Yesterday, I cheated on my hairdresser and held a dying kitten. So now I have PTSD and almost-black hair.

I’d had to cancel on my regularly scheduled hairdresser, because my appointment with her had been during my Two Weeks With 80 Dollars sabbatical. “Yes, I’m on sabbatical. From life. Till I hunker through these two weeks.”

Those of you who aren’t butch know how impossible it is to get another appointment with your hairdresser. “I can get you in in November. Of 2020.”


So I told her, “Ima have to cheat.” You’re not getting me what I want, and I have to find it elsewhere. I was like Jeff Webber when Annie wouldn’t give it up, so he turned to Heather.

Why is it I can remember each plot line from General Hospital, but ask me about pre-algebra. That’s where I stopped when it came to the math. Pre-algebra. And for me, that meant I can now sort of divide. And subtract. -ish.

Anyway, yesterday I went to a fancy spa-like place, where I used to go back when I liked Ned. That is my current demarkation for time: When I Liked Ned/Before I Liked Ned/After I Stopped Liking Ned. Anyway, back when I liked him, this place was half a block from his apartment, and sometimes I’d stay over there, and walk to the spa, and Ned would go let my dogs out and feed them and so on. Then I’d walk back to his house and we’d have lunch or sex or whatever. It was all very convenient.


The place has a fancy fountain in the midst of it, with all the chakras embedded in it. As you do. You can get massages there, and your hair done, and waxing. Once Ned, back when I liked Ned, got me a gift certificate to there, and it included a massage, and afterward, they put you in this very deep cushioned window seat and bring you tea, and I saw my friend Hibiscus Wilson across the street at her office, working. I felt so luxurious while she slaved.

Even their coffee pot is sort of cool.

My old hairdresser no longer works there; I’ve heard it isn’t the most fun place to work from several people. This didn’t stop me from getting my roots covered, because apparently my roots are way more important to me than standing on a table with my UNION sign.

Anyway what happened was the woman who did my hair was very nice and all, but holy god my hair is black. You know. -ish. It’s DARK, is what I mean. Dark. Here I am with m’dark hair under the cool whirly around dryer.

So me and my Jackie O hair left the spa, and man, I used to be downtown every weekend When I Liked Ned, but now I rarely am, although careful readers will note I just WAS downtown last week, for work. Still, I popped into a new little restaurant, I gandered at some shops, and had myself a time until one too many people stopped and said, “I just loved Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves” so I had to go.

When I got home, I had to show ID for Edsel to let me in the door (HOO DIS BLACK DEBBIL), and oh, speaking of Edsel, yesterday was his birthday, so in honor of it, I got him some hushpuppies, and behold a slow-motion film of Eds eating his HPs.

Anyway, what with Edsel’s birthday and my new black hair, which made me acutely aware of the oppression the white man brought to my people, I got under a smallpox blanket and decided to have me a nap.

I was just drifting off when


Isn’t that just the way. Isn’t it just the way of the white man. Except it wasn’t a white man, it was white Lilly, of Chris and Lilly. I took the phone to the bed with me so I could speak with her in a leisurely manner. “I was out shopping, and I was at a roundabout when I saw a kitten lying in the road,” she began.

I shot out of bed.

“Its leg is clearly broken.”

I’d already slipped into m’gold flipflops. When you’re Diana Ross and her big black hair, you gotta have metallic flipflops on hand for any emergency.

“I’m at the emergency vet, and they won’t start treatment on this kitten till someone claims it’s theirs. I just wanted to get it help. I can’t take a kitten.”

I mentally perused Lilly’s life. Two toddlers, a business, a dog, a cat, a husband, chickens. I mean, other than that…

She was calling to see if I knew any rescue groups that would take responsibility. The ones she’d looked up were already full of kittens, which if you ask me is a delightful place to reside, in Already Full of Kitttenville.

“I know a rescue group,” I said. “My readers. For god’s sake, tell the vet to start helping that kitten. I’m on my way.”

Lilly lives out in the country, where I would dearly like to live, and she was at the emergency vet out there, so with a half-hour drive ahead of me, I got on Facebook and asked if anyone could help donate to fix this kitten.

At the first red light, I already had $200.

When I got there, I had $350.


Oh, he was a sweetheart. He lifted his little head for me to pet under his chin. His leg was so, so broken, and he was clearly in pain. They wouldn’t start to help him till I GOT there, and I am sorry to tell you I was a little bit GIVE MY DAUGHTER THE SHOT when I arrived and he was still there. He’d pooped in the (actually really fancy) carrier they’d given him (I still have one of those hard, old-school carriers, and I really want one of the soft ones like he had).

Eventually, Lilly had to go. She apologized over and over for getting me involved, as if saving a kitten weren’t my very favorite way to spend any day at all. She had a guest staying, and her husband had made dinner, and I was all WILL YOU JUST GO. “I hate to leave you here with all this,” she began.

“Dude, I wasn’t doing anything else. I was napping when you called.”

She stared at me pointedly. “Telling a woman with a one-year-old and a four-year-old that you’ve had a nap is the cruelest thing you can do,” she said.

When I checked again, you guys were still donating.

And I don’t know how much time you spend at emergency vets, but I find myself there at least twice a year, and there’s a camaraderie you don’t get many other places. One person’s dogs had gotten into the rat poison. One family has a new puppy who decided to jump out the car on the freeway. One beautiful man of color who I kept eyeing up to no avail (he probably likes blondes and not deep brunettes) had a dog who wouldn’t stop barfing.

But everyone was up in my kitten.

Finally, we got seen, and after much discussion with the tech and the vet, after trying to warm him up because his temperature was almost 10 degrees too low (which meant he couldn’t even have pain medicine), after blood work and an x-ray and an exam, the vet told me the humane thing to do was to put this kitty to sleep.

I mean, my mind was racing. Who did I know with thousands of dollars to throw at a five-week-old kitten who’d gotten himself into trouble? But the vet said even if we put a plate in his broken pelvis, and set his leg, and go about finding all the internal things wrong with him, he’d still probably not live. He’d been away from his mother too long.

“Can I stay with him?” I asked, and they said I could. So I petted him and he made biscuits, and I told him I was sorry life was so cruel to him in just five short weeks, and that I loved him already, and to please come back to this earth as one of my pets one day.

The last thing he said to me was, “What’s with your hair?”

So that’s the tale of one kitty.

35 thoughts on “Black

  1. I missed all this. Oh, what a tragedy. You are good people, June. Did you get enough money, or do you need us to send more ? Please advise.


  2. Oh my, just now reading this. Can’t say anything more because a 5 week old katten showed up at my rental two days ago and is currently being attended to.

    …please come back to this earth as one of my pets one day. [sniff]


  3. Happy birthday, sweet Edsel.

    I’m sad about the poor little kitten. Thank you for your kindness and your faithful readers for jumping in to pay the vet bill.


  4. Well, you got your hair change. Now to decide if you want to change your hair of if you really did like it the way it was.
    I was crying at the poor kitty story. Sorry you had to go through that, but kitty was glad you were there , and so are we. Thank you.


  5. I’m so sorry about the kitten. I was internet-less all weekend (come to think of it, I still am), so am just reading this here at work.

    You and your readers are such good people.


  6. I’m bawling like a baby and I have to leave in 5 mins to start my new job. You are a wonderful person June and everyone who donated needs a new kitten in return.


  7. I am so sad that the kitten couldn’t be cured, but to be loved by you is so special. Poor little cutie-pie.
    Happy Birthday to Edsel!
    Hope you are doing okay. Witnessing a passing is tough.
    Lovely post, lovely June!


  8. June, thank you for being there for that sweet kitty. I’m sure I speak for everyone when I say we’re so grateful.


  9. You gave him the best possible outcome in his situation – your love. He wasn’t alone. You have a great heart for animals, June.


  10. what a day! I am so glad you got to be there for the kitty! Now watch her show up as a puppy that gets along with Edsel!


  11. Oh, that kitty face! Sadness.
    That slo-mo of Eds is a classic. I love how he is already looking forward to the next one while chewing on the first.
    All you need is a pair of violet contacts, Liz. Why did she take you to the dark side?


  12. Thanks for being a kitten whisperer. Poor sweet guy. I am fascinated with the Jetson’s hair dryer. Did Rosie bring you a water while your hair was drying?


  13. Poor sweet kitty. You were so good to help him. Thank you! And all the people who helped monetarily.


  14. Poor little kitty! I’m glad he had someone who loved him with him when he died. He is SO coming back as one of yours.

    And that is one fancy hair dryer! I can’t wait to see your new color when it’s not wet.


  15. “I know a rescue group,” I said. “My readers. For god’s sake, tell the vet to start helping that kitten. I’m on my way.” VERKLEMPT.
    Has the bill been paid in full?

    Liked by 3 people

  16. I missed all of the kitty excitement yesterday so thank for filling me in. Well, everyone in. He was so cute with those little white ear tufts. I wonder if he has siblings near where he was found.


  17. Crying.
    You are the best, June. Thanks to Lilly for rescuing that sweet baby and knowing exactly who to call.
    Thank you for staying with her and giving her all the loves of her too short life.
    You’re an angel under all that Cher hair.


  18. Beautiful. Thank you for staying with our kitten. I just love that you were with him until he slipped away. You’re one of the best humans I know.
    PS What’s with your hair?


  19. Sorry it was such a sad outcome but I’m glad you and Lily were able to intervene and he left this world loved.

    Lovely post, pretty Brunette? June. Is brunette only brown?


  20. Poor, poor kitty! I have had that happen and it seems so unfair to have that brief a life. Bless you for helping him to a humane end. Otherwise, you know we want to see your Diana Ross/ Jackie O/Cher hair!


  21. Lump in throat. Please take care of yourself today because, seriously, this is nothing less than traumatic.


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