A guy asked to meet me to discuss a project he wants me to work on. He asks if he can bring his girlfriend along. I’m sorry to say but I’m not a fan of
significant others coming to meetings if they’re not involved in the project. No offense, but they don’t add anything to the proceedings and usually are
They get to the restaurant first and he eagerly jumps up to meet me. That’s a little weird. I can tell he’s nervous and that’s also a little weird. I mean,
I’ve met me, sometimes it’s nice but it’s nothing to lose your composure about. We repair to a table and, as luck would have it, our waitress is someone I
know. We exchange pleasantries and I let the others introduce themselves. Mainly because I can’t remember her name but also why should I have to do it?
Because it’s polite? Is that really something people expect from me? I hope not because they’re going to be let down more often than not.
While he’s chatting I notice someone waving at me. It’s a friend of mine and her family. I wave back to them. The girl, whose name I’ve come to find out is
Catherine but she goes by Cat, looks at the people and back to me. It was a weird expression. I’m not sure if she thinks I’m being rude by not giving them my full attention or if she’s amazed I know others I can’t really tell.
When our drinks appear the waitress tells us the round is on the bartender. Amazingly, someone else I know. She’s still giving me the stink eye but I notice
she’s gobbling the free drink. He’s going over his idea and I’m listening. A little. It’s a pretty pedestrian idea. Nothing unique. Not that I write the
most unique things in the world but if I’m going to be pedestrian I’m going to be the one leading the walk.
While sipping our drinks someone pats me on the shoulder. It’s a guy I know. I like this guy. That, in and of itself is odd, so I stand to greet him. We chat for a few, nothing that’s going to derail the meeting, just a friendly how do you do. When I sit down Cat is downright glaring at me.
“What do you know everyone in here?” I turn my head in all directions looking around. I look back at her and say,
“Nope. Not even a quarter.” He starts to nervously chuckle but she is not buying into my little touch of humor.
“You know, my boyfriend is very funny, you know.” That’s just how she said it. The rare but insipid double you know.
To that I nod. I know exactly how funny her boyfriend is. To the beat. And it’s not that damn funny. What he’s written isn’t bad but isn’t interesting.
Pedestrian, as I’ve previously said. Let me put it this way, it’s not good enough to have the potential for her to be around during the project. But, mainly
because foods coming, I don’t say something snide and walk.
“Let me see the pages.” I say to the guy. He’s one of these people who won’t send you the document they want you to read for fear that you’ll send the
masterpiece through the world and take all the credit for it. Trust me, if the people who read my shit read this shit they’d think I’d had a stroke. I take
the script mainly because I didn’t want to interact with Cat any longer.
I pretend to read the script, asking probing questions along the way. I know they were probing because he told me they were. I thought they were just time
wasters. I’m still flipping through the script when the food comes. I gladly toss the script aside and start eating. He starts eating. He and I start
talking. We’re chowing pretty quickly but I notice something.
Cat hasn’t touched the steak she ordered. She’s mainly tossing peas around with her fork. Maybe she’s so pissed that I dared speak to someone when I should
have been paying full attention to her comedy genius she can’t eat. I finish, the other gentleman at the table finishes and Cat paws at her food. Now the
three of us are sitting there silently with two of us staring at Cat. I look at him and he’s totally uncomfortable. He knows something I don’t but, I can
tell, will soon find out.
“What’s the problem?” I ask. She looks up at me, the guy looks down, she takes a deep breath and,
“Well, they call me Cat, you know they call me Cat. And it’s not just because my name is Catherine. It’s because I’m very feline like. I’ve always felt like
a cat.” I wonder if she’s looked into a transfeline change? “I have many cat traits. I even have three nipples.”
“Corroborate?” I say to the guy who, still looking at the table, nods slightly.
“So, see? I’m very cat like.” I stare at her. “So, like cats. I don’t like to use utensils.” I stare at her. She smiles as if this is the sanest thing I’ve
“If I am fully understanding you, you’re a cat.” She nods enthusiastically. “Cat level nipples.” She nods as if I’m getting it. Someone is finally getting
it. “Probably purrs. But, if I’m getting it, you’re saying that, right here in this restaurant, you want to eat like a cat. If I’m still getting this, that
means you want to pick up that steak and go at it with your hands.” She almost slips off the chair nodding so wildly. I look at her boyfriend. I smile. I
look at her. I smile. And wave.
“Go at it.” She reaches for it. “But realize this will be the last time we’re ever seen in public.” Losing visitation of me doesn’t seem to bother her
because she lifts the steak and starts ripping at it as if she’s captured a mouse and isn’t toying with it. I watch this for a few seconds before I hear
“Is there anyth. . .what the fuck?”
I put my hand on her shoulder to get her attention.
“She’s a cat!” She looks at me as if she, a waitress of many years experience, has never seen anything this off the charts. “But don’t worry, you’ll never
have to see her again.” I tell her to give me the check and back away slowly. She gives me the check then backs away unbelieving what she’s witnessing an
I put the check on the table then stand to leave. I shake his hand and say,
And, to this day, I don’t know if I was wishing him luck on his project or having to dine with her one more time.
On my way out I could help but make myself ill by wondering if she also shits in a box.
Which reminds me of this: