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As Relaxed as a Strand of Overcooked Spaghetti

Candy's Column

As Relaxed as a Strand of Overcooked Spaghetti

They say crying is good for you because it releases pent-up stress hormones.  In which case, I must be as relaxed as a strand of overcooked spaghetti after grieving the loss of Matty and hanging out on pet adoption sites the past few days.

Seriously, ladies (and select men):  If you ever want to test your “waterproof” mascara, just take a gander at  Oh, the cute little faces!  Oh, all the animals you can’t save!  Oh, the tears!  Oh, the — hey, is that my mascara I taste?  GROSS.

We have been a sad lot around here, for sure.  It may sound ridiculous to people who don’t have pets — It’s just a cat!  Have a beer and get over it already, Kirby! (For the record, I did NOT appreciate you saying that, Grandma) — but Mr. Candy and I have been hit hard by his death.  Heck, those cats were our only babies for eight years before our human baby came along.  They are featured on all of our family holiday cards.  They have their own embroidered Christmas stockings.  They have first dibs on our bed.  And, yes, they have powers of attorney should anything happen to us.*

It isn’t until a pet is gone that you realize how strong his presence was around the house.  I expect to see Matty at every turn.  When I’m serving breakfast (I can’t bear to put away his bowl just yet).  Or when I glance over at his favorite spot on top of the leather chair.  Or outside of Skye’s room, where he waited protectively EVERY SINGLE NIGHT, after I put her to sleep.  Or lounging on his back, legs outstretched, at the top of the stairs.

I have to be honest, though:  I don’t miss the poop.  Or the daily concern that Skye would find it first and think, “Woo-hoo!  PLAY-DOH!”  Or worse, “CHOCOLATE!”

Perhaps the most heartbreaking part of losing Matty is watching Marcy react to his absence.  She no longer sleeps in our room — which is where Matty died — at night.  The few times she has stepped foot (paw?) into the room, she makes a point of walking around the spot where he passed away.  I also found her occupying Matty’s favorite spot on the leather chair yesterday; something she rarely did before he left us.

Not sure if she is honoring her brother’s memory or celebrating the fact that she can FINALLY FREAKIN’ SIT THERE without Matty bumping her from his throne.  I think we all know the answer, but let’s indulge my sentimental side and say it’s the former, okay?

If you’re wondering what that beautiful background is in the photograph, it is a new box spring the mattress place could NOT fit up our stairwell.  So, until we can find a mover to hoist it over the balcony outside of our bedroom, we are stuck looking at the humongous eyesore propped against our living room wall — not to mention having to continue sleeping on our old, sagging box spring that we were so happy to be kicking to the curb.

Yeah.  It’s been one of those weeks.  Stress hormones, be gone!

*Remember, Marcy: Share the inheritance with Skye.  Do NOT squander all of it on Meow Mix.  And don’t be too quick to pull that plug!

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Candy Kirby is the founder of The Laughing Stork and a professional fun-maker who will never stop chasing her lifelong dream: to find the Pomeranian or porn star after whom her parents must have named her. A humor columnist for Disney, Nickelodeon, Scary Mommy, Reductress and Redbook, she also used to be a staff writer for the soap opera, The Bold and the Beautiful, where she penned many scripts featuring prolonged heated stares and countless “Who’s the Daddy?” story lines. Candy lives in Los Angeles with her husband, two young kids and three rescue Persian cats, the latter of whom are the real brains behind this operation (so send all complaints to them).

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