Our cat has seasonal allergies.
I felt sorry for him until an hour-and pint-of-human-blood-ago.
Mind you, we’ve spent hundreds of dollars on vet bills, hundreds more on specialty foods for this poor, itchy bastard. He gets hives and eats his fur off and it’s so pitiful I do stupid things.
Like trying to pill him with Benadryl to alleviate his symptoms.
So. According to the vet instructions, administering Benadryl to a cat requires four easy steps.
Mind you, these are steps the vet never seems to take because I don’t know about you, but my animals act like mesmerized serpents when our vet has them on the table. They will be hissing, pissing nightmares until the crate is opened and they find themselves on the table, under the lights. From that moment forward, at least until I get them to the car, they are gorgeous, docile little loves who stand perfectly still and never hiss or scratch.
Of course, I know they’re doing it to make a complete liar out of me, but the vet doesn’t know that.
For some reason, she can perform every up-close-and-personal maneuver from sticking a thermometer in their ass to cutting their toenails and they remain perfectly calm.
I bend over to put food in their bowl and they act like I have a history of lighting them on fire if they get too close. They scatter and reconvene only when I’ve left the general vicinity. After they gorge themselves on $20-a-bowl food and throw up in 20 different spots in the house, they allow me kitty attention and actual physical contact.
Hell yes I’m jealous.
I’ve never done anything but adore these creatures and they love the lady who shoves things in their ass more than they do me.
(It just occurred to me that my cats may be on the fetishist side. Dammit, I’ll buy specialty cat food, but I draw the line at latex cat suits for real cats.)
Back to the four easy steps.
“First, cover the pill with an oily of fatty base because Benadry tastes awful and we want it to slide down the throat easily.”
“Second, wrap the kitty in a towel so it feels safe.”
Third, part the jaw at the joint with one hand, shove the pill down their throat with the index finger of the other hand.
For real? Ima trust ya’ on this one, cause’ you’re a doc and all.
“Finally, pinch the jaw shut and rub the throat until they swallow. Viola`! Kitty feels better and everyone is happy until a $120.00 vet appointment that includes steroid shots and more specialty food can be arranged.”
Consider this a warning, or perhaps, your Amazon review-esqe assessment of the aforementioned vet instructions for “easily” pilling a cat.
I’d give it one star, but I haven’t got the strength to hit the button anymore because I’m exhausted from chasing the cat around the house, so I can wrap him in a towel to make him feel safe.
The instructions should probably include, “have twelve assistants and a giant net available” and plainly state that the part where she told me to “coat the pill in something oily or fatty” should definitely not be done first if it takes you 45 minutes to catch the fucking cat to wrap it in a towel so it feels safe after you’ve chased it around the house for 45 minutes.
Because after someone takes the time to catch an unwilling cat and wrap it in a towel, I can tell you from very recent personal experience, the foul cruelty of actually getting to that point and finding the Benadryl completely dissolved into an oily little puddle will make a sane person consider flinging themselves off a bridge. Cat be damned.
It should also note that catching a cat who’s been caught once and is already freaked the fuck out because it thinks you’re trying to make a burrito out of it is at best, a life altering experience worthy of validation.
Clearly step one should be laying out the fatty substance and the Benadryl in close proximity of one another. Refrain from mixing the two until the cat is caught and wrapped unless you hate your whole life and enjoy crushing disappointment.
Also, you will never actually get the cat wrapped in the towel twice, but you’ll need it to staunch the multiple wounds you’ll no doubt obtain in the quest for the freaked-out cat.
So let’s forget any pretense here.
My first (second attempt) grab was a “three-footer,” meaning, I only got three of his feet under control and sustained a facial wound worthy of a Quentin Tarantino movie as the fur-rocket twisted away from the screams and shot towards the bedroom.
Blinded by my flapping eyelid, I slipped on a pile of $20 vomit chasing the bastard down the hallway. At this point it was all-out war. I was determined to make that fucker feel safe. I blindly clawed my way towards the smell of cat piss while the cat liberally sprayed everything in my bedroom worth more than twenty-five bucks and darted under the bed.
(Side note: It’s a little-known fact that cats can sense when something is expensive or irreplaceable. It actually intensifies the smell of their urine and improves their aim. Swear to God.)
When I finally got the vile animal backed into a corner under the bed I realized I’d left the towel in the living room with enough of my DNA on it to clone a species, but I had a lone Benadryl in my pocket because my initial intention was to lovingly wrap him in a towel, place him on the kitchen counter, remove the Benadryl from my pocket while easily holding him in place in his happy fucking towel, wiping the goddamn Benadry in butter, and shoving it down his ungrateful throat.
But things didn’t work out like that.
I’m not gonna lie. I just grabbed him and laid on top of him, thinking in my altered state of pain and near-exsanguination that I didn’t give a shit if he felt safe, I was going to feel a whole lot more fucking safe with that feral bastard pinned underneath me and the goddamn bed.
I grabbed his jaw and tried to gently pry from the joint with my thumb while clutching the intact Benadrly like the fucking Arc of the Covenant in the other hand.
Here’s another thing the instructions should include.
Cats have jaw teeth that can shred titanium.
It took me a second to realize the growls had become gurgles, because while gently parting his jaws, I had inflicted an arterial thumb bleed on myself that was shooting directly into his windpipe.
Again, I blame the adrenaline and fact that I was huffing hairballs from underneath a bed that hadn’t been vacuumed since Clinton was president on thinking how wonderful it was to have an oily substance provided to me by the Gods so I could shove this pill down the esophagus of this writhing, shitting, demon from hell with ease and efficiency.
When the deed was finally done and I managed to deflect parting blows from the kitty who clearly did not feel safe anymore, I slid myself out from under the bed in the trail of blood and hair I left going in, stood to walk to the bathroom to attend to my wounds, and stepped in a pile of foamy pink vomit that looked suspiciously like the Benadryl I had mere seconds earlier, fought for my life over.
I’m writing this from the bridge.
Wendy Parker, September 29, 2019
The weather wasn't the best, but that didn't stop thousands of people from lining the streets in support of the 2019 Mother's Day Make-A-Wish convoy held in Lancaster Pennsylvania. It was truly an honor to be one of 545 vehicles making up this year's convoy. Although rain levels were high, camaraderie was higher and the looks on the kids faces made it all worth while. It really warms our hearts to see any group of people come together for the greater good and this was definitely one of those experiences.
We still haven't heard the final dollar amount raised yet, but RoadPro's healthy donation of 30k was great start. There were plenty carnival style games, food vendors and a host of hundreds of volunteers making it all happen. 100% of the food and game proceeds raised will be added to the overall total and used to really make a wish come true for a group of children suffering from critical illnesses most of us couldn't even imagine. To find out more about the Make-A-Wish Foundation or to get involved, check out the following link: https://wish.org/
Was that a nuclear event, or a hot flash?
Our bed has a smoldering pile of blankets in the middle of it. It serves as a burn barrier for the innocents who don’t teeter on the verge of spontaneous combustion three times a night. Namely, George and the cat.
They’ve grown used to the volcanic flashes of heat that somehow come out of my body without vaporizing everything in the general vicinity. When I leap out of bed and shed my clothes, it’s no longer foreplay, its survival.
Now instead of being alarmed, George just mumbles, “Stop, drop and roll…” and goes back to sleep.
Admittedly, he was concerned the first few times I shot straight out of a peaceful sleep into whirling fire-tornado status gasping, “Ohmygod how hot is it in here?!”
He was sweet enough to suggest a fan, but hot flashes feel personally challenged by fans. The minute a lurking hot flash hears a box fan, it’s on like Donkey Kong. (That’s if Donkey Kong contains a version of the fifth circle of hell, of course.)
My main concern with the fan was that a burning ember of my newly-acquired facial hair might blow over the smoldering pile of blankets and set the house on fire. Because menopause isn’t fun unless you can grow a full mustache and have hot flashes that achieve white-hot temps.
The struggle is real y’all, but after 24 years of marriage, we continue to adapt to change.
Happy anniversary to my better, and cooler, half. Here’s to another 24 with the only person I could ever imagine spending it with.
Less than six percent of the truck driving workforce is female. That's not a huge number, but I'm willing to bet a large number of those females have had to deal with a bra-fitting at least once in their lives. That's right fellas. This one's for the ladies, unless, of course, you're a fella who wears a bra, and if that's the case, we don't judge here. The angst of wrestling back-fat into scratchy, unfamiliar bras is certainly not gender-specific.
We developed a yearly tradition of buying new shoes and underwear in the late winter months a long time ago. I guess it started during the brief moment in time when we were sane, and didn't own our own business. Back when we had little kids and got income tax returns, and ran down to the K-Mart with everyone else in Fairborn to buy new underwear, bikes for the kids, and new barbecue grills. Tax time was like Christmas, part two.
The Fairborn K-Mart is long gone, we haven't had kids with bicycles in our home in years, and tax time with a small business is every single day, but for some reason, we adhere to the tradition of dragging our winter-fattened bodies out into the light of early Spring to buy new underwear and shoes.
George learned a long time ago that bra shopping with me is not a pleasant experience, and that's putting it mildly. He also doesn't want to be the weirdo guy hanging around the ladies underwear dressing room at Elder-Beerman, which happens to be one of the only places in town you can buy a regular bra made from cotton in sizes larger than “what are boobs?” (I'm just going to come right out and say it, it's the old lady bra place. There. Live with it, because it's the truth.)
So George dumps me at the door of Elder Beerman and speeds off like a getaway driver in a bank heist, and I stroll in, on a Monday morning, ready to find an old-lady bra made of cotton, in my size, which may or may not be, “boobs for days, and not in a good way.”
Department stores as a whole aren't especially overrun with customers these days, so magnify that by a million and you get the desolation and alone-ness of the Fairborn, Ohio, Elder Beerman on a Monday morning. I wandered around for a few minutes, getting used to the idea of being a solitary customer. Just as I found myself loosening up, sorting through the bra rack and grooving to a muzak version of “Beast of Burden,” the bra lady materialized out of thin air behind me and screamed,“May I help you?”
“Holy shit, lady, where did you come from? Who trains you people, the Viet Cong? You can help me clean the pee off myself, you scary little bra-crypt keeper, don't sneak up on me again, and stop yelling.” (Okay, she didn't really scream, and I didn't really say that, but she scared the beejeebies out of me, and I thought it.)
What I did tell her is that I was looking for a cotton bra in my size, which may or may not be, “inner-tube of a tractor tire.” She took one look at me and basically told me I was a filthy liar and wearing the wrong size bra, and had probably committed gravely horrific transgressions against my breasts for my entire life by not having a professional bra fitting.
Within minutes, I was in a dressing room, stripped to the waist, being measured in ways I thought were reserved only for diamond cutters and atomic physicists. I waited, while the maven of bras zipped out with schematics of my upper half I never knew existed, and once again, silently materialized, holding a bra that looked like it belonged on the front of a Volkswagen Beetle.
I considered protesting, but realized it was futile. I slipped the giant apparatus on, hoping to make a point and prove that I knew what size bra I wore. Bra Maven seized the straps like a rodeo rider, jerked and jiggled my personage around a little, and as magically as she appeared on the sales floor to frighten customers, back fat and front boobage fell into place and the Volkswagen bra fit perfectly.
“I'll take three.”
Sometimes, it's all about the fit, whether we're talking bras or trucking. One of the reasons trucking companies don't recruit and retain an abundance of female drivers is because they have yet to find a good, comfortable fit.
Find your fit. It's worth it.
This is our new home. Isn't it nice? George built it for me, so I could put a bunch of blog posts and stuff in it. They'll be along the same lines as The George and Wendy Show posts have been for the past six years - stories from the road, about people we meet on the road, rules and regulations that affect those people, and news from the trucking world in general.
We may or may not throw in a few filthy lies, alien encounters and a love of everything Bigfoot, but generally, our topics stay as real as your need for shower shoes at truck stop bathrooms.
Climb in, put on your seatbelt, and enjoy the ride.