M. Giant's
Throwing stuff at the internet to see what sticks

Friday, September 10, 2004  

The [Home] Offfice

Shout-out to my sister, DeBitch the Elder, who is doing the Three-Day Walk for Breast Cancer this weekend. She started this morning and will have walked 60 miles by Sunday night. From Shakopee to St. Paul. To put it in perspective for people on the East Coast, that's like walking more than halfway from Times Square to the Hamptons. If you live in L.A., it's like walking…well, anywhere. You go, Three-Dayers.

* * *

Are you ready for a sad story about a cat? 'Cause if you're not, you might be better off coming back later.

There's not a whole lot going on in my office during the day. This is because my office is in my house, which during the day contains even fewer people than my last office did. Really, it's just me and the cats.

So I spend my days in my home office, a foot and a half from a window that opens out onto our back yard. It's almost like being outside. I can even hear the cicadas sounding their annual alarm: "rrrrrreeeeeeeee-get-out-of-this-soon-to-be-frozen-solid-hellhole-while there's still tiiiieeeeeeeeeeeeem." Not much else happens.

But I think the cats are glad to have me home. Strat especially enjoys his hundred or so treks along the length of my keybo4sfdeeeeeeeeevbbbbbbbbbbbiukard every afternoon. When he's not doing that, he's generally curled up somewhere. One of his favorite spots is on the rocking chair just to the left and slightly behind my work chair.

Yesterday, that's where I had my cell phone. I was recharging the battery, and the cord doesn’t reach all the way to my desk. So it was in the seat of the rocking chair. I just wanted to be sure it was in the same room with me, so that when people call to offer me ridiculously lucrative freelance writing gigs, I hear it.

So, anyway, the phone is charging. I'm working. At some point, I get up from my desk, and them I'm peeing. And then I'm not, and I come back into the office to see Strat curled up, fast asleep, on the rocking chair. The cell phone recharger cord leads from the outlet to somewhere under his ass. That's today's wireless communications devices for you: no sharp corners, and a comforting warmth when you're feeding the battery. Strat had a new best friend.

So here's what I did, and don't even try to tell me you wouldn't do the exact same thing.

I happened to know that my cell phone was on vibrate mode. I turned around, very quietly, and went into the kitchen. I carefully picked the cordless up from off its cradle. Then I sneaked into the hallway, the opposite end from where my office door is. From a safe distance away, I could see Strat sleeping peacefully.

I held my hand over the little beeper grille on the cordless, and, as quietly as I could, I dialed my cell phone number.

And waited.

And waited.

There was no reaction whatsoever.

Somehow the distribution of his weight had pressed the right combination of buttons to switch the phone back over to audible mode, but at the lowest possible volume. So he didn't instantly snap awake and hop up, back arched, hissing and spitting, wondering what the hell was buzzing inside his tummy folds. Instead, somewhere under my cat, my phone was quietly beeping the intro to "Play That Funky Music White Boy" at a level low enough to be completely muffled by Strat's furry bulk. He barely even stirred when I pulled on the cord and prospected the phone out from under his gut.

Isn't that just the saddest cat story you've ever heard? I've never been so disappointed in my life.

This is what passes for office pranks when you work at home. But it's still better than my last two jobs, where there were no office pranks of any kind. I think this working-from-home thing is going to turn out just fine.

The cats might disagree, but they're sleeping through most of it anyway.

* * *

The band I'm in, Myrtle Jean and the Bubs, has pretty much taken the summer off. But we'll be back on Saturday, September 18, at Betsy's Back Porch on 56th and Nicollet in Minneapolis. And we play for free, unless you want to tip us.

Today's best search phrase: "Stylish rolling cats." Just the thing when you need to retrieve your cell phone in a hurry. And stylishly.

posted by M. Giant 7:21 PM 14 comments


Jesus, don't DO that! I thought Strat had died. You are not funny. I mean, you are, but not when you make me think your cat is dead. Curse you, M.Giant!


By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 10, 2004 at 9:22 PM  

I'm with Cori; you scared the shit out of me. Your warning had me deciding whether to read the blog or not. I finally decided to kind of scroll through it, squinting, so I could get the general idea of what was said without seeing anything disturbing. Luckily, I saw enough to know it was safe. Don't EVER DO THAT again!

-- Colleen

By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 11, 2004 at 5:15 AM  

Word! I hit "back" and took a deeeep breath and then hit "forward" and squinted through the whole thing right up to "and don't even try tell me you wouldn't do the exact same thing".

By Blogger Sarcasma, at September 11, 2004 at 8:04 AM  

Seriously. I thought Strat was dead, too. I thought you were going to say that the phone WAS on vibrate but the poor kitty didn't jump up because... oh, god, I don't think I can even write it.

Sometime's you're just mean, M. Giant.


By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 11, 2004 at 2:13 PM  

Oh i was laughing so hard, and even started to break my evvvvvale smile..-"So here's what I did, and don't even try to tell me you wouldn't do the exact same thing." and yes, i would do the same. i hate cats and the sad part is that i grew up with cats...in my family, my name is CK..and you know what that is. We have no slippers around the house now, due to city living but we managed to dump all our cats at my mothers..5 monsters. But working at home now, I can see how the company of the cats would be nice. I miss my cat Stucky, who loves to bring in snakes, lizards and such into the house to show his prize work...which it really is. Here in the city, well, I think Stucky would just sleep..so he is out on the reservation driving my mother nuts.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 11, 2004 at 3:16 PM  

Awww, don't listen to the wimps. I know that if anything bad ever really did happen to YOUR cat, there would be no such blog entry. I had been thinking it was one of two things:

1) Some other cat outside the window actually got scared away by Strat hissing at it from inside on a comfy rocker (pretty damn sad), or

2) The phone vibrated, Strat PEED on it, and thus you have to buy a new phone but it's not really even Strat's fault (sad, also funny, also very much in keeping with the history of the blog).

So, all in all, heh. Awesome. (And also, "Play That Funky Music?" Dude.)


By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 12, 2004 at 9:29 PM  

Office pranks are great, but office pranks played on cats are the best! That makes me want to get an office cat.


By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 13, 2004 at 7:25 AM  

MMMMEEEEAAANNNNN!!!!!!!!!! Mean to your readers, mean to the cat. It serves you right that it didn't work.

Mean! And funny.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 13, 2004 at 7:48 AM  

I will never learn. Don't read velcrometer at work because you will have trouble controlling your laughter while the boss is 2 feet away.

Tears streaming down my face from laughing. Funniest cat story from you since the story about the cats and the sofa bed.

I'll have to keep that story in mind if my cat ever finds herself asleep on my cell phone. Classic!

By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 13, 2004 at 9:22 AM  

What time are you playing on Saturday?

By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 13, 2004 at 11:32 AM  

I'm dyin' over here. If it's any comfort, my extremely obese, extremely lazy, extremely vomity cats wouldn't notice it either.


By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 13, 2004 at 12:59 PM  

I skipped the entry and went straight to the comments, because I couldn't handle that Strat was gone (and he isn't even my cat! Is that considered stalking?) Thankfully, I read the comments and realized it was safe, and hysterical, and that M. Giant is a right bastard.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 13, 2004 at 2:08 PM  

Or, for those on the East Coast, the 3-Day walk is like walking from Newburg, NY to Central Park. Which is the route we took when I did their 3-day in '99.

Congrats to your sister from a 3-day alum.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 13, 2004 at 8:08 PM  

I just wanna know where I can get 'Play that funky music white boy' to download as my ringtone....'

By Anonymous Anonymous, at October 18, 2004 at 9:54 PM  

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