Get this, I've been banned from the shop like a common criminal because — and I quote my husband here — I "can't be trusted."
More than 22 years together and it comes to this: He's putting a kitty cat between us as if it's a matter of principle.
We'd been hearing a feral cat outside the house off and on for a week or so and started feeding it in the shop last weekend. We've been hoping to attract a shop kitty for mouse control purposes, so this was good news.
It showed up to eat one night this week while John was working in the shop. Not wanting to spook it away because, y'know, those feral cats can be skittish, John talked to it as they both did their thing. When the eating noises slowed from frenzied to determined, John poked his head around the forklift to get a look at the hungry critter before it darted away to hiding.
At the first glimpse of John, the cat stopped eating, meowed and ran over to him to rub itself on his legs, purring in a not-so-feral-like manner.
It was that very act of feline friendliness that got me kicked out of the shop.
John's logic is that the cat rubbing on my leg and purring would cause some kind of covalent bonding — to which he claims to be impervious — however, this bond would cause the cat and I to fall in love, then the cat would want to come to the house and I would let it in — which is exactly what John doesn't want. A house cat.
Fine, sure, I get it, he doesn't want a house cat, hates litter boxes, has a deep and abiding aversion to finding half-eaten mice while on a midnight bathroom run. But I don't know how he concluded that I'm the one whose defenses against feline charms are so weak that I'll be the one who lets the cat into the house.
The day after he met the new critter, I referred to it as "your cat" to John, he insisted that it isn't his cat, it's my cat. What?!
"He's not my cat," I said. "Remember, I'm the one not allowed to go up to the shop to meet him or even look at from the doorway."
"Well," he said, quickly amending his claim, "it's the shop's cat. But it's not my cat. I don't like cats. They're obnoxious and messy and they look clean, but they're really covered in cat spit. In fact, I hate cats. ... But ... I'm thinking of calling him Cheeto."
"I know he's not orange," John explained, "but I was thinking about other names and about how he's probably going to be with us for a long time and 'Cheeto' just popped into my head and I thought it sounded good. Fun."
I'm not allowed to go into the shop, so I can't verify the information, but it's my understanding that our new friend Cheeto has a lovely new soft bed, set near his food so he doesn't have to waste energy getting from his free meal to his cat nap. John so obviously hates this critter.
Now all this begs the question: Who's going to let the cat into our house first?
(I'm willing to take bets at http://viewnorth40.wordpress.com.)