I’m not very good at social media. I’m shy, afraid of criticism, apolitical, a terrible photographer and bad at spelling. I have trouble throwing out a spontaneous bon mot, and my life is chronically, uninstagramably ordinary. Most crippling of all, I don’t have a cute cat.
I mean, I HAVE a cat. I have invested in a cat. Three years ago, I got a pair of kittens under the delusion that my children would love and appreciate me forever. And besides their adorable, big-eyed gratitude, I’d have cats to bring me social popularity and acceptance. I’m pretty sure that was in the paperwork.
But no, now I just have two kids arguing that it’s not their turn to clean the litter box and two cats shedding on my clothes, snagging the upholstery and barfing on the rugs. At least I think it’s the cats doing it, but I’m not positive, since I never see them. They leave their biological evidence regularly, but through some strange, cruel twist, they are both reclusive and un-photogenic. Other people can post cats in costumes, adorably falling off things, conducting heartwarming intra-species love affairs…. Mine scrabble in panic out of the room when I enter. I’m more likely to get a photo of Big Foot in a bow tie than these guys. They’re just two sets of baleful, reflective eyes under the bed.
I’m a nice person. I’ve had cats before. Those cats could tolerate me. What has gone wrong with these ones? They act as though they have PTSD from living with a family of sadistic toddlers, when I know for a fact that they spent their pre-me lives a hippy kitten commune.
What to do? Hire some cheap floozy of a cat to pose for photos? Get a chinchilla? A dog in a rabbit costume?
For now, I will content myself with developing a dark, brooding series photographs called “FU from under the bed.”