Monday, November 16, 1998

34 and More

Monday: Birfday. Highlight? Woke up and my dear friend had dropped off a card and little thing she had written for me- top ten reasons to celebrate my birthday. In ten statements she was able to capture the essence of what has been the best friendship I have ever known. It made me laugh, it made me cry. And you know? It made me appreciate that once in a while a friendship comes along that makes life seem so... worthwhile? Also got a couple nice emails from family. Maybe just maybe I've reached somebody once or twice...

Tuesday: Meeting in Burnsville with a former sort of associate who wants me to sell insurance. My biggest suspicion? He says he knows I'm a people person. HAR HAR! Prepaid legal. Not a bad concept but how does it coincide with my distaste of everything the legal profession stands for today? I once told someone I used to supervise who told me she was thinking of applying to law school that if she did, I would never speak to her again. The only thing better than a lawyer? A dead lawyer...

Wednesday: Shopping with my friend and I was so out of it that I came home and cried. I don't get to see her much and when I finally do I act like a cadaver.... SNIFF.... My problem- more systemic than muscular. But no time to think... it's off to Uptown to have my birthday lunch with Al, Mary and Dave Higel. Chicken wild rice soup. Damn tasty. It's always good catching up with our favorite record store owner and GM (and getting to know Dave too- although he didn't conform to our group's order of Sprite and the soup of the day. He just HAD to have the Calzone). Dinner with Spunky, whose input and insight remains ever so important. Chinese chow fun!

Thursday: Brought Max in to get his teeth cleaned. They told me he had a moderate case of Gingivitis so I figured it was probably prudent to spend the $200 it would take for the procedure. Can I say I was more than a little worried about him having to be anesthetized? I was told to cut off his food at 7 p.m. the night before and to have him in at 7 a.m. Max is used to eating at night so even though I put out his food extra early he was disciplined to save it until later on only to find that it was gone later on. So when I overslept and woke up at 7:10 a.m. and bolted out of bed he expected to be fed. I instead stuffed him in his traveling cage. When we got to the vet (7:20!) he was not the usual nervous he is when visiting his least favorite place. Nope. He was pissed. Howling his displeasure at me. And as I watched the intern take him away I seriously wondered if this was the way it was all going to end. The guy who has sat with me through all that has transpired for the past seven years. My partner.

I went home and as I was doing some work I kept looking up expecting to see his nonchalant little face looking around the corner. As I lay down to watch some TV I kept expecting him to jump up on my chest. He wasn't there... I go in at 6 p.m. to pick him back up. He's still more than a little groggy. We drive home in silence (which has never happened before- he's always so willing to let me know his distaste of riding in the car). We get inside and I let him out of his cage and he stumbles out, barely able to walk. (Acting I'm sure, quite like when I get too much whiskey inside of me.) He of course heads straight towards his supper dish. I don't want to feed him knowing his dazed drugged state but I do have to give him his first anti-biotic pill, so I stuff the pill inside some canned food and he snarfs it all right down more out of habit than need. He proceeds to head toward his litter box (which is downstairs). I don't want him trying to maneuver stairs so I carry him down. He does his business. I carry him back up. He goes and lies underneath my bed for a bit and gets up to head back to the basement. I carry him down again where he does some more business. I bring him up, shut the basement door behind me as I go to my office. I hear him wandering about and then notice a strong odor in the air. He has tried to go down but couldn't so he found the softest spot he could (his flannel blanket) and did his business again. This ever so proud cat, who is immaculately groomed now doesn't care about the overwhelming urine stench coming from him or the fact he took a dump on the place he likes to lie. My heart is heavy. Then he throws up dinner.

Friday: Have lunch at Sawatee's with a long lost much missed friend from the past that I shouldn't lost contact with. It was great catching up with her (she's a recent new mother for the first time! UDO!) Max's test results come in. Negative on both leukemia and feline AIDS. They don't know however, why his white blood cell count is so low. But the news is good and we celebrate by trying to get him to swallow his anti-biotic pill. Turns into a scene straight out of a Stooges movie...

That evening I head over to our favorite Nagel Woman's (quien mas sabe) house for a post election party with all of our favorite election people. I'm on the fringe of conversations as I most often am. I'm feeling sad that I can't talk to my host because she is too busy hosting. But after everyone else leaves we finally do get a chance to talk. What she tells me helps me see how different we are, how different our situations are and yet? I relate to everything she tells me. Every time we talk I come away learning more about her and even more about me. That's quite rare indeed. I look in her eyes (she obviously was very tired) and I must admit I've never seen anything in my life so beautiful and rare. Bliss and sadness. Holding on for dear life while learning to drive the line between safely and carefully.

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