Today is trash day — and no matter what your political sensibilities are, it’s not to be confused with Veterans Day, Labor Day, Christmas Day, or Sandra Day O’Connor. It’s kind of like how “Smart Water” isn’t like “cold water,” but don’t get me started on this.
I ask Guido if there’s anything she wants to go through before I haul out the bag from the kitchen. Sometimes she wants me to wait until she empties the litter pan or gives up on some ancient leftovers and rotted produce.
“Yeah,” she says. “This morning when I walked the dog we had to step over a dead rat on the front step. Big one, too. Looks like somebody ate a chunk out of it — there was a hole in the chest cavity — and vomited it right back on top. Guess it didn’t taste as good as it looked.”
By now I’m inching toward the bathroom in case I, like one of our darling kittens, also have to heave, even without a mouthful of freshly killed rodent vittles.
“I already wrapped everything up in a bag,” she continues, “but it needs to go out back.”
She returns to her breakfast of yoghurt and whatever that shit is she sprinkles over it. Fairy dust, I guess.
Hollywood is rat-infested, although there are a lot fewer instances of rodent damage in the neighborhood since the cat population, led by our household, significantly increased. For a few years, our Aurelia trees were decimated every winter by rats with a taste for bark: they’d climb up to where the branches thinned out, then strip the bark to eat, which left branches unstable and dying. I’d come out almost daily to trim them down. By spring, they’d be waist high at best. They grew back, of course, this being the rain forest it is, but then the cycle would just repeat. Essentially, we were growing fresh veggies for the rodent population. This has stopped.
The disconnect between our precious little kitties snuggled up in bed and encouraging us to rub their bellies while they purr and writhe with delight, and pouncing on rats to tear them into pieces and eat their raw bloody organs, is hard to get one’s brane around. It’s not like they’re hungry — they do this shit for fun. And they’re proud of it. Sometimes they show us what they’ve left for us. Harlot has stood outside the kitchen window, rodent in her mouth, calling us to come look.
Murderers. Next cat we get will be named Drone.