Would you like to know one of my favorite things?
Sometimes, at night, I am wide awake. WIDE AWAKE. It’ll be 11:00 and like Bono I’m over there, WIDE AWAKE! WIDE AWAAAAKE! I’m not sleeping.
But I force myself to go to bed anyway, as my alarm goes off at 6:35 a.m.
5:35 if I have the trainer.
Either way, it falls under the category of damn early and if it’s 11:00 and I’m Bono being wide awake, we have trouble. So I force myself to go to bed if it’s that late.
Then I lie there like Iris’s brother.
Eight years ago, right at Christmastime, my coworker TinaDoris and I drove to the shelter to “just see” if there were any kittens available as I was newly separated and my cat Roger had just died and it was Christmas and she felt sorry for me.
Does anyone ever “just see” a kitten?
Well, my kitten didn’t just see me, because who did I pick from the crowded shelter but ol’ half-an-eye Iris, over here, the greatest cat ever invented. I homed right in on her as soon as I walked in.
(I just got up to take a photo of her, like we don’t all know what Iris looks like, and I walked all around this roomy house and kept seeing her doppelganger Lily and thinking, “THERE she—nope. THERE she—nope.” Anyway, you know what Iris looks like.) (How do cats just disappear like that?)
Here. Here’s the last photo I took of her from the other day with old devil-ears Milhous, and don’t remind me I have to iron the festive tablecloth, a tablecloth that belonged to my cat-hating grandmother who is rolling in her grave RN. I’ve had a cold. I hate to mention it. I haven’t felt iron-y.
Anyway. While I was filling out the paperwork to adopt ol’ half-a-good-eye Iris, someone else was adopting her OH MY GOD SO HEALTHY! brother, a black-and-white version of Iris except with THE WIDEST EYES EVER. It’s like he got ALL the eyes. He was the wide-eye-ist cat you ever saw, and trust me he saw you because HELLO EYES.
That was a total climb-the-Christmas-tree cat, I could tell.
I know that somewhere in the annals of history I have a photo of Iris way up in my white fake Xmas tree and I tried to find it but instead found this photo of me 12 years ago buying my last natural tree in TinyTown. That was the year I discovered I am allergic to North Carolina trees. It’s beginning to look a lot like chest rash.
Oh my god, anyway.
So some nights I’m not tired at 11:00 and then I lie there like Iris’s brother, with the wide eyes.
Then I finally sort of fall into a fitful sleep, and keep POPPING awake all night and have to FORCE myself to fall into another fitful sleep with
go my eyeballs.
And then? About 5 a.m.? I fall into the most beautiful, deep, restful sleep imaginable. So deep it is; so resty. Oh, how I sleep. And
BLAHHHHHHHHHHH! goes my alarm one hour and 35 minutes later.
Then it’s like getting quicksand off my chest to get up.
And that is what I face today, and it puts me in a sparkling mood, is what it does.
And that brings me to today’s mood: sparkling. And wide-eyed, like Iris’s brother.
I can’t remember what his name was. It might have been Candy Cane. See above re close to Christmas. Iris’s shelter name was Sugarplum, and she will roll her half eye at you if you call her that.
Milhous’s shelter name was Potato Cake. No, I don’t know who names the pets there but they should give that job to me.
Edsel’s name was Montana. Very Brokeback Mountain.
Lily’s was Lily. I stuck with it because I already had Iris and I liked the congruity.
I just got up to get more much-needed strong black woman coffee and there was Iris, nee Sugarplum, just sitting in the middle of the hall rug like she wasn’t 100% disappeared 10 minutes ago. Where do cats go?
Anyway, in case you are worried sick and your family keeps calling for updates, I went to work with my cold yesterday and felt terrible, so I lasted till about 2:30. Then I went home and lay listlessly on the couch till 11:00, when I felt WIDE AWAKE, and today I feel…less bad. I am allegedly doing festive holiday things tonight and have a festive holiday party to attend tomorrow night and —
As I wrote you that, I just remembered that last weekend I lay prone with my cold and ordered a fun gift for my party hostess tomorrow and you know how Amazon is. Usually you just THINK of a thing and it’s at your door. But I’ve been so consumed with cold (did you know I had a cold?) that I’d sort of forgotten I’d placed the order till I mentioned the party to you just now, so I went to Amazon all steaming. WHERE IS MY ORDER?
According to the internet gurus at Amazon? “Delivered.”
Delivered? What the…
I clicked further.
“Delivered today at 7:18 a.m.”
Really? I was up at 7:18 a.m., having gotten the quicksand off my chest and seething at the injustice of trying to sleep postmenopause. Why didn’t Edsel and I hear it? He might have been out back on his constitutional. I toddled to the front porch, and you know what?
My item was delivered.
God, Amazon is amazing. I know I’m supposed to hate them like I’m supposed to hate Louis CK but I don’t hate either and I’m sorry. I don’t.
All right. I’d better get in the shower and go the whole day pretending I slept well. Please think encouraging thoughts about me being able to attend my festive holiday events this weekend. I already missed White Christmas at my old theater because I was unwell. Did I mention I’ve been unwell?