Tag Archives: embarrassing

I thought people were supposed to LOOK like their pets.

8 Sep

Image Source: http://www.hilarioustime.com/images/04/Well-butter-my-butt-funny-cat-with-bread-on-its-head.jpg

Let’s start with a list:

  1. Gratitude.
  2. Condolences.
  3. Feelings.
  4. Shipments.

That’s pretty much the exhaustive list of things I believe should be expressed.

However, now that I’m the proud owner of a cat rescued from Methatopia, West Virginia, I’ve learned there’s something else that requires expressing: Anal Glands.

That’s right. I didn’t even know that was a THING.

Image Source: http://funnyfilez.funnypart.com/pictures/FunnyPart-com-r2d2_cat_home.jpgUntil one night when I was kicked back in my chair, reading, and Miss Moneypenny emerged from her litterbox. She strode confidently over to me, then sat down and proceeded to pull herself around on the floor using only her front legs, moving in an oddly fluid way, as if she were channeling the ghost of R2D2.

Obviously I had to burn and replace the carpet. But before doing so, I googled, “Cat Dragging Butt.” And because Google knows me, instead of pulling up helpful medical references, the first results displayed animated gifs. Which, admittedly, slayed me. But did nothing to help me diagnose Miss Moneypenny’s malady.

My next query was more fruitful, and was confirmed by my sister, who ALSO just adopted a vocal cat with butt issues. Apparently we’re scat magnets. “Sounds like her anal glands need expressing,” Alicia wrote. She then sent me a how-to video. I gagged and called the vet.

When I arrived at the vet, it was after working hours, so the waiting room was full. I approached the receptionist and tried to be discreet. “I’m hoping there’s a vet tech who can look at my cat,” I said.

Before I could get any further, she said, “What’s her name? Your cat?”

Me: Miss Moneypenny.

Receptionist, loudly: Oh yeah – she’s the one who needs her ANAL GLANDS EXPRESSED, right?

Me, softly: I’m not sure. She’s just started scooting around on the floor a bit.

Receptionist, loudly: It sounds like her ANAL GLANDS. Let me see if I can get a Vet Tech out here to EXPRESS HER ANAL GLANDS.

Me: Um, thanks.

I took a seat, sheltering Miss Moneypenny from the prying eyes of other patients who all seemed to be there for non-embarrassing routine procedures, like teeth cleanings and rabies vaccinations.

A vet tech appeared shortly, and asked a few more questions. The unwitting audience of other pet owners started making the sign of the cross on their chests, praying that they never had to bring their animals in for ANAL GLAND EXPRESSION.

Meanwhile, Miss Moneypenny cowered in her vented duffel bag carrier, growling. I could hardly blame her, especially when the vet tech grabbed the duffel and said to me, “You wait here. She’s going to be very mad at us. Better that you’re not in there…”

The rest of the appointment was uneventful – for me. I don’t even want to know what happened in the back. From the howls, I think it’s safe to surmise that Miss Moneypenny was not a model patient.

Later that night, I chatted my sister.

Me: Good job with the long-distance diagnosis of my cat’s butt.

Alicia: Was it her glands?

Me: Yes. They said it’s common in dogs, but pretty rare in cats. It’s weird that we BOTH just adopted cats with this issue.

Alicia: Hmmmm…

Me: Unless this is cats’ version of a gluten allergy? Maybe it’s suddenly trendy?

Alicia: I guess we’re just early adopters.

Me: We should get out ahead of this wave and write a cookbook. PAYDAY!

Image Source: http://payload.cargocollective.com/1/3/125736/2175893/THE%20CAT%20COOK%20BOOK-1.jpgCOMING SOON: You’ll be able to purchase our Cookbook for Kitties, called, “EXPRESS YOURSELF: Healthy Meals for Happy Cats.” 

<–Not to be confused with THIS book, which seems to advocate COOKING cats. I guess we’re not the only trend-setters.

I only parlez-français when it comes to champignons.

2 Nov

Our Learning Services team supports our offices around the world. I tell you this to explain why I was dialing Paris at 10am.

I thought I was calling someone who expected my call. We had a meeting invitation on our calendars, and I’d checked our corporate directory to ensure I had her direct line. But somehow, between trying to remember the international exchange code and entering her number, I managed to enter the general office number.

So I was surprised when she answered with a flowing sentence of French, beginning with the only word I understood: Bonjour. I responded with a Bonjour of my own, before switching to English in a “let’s drop this joke” kind of tone and said, “Hey! It’s Alison. Are you ready for me?”

Silence on the other end. Then, “Bonjour? Repetez, s’il vous plait…”

Which is when I realized it was NOT the person I was trying to reach. So, digging deep into my dusty mental reference drawer, I called upon the French I’d learned eight years ago when I briefly lived in France.

I strung together a sentence which – roughly translated – was intended to communicate the following: “Hi. My apologies. I speak little French. I am American. I am searching for Perrine. Is she there?”

The woman on the other end exclaimed like she finally understood me; then I was put on hold. After a brief delay, another woman answered. “Bonjour?”

Cautiously, I answered. “Perrine?”

Apparently not, because her response was a long sentence which left me stumped.

In my defense, even at the height of my French comprehension, I heavily relied on visual cues. The phone was always my enemy. Taking a deep breath, I had flashbacks of two other French phone calls from my past.

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How quickly we forget…

26 Sep

I was in LA all last week for work, turning in 12+ hour days while battling a cold. This week I’m off to NYC for more of the same, so I took it easy over the weekend. By which I mean: I spent all of Sunday rolling around on my couch, reading and napping, which is completely out of character for me.

Before I tell you this next part, I would like to reiterate: I was VERY tired. And I was alternating between a hard copy of Bon Appetit magazine and an iPad version of Vanity Fair, so what happened next is somewhat understandable.

Instead of turning the page of the magazine, I took my finger and slid it on the article, trying to get it to move up the page. Except, it turns out that only works on an iPad. Not on a real magazine.

As soon as I did it, I was a bit sheepish because it called to mind more than one dumb blonde technology joke: Using white out on a computer screen; Asking someone to fax over a blank piece of paper.

I am convinced: technology is making me dumber.

At least I didn’t scream “GO!”

11 Aug

Because during the day, an alligator avoids eating children.

The other night I whipped into Safeway on my walk home from work to pick up a few items for dinner. On my way in the door, I passed Melissa, the woman who bought my old condo. (I still live in the neighborhood so we shop at the same store and bump into each other occasionally.)

Naturally, I tapped the glass, waved and said, “Hey stranger!” as we passed each other.

She caught my eye, smiled, and — as soon as the door held still — said, “Hey back! It’s been forever! How are you doing?”

And as she said that, my mind finished its computer-like body scan of her and realized she was NOT, in fact, the woman living in my old place. She was a complete stranger. Albeit one who bore an uncanny resemblance to Melissa and was willing to humor me, but a stranger nonetheless.

Embarrassment must’ve registered on my face, because just as I started to say, “Oh my gosh! I’m so sorry! You look like someone I know –” she broke out in a huge grin, saying, “Wow! I totally thought you were someone I used to work with who lives in the neighborhood!”

And then, with the best-timed “jinx” ever, we both shrugged and said, “Small world!” at the exact same time. Had we met under different circumstances, I’m sure we would’ve been BFFs.

It’s always awkward when you mistake a stranger for someone you know — I think it harkens back to childhood, when (without looking up) you accidentally took a stranger’s hand, thinking it belonged to your mother. This instance (with the Melissa-look-alike) was about the best case scenario because we BOTH were confused.

Now let’s jump into the Way-Back Machine to check out the other end of the spectrum.

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You can tell we’re related. And not just because of our humor.

11 Mar

In the middle of my otherwise stressful work day, I checked my personal email and found this gem waiting for me from my sister, who shares my sense of humor:

Last night I had my spinning class and was super gassy. I’ve never done this before, but last night had to go to the bathroom to let off a little pressure because I was getting crampy.  There were 2 girls in there, probably middle-school age.  I go whipping in (trying to hurry so I can get back to class), go in a stall, and though I tried to be quiet, end up ripping some of the largest, squealiest farts.  Then the girls started giggling.  I peed and then had some more gas, which was just as obnoxious.  They whispered and giggled some more.  I went out to wash my hands and figured I had to own it.  I said, “I know.  It’s nasty.  But I figure better here than in class.”  They couldn’t even look at me.

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