Sunday, May 23, 2010

It's Not Home Cookin' Without Some Cat Hair

I promised I'd do something a little lighter in tone, so forgive me if this gets a little off-track- I have a migraine and have taken the medication for it. This could get, ah, interesting.

I'm currently visiting my sister, who lives, with her husband, in Louisville, Kentucky. They're not exactly broke out with excess cash, so I try to pitch in and do things like feed myself while I'm there. Between my food allergies and the LapBand, it's just easier for me to do my own cooking.

My brother-in-law is attending a round of graduation parties hosted by the parents of his parochial school students, so he was out when dinnertime rolled around tonight. My sister took a phone call from a close friend, and since I'd already started cooking, I went ahead and finished preparing my meal, sat down at the kitchen table, and began eating.

I wasn't alone, though. Jack, the Golden Retriever I helped them pick out at the breeder's about three years ago, parked next to the table and stared soulfully at my plate before oozing into the floor. While my Airedales have mastered the intent food-related gaze, nothing tops a retriever of any breed for sloe-eyed guilt. Every once in a while, I'd hear a sigh from the floor. It takes a lot of self-control to not look, and even more to not fall for it. Let's just say that Jack got a few treats from my plate and be done with it...

The interesting part of the meal, however, was the weird tickling sensation I experienced as I chewed a small piece of the round steak I'd pan-seared. Rolling it around on my tongue for a second, I reached into my mouth and extracted the offending object: a long, beige cat hair.

My sister has three cats, only one of whom, Puddy, has long hair. He's a big marmalade tom with a beige undercoat, and there are clumps of his fur attached to the monitor as I type. He was nowhere near the kitchen either while I cooked or as I was eating, so he must've made his deposit earlier in the day.

Some people would've been put off by the idea of a cat hair in their food. I, however, put myself through graduate school waiting tables, and my father was an FDA plant inspector between his masters' degree and med school. One cat hair isn't going to ruin a meal in my world. When it comes to things on the plate, you just can't scare me. It's just not a home-cooked meal around here unless it's got a cat hair in it...

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