attempts at ‘trick and treat’ shall go unrewarded.”
 
“It’s Trick OR Treat,” I mumbled. “At least get it right.”
 
“Bah,” Miss Carol interjected, and nobody can interject like Miss Carol. “Bah!” she repeated for emphasis.
 
“Look,” I complained, “if I keep handling this stuff I’m gonna get more of it into me than into you. Look at me. What’s happening to my thyroid? I’m gaining weight, I’m moving slow, my vision is blurred, I’m tired and sluggish, I can’t think straight, and I’m always cold!”
 
“And this differs from your usual state how so?
 
“Go ahead,” I grumbled, as I popped another iodine supplement in hopes of counteracting the Felimazole now soaking thru my fingertips. “Be funny. But you’re the one who needs to take the pill, and you’re gonna take the pill if I have to sit here all night!”
 
Now it was Miss Carol’s turn to “hah,” because she knows I can’t do that. Because the next couple of weeks at the Strand are bustling with activity as we wrap up October with a couple of first-class movies, an outstanding opera, and our latest “Strand on the Air” broadcast. On the screen we’ve got the delightful comedy-drama “Falling for Figaro,” the story of a young woman who cashes it all in in hopes of getting her big break as an opera singer, followed by benedict Cumberbatch – yes, HIMSELF! – in “The Electrical Life of Louis Wain,” the story of an eccentric British artist  with a thing for painting psychedelic cats.
 
And on top of that, the Metropolitan Opera’s bringing us Terence Blanchard’s groundbreaking jazz-inflected opera “Fire Shut Up In My Bones!” And then, from the heights of high culture to the guilty pleasures of the proletarian, our latest Strand On The Air broadcast takes you down to Abysmal Point for a chilling adventure up the wooded side of Pogy Hill, as Mrs Grunden and company deal with the horrors of alien abduction! And if that’s not enough, we’ll also have as our musical guests family favorites Bee Parks and the Hornets – whom you can also enjoy thru November 1st in the Strand’s exclusive streaming concert “Spooky Bugs!” Is that a spectacular Halloween package or what?
 
“Psychedelic cats?” interrupted Miss Carol. “Elucidate!”
 
“It’s art with cats in it, only, I dunno, psychedelic,” I stammered back. “Whattaya want from me? I haven’t seen the movie yet.”
 
“Nonsense,” scoffed Miss Carol. “Felids, as you know, do not partake of psychoactive pharmaceutical products of any kind. I myself forswear even the dubious pleasures of catnip. I am, as you know, hard-core ‘straight edge.’”
 
“Sez you,” I laughed. “Because when you had your mouth open just then, I flipped the pill inside! Direct hit!”
 
Miss Carol’s bright green eyes tripled in size as she involuntarily swallowed. “Hmph!” she gruffed as she stalked away. “Ridiculous fat barrel hew-mon!”
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