“LITTLE MAN ON THE COUCH”…On Black Eyes, Celebrity Stalkers & Hunky Cops

I thought vacations were supposed to make you feel better.

TP: Little Man, you don’t look so good. What happened?

LM: Vacation, doc. That’s what.

TP: Your parents took you on another vacation?

LM: No, no! Once was enough. No, this was just the two of them. Me? I did the Home Alone routine. Alone, that is, except for the schizophrenic alternating pit stops of the “keep it moving, convict” former prison guard/slop server in the mornings and the idyllic “I can almost see the happy birds flying merrily about and hear the Seven Dwarfs whistling while they work” Disney lady in the evenings.

TP: Disney lady? Oh, Snow White.

LM: That’s what they call her. You think I look bad now…imagine if I didn’t have her coming by each day to buck me up and offer a little TLC.

TP: Well, your parents are back now, right?

LM: More or less. Mom walked in the other night with a black eye; Dad came limping in with some foot problem and moaning that he didn’t feel good.

TP: Black eye?

LM: Yeah. Apparently on night number one at some posh paradise in Mexico, mom gets up in the middle of the night to visit the litter box and walks into a wall. At least, that’s the story she’s going with.

TP: Story? You don’t buy it?

LM: Oh, I buy that she walked into a wall, but given her appreciation for the “fresh bouquet and crisp sophistication” of, ahem, several fine bottles of Santa Margherita Pinot Grigio, I question the “middle of the night” bit. I figure she coulda walked into a wall in broad daylight pretty much anytime after high noon.

TP: That’s harsh, Little Man. Spoken like someone holding a bit of a grudge over having been left “alone” (sort of) for a week.

LM: That’s not the worst of it, doc. Good old dad musta had a little mental telepathy going on because, the night before they returned, I got hit with a bad case of Montezuma’s Revenge. Hence, my looking a bit peaked today.

TP: Ouch. Does that also explain your dad’s moaning since coming home?

LM: Partially. But you know, it’s never just one thing with him, doc. Like I said, he limped home on a bad foot…god knows from what. He probably just lay around like a beached whale the whole time he was there. Then it’s “Oh, my stomach feels funny,” followed closely by “There’s some kind of flesh-eating crud on my hand,” all topped off with “maybe I have sun poisoning.”

TP: All while he’s dealing with the aftermath of your Montezuma’s Revenge, I assume. I’d probably be moaning too.

LM: Well, he best snap out of it, doc. Spring’s springing and there’s work to do.

TP: Hmm. And chipmunks to chase!

LM: True but, you know, even I have to admit that I’ve lost a step or two (or three) over the past couple years. You know, it wasn’t that many springs ago that I had two (count ‘em) separate hat trick days…three chippies captured on a single day (two different times, mind you)…all carefully laid out for dad’s admiration. Made the old boy downright giddy! Lately, though, I been going the big cat route…layin’ low, hoping the little racing-striped-rodents will meander too near the high grass so I can pick ‘em off with minimal exertion.

TP: Well, good luck with that. But I’d keep any “hunting” success under your hat unless you want to jeopardize future TLC sessions with that “Snow White” lady. I recall getting a concerned letter from her a couple years back after she read about your chipmunk stalking techniques.  Asked me if I was running some sort of young Hannibal Lecter program here.

LM: Yeh, she’s a bit over the top, that one. Fails to acknowledge that we only have about two hundred of the little Chip & Dales running around the property. Somebody’s gotta cull the herd.

TP: Hmm.

LM: And then there are the oh-so-adorable bunny rabbits. I still can’t figure out how they scored the Easter gig.

TP: Why does that bother you so much?

LM: Well, let’s see. Easter’s about what—Christianity, candy, and colored eggs? Now would you tell me what rabbits have to do with any of that? Still, each year, everybody hops down the bunny trail. Kittens are just as cute and bouncy. And you know I could do a What’s up, doc? every bit as good as that carrot-chompin’ Bugs Dummy character.

TP: Is that what bugs, er sorry, bothers you…that cats don’t have a special holiday or an iconic role model?

LM: Icons? Well, we’ve got my boy, Garfield. He’s pretty cool.  But Sylvester–always getting outwitted by a bird named Tweety. Tweety!!! And then there’s Tom, who’s been chasing that same stupid Jerry mouse for, what, 75 years. Loser. Oh, and let’s not forget “Doctor” Seuss—best he could do was put a cat in a hat, spoutin’ rhymes, along with two very creatively named sidekicks—Thing One and Thing Two! Yeah, I think we’re a little thin on icons. So it goes.

TP:  So it does. Meanwhile, aside from your mom’s black eye, how are things with her?

LM: Well she just had a birthday. Actually, now that I think about it that might explain the black eye. She says birthdays depress her. Probably tried to drown her depression with too much Pinot and BAM! Next stop, the wall.

Either that or she was pining away for her latest heartthrob of a homeless cat—that Colonel kid. You know the one…with the buddy named Elvis? She was really gonzo for The Colonel.

TP: Like she was for Curly a while back? Heard much about him lately?

LM: Oh, he’s still with that celebrity-stalking nutcase Miss Genny.

TP: Celebrity stalking?

LM: You bet. Seems like not a day goes by without a Facebook posting of her big smiling puss standing alongside some celeb athlete. Just saw one from yesterday’s big Opening Day baseball game. Surprised she didn’t throw out the first pitch! Meanwhile, you look close enough at the pix and you can see the athletes are about to summon their handlers to “get this woman away from me.”

TP:  How’s she get the access?

LM: A whole lot of years of practice, worming her way into everyone else’s business. That’s what dad says. Dad told me that this Genny woman actually has Granny (that’s dad’s mom; she’s a sweetheart, but she’s like a hundred or something) convinced that Genny’s her long lost daughter, so now Genny gets invited to all the family stuff.

TP: Wow, she sounds like a piece of work.

LM: Yep.

TP: Speaking of Facebook, I saw you posted some picture of another Baltimore cop getting famous thanks to your mom’s Show Your Soft Side campaign.

LM: Oh, the Hunk Cop? Yeh, he went viral…and the media went nuts. More accurately, made mom nuts with requests for his Soft Side pictures. National TV, even London newspapers…everybody wanted in on “the hunk cop who saves homeless kittens.” Dude’s got himself a nice little gig.

TP: Good PR for Show Your Soft Side and a city police department that could sure use some, I would think.

LM: You would. I would. The hunk cop does. Not so sure about the higher up boys in blue. I think their chain of command is missin’ some links. Seems straightforward to me. Dress that young hunkster up in his best blues and parade him out there with his sweet, defenseless four-legged friends to polish your image. Duh! What did that Hollywood Half Man say? Winner!

TP: OK, Little. We’re about out of time. Any plans this week?

LM: Nah. Just keep working the guilt angle on mom and dad, so they think twice about leaving me again. Keep an eye out for the fox. The usual.

TP: What about the fox?

LM: Well, he lives out back, behind the shed. For the most part, he’s never been a problem, but lately he’s been takin’ liberties. Showin’ up whenever he pleases, sauntering around like he owns the place, leaving his mark, if you know what I mean.

TP: Better get out there and mark your turf, Little.

LM: Not to worry, doc. I can handle that fox. Last time him and me had a stare-off, he blinked. Ran home screaming, “Katy, bar the door!”

TP: Speaking of doors, Little.

LM: Right-o, doc. Next time.

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