Sunday, July 13, 2008

Fluffy, cuddly, heartless carnivore

Published July 13, 2008
St. George Spectrum & Daily News

Today, ladies and gentlemen, I’d like to tell you a story of daring and heroism, a story that will surely earn me a medal of some kind from the Audubon society. I, Sarah Clark, mild mannered newspaper columnist, saved an innocent, defenseless bird from certain death in the jaws of a terrifyingly cruel monster the likes of which no weak-willed individual could ever contend.

My cat, Isis… She’s cute. She’s fluffy. She’s cuddly. She’s a heartless carnivore.

When I saw the poor bird in the clutches of this furry villain, I leaped into action. Isis had dispatched another bird in our basement a week before, and I had been left to plug my ears and sing, “The Circle of Life” at the top of my lungs while she finished the job. I had no desire to repeat the horror of that experience. I lunged at her each time she dropped the shaken, but otherwise unharmed bird, only to have her snatch it back up and zip out of the room each time.

Getting smart about things, I closed off her exits and waited for my chance. Seeing her let go of the bird for a split second, I flew at the elusive cat, clamping my hands around her body while she fought to be free. I tossed her unceremoniously into my bedroom and slammed the door with a lusty, “NOT ON MY WATCH!” then opened a window and ushered the frightened bird outside to tell the tale to his birdie friends. It was when I went to release the beast from her makeshift dungeon that I realized my bedroom door was locked from the inside.

So, I’m standing outside my bedroom door, completely naked. Wait…did I forget to mention I was naked? I had been preparing to shower when the endangered bird caught my eye. (You’re all going to go back and reread the previous paragraphs in a new way, aren’t you? I’m deeply sorry for the visual.)

So, anyway, I’m standing outside my bedroom door, naked as the bird I just rescued, weighing my options. I have two brothers-in-law living nearby who can help me get this door open. I have no clothes. There are two able bodied men out there who know this house inside and out and have probably unlocked this door at least once. I have no clothes.

My situation became quite clear. I needed to leave for work in two hours and all of my clothes (and one very irritated cat) were on the other side of a locked door. Short of calling my husband away from his desk at work, I had no option but to take a good, hard look at the door and figure it out myself (my naked self…in case you had forgotten).

A girly hairpin to the rescue! After examining the knob, skulking nakedly around the house in a fruitless search for a mini screwdriver set, I found a sparkly hairpin I had worn the day before. Thank you, Bad Habit of Leaving Stuff Lying Around. (What a day to actually put my clothes in the hamper, right?) After a few unsuccessful tries, I managed to open the door with the kind of leap of triumph one should never attempt while bereft of clothing.

A blurry ball of fur rocketed out of the doorway in search of her lost prey. I watched her efforts, wondering if she would harbor bad feelings for awhile, but I was gratified to see her turn away from her search to rub against my legs, purring contentedly. Was she merely kissing up in hopes that I would share some of the bird I had no doubt stashed somewhere in the house? Probably. Will I choose to remember it as a sign of affection and gratitude for saving her from herself? Absolutely.

Hey, a medal would be nice, but delusion lasts forever.