Questionable parenting

It’s 8 AM.  I’m sipping coffee and staring blankly at my laptop.  The usual.

There’s a knock on the door.

I heave myself out of my chair with a dramatic sigh, as if the door-knocker is interrupting something terribly important and urgent.  (As if!)  It’s probably the maintenance guy, calling on some minor chore.  Or the UPS guy, pulling a knock-and-run.

Or not.  It’s my neighbor.  (Who happens to be tall, hot, and British. Facts which I note here simply to help paint an accurate portrait of the scene for you, dear readers, because of course I am married and would never notice such details otherwise.)

“Hi!  You have a white cat, yes?” 

Excusemewhat? I strain to process the actual words, because – hello, accent.  White.  Cat.  Yes.  Shit.  I mumble something awkward and affirmative.

“Brilliant!  I’ve been trying to find its home.  It’s been wandering around in the hall for a little bit now.”

Three things happen simultaneously: (1) My panicked mind races to recall the last time I saw Emmy in the apartment, and comes up blank; (2) I mumble more awkward things, this time apologetic in nature and laced with mild profanity; and (3) I squint toward the end of the hallway and spot a jiggly white blob in the distance, trotting toward me.

“Hey, it’s all right, it’s quite a nice cat,” neighbor guy reassures me.  It suddenly occurs to me that I’m an odd-looking mess: cropped yoga pants, pink compression socks, uncombed hair.

“It was sleeping in front of my door just now,” he continues. 

I can feel that my cheeks are turning the color of my socks.  What the hell kind of pet parent am I?  My poor cat, in all likelihood, spent the night in the HALLWAY?  And I didn’t even notice she was missing?  I feel awful.

Just when I think the humiliation level has peaked, Emmy breaks in to a full sprint and charges toward the door, belly swaying back and forth below her like some kind of bizarre pendulum.  Bless her heart, I love my kitty, but her gallop is very unflattering.

I thank neighbor guy repeatedly (says he: “Allright!  Cheers!”  OMG.)  I retreat back into my apartment, wherein I fill the food bowl to the brim and administer multiple kitty treats.  Oh, the guilt.

Thankfully, Emmy appears to be no worse for the wear.  She’s back to her favorite activity: tanning.

Perhaps she was just trying to foster friendly relations within the building.


Today’s EAT: Dinner dilemma: I needed something to complement a lone piece of leftover pizza and salad.  Solution: stuffed mushrooms!

Recipe: Stuffed Mushrooms (via Pioneer Woman)

I used Italian chicken sausage and left out the cream cheese.  These are….pretty healthy, I think?  Especially with a lean sausage and reduced cheese load?  Could be worse.  And they were super quick to make, especially with the help of my little food chopper machine.

The hubs and I both stated for the record that they were just as excellent as the restaurant version.  I’ll definitely make these again!

Today’s DRINK: Because it had to be opened for the mushrooms.  Excuses…

This Tilia Chardonnay was fine.  Definitely a Chard of the clean, citrus-y sort – rather than super buttery or oak-y.

Today’s RUN: Track time!  I assigned myself a classic workout: 12X400M at 5K pace.  I thought it would be fitting, in light of Sunday’s 5K, to simulate goal race pace a bit.  (If the race were on a flat track and punctuated by 200M recovery jogs every 90 seconds.  Where do I sign up for that race?)

Anyway, it went pretty well!  I hadn’t run 400s in quite a while (since…September, maybe?) so I knew I’d be looking at comparatively slower splits.  Fine.  Gotta start somewhere.

I mentally broke the workout in to thirds to help visualize it as a 5K race.  Here’s how things came out:

97, 98, 98, 97 [mile 1 – 6:30]

97, 96, 98, 95 [mile 2 – 6:26]

97, 94, 94, 92 [mile 3 – 6:17]

Good enough – especially for a solo session.  It’s hard to run fast alone.  I’m sure I would have pushed it harder if I’d had someone to chase…but then again, maybe it’s a good thing I didn’t, as I stayed a lot closer to true 5K pace than I normally do with this workout.

I also had to really discipline myself to keep it continuous: interval goes right in to recovery shuffle and back in to interval.  It’s easy to get lazy and dawdle on the track.

Total with warm-up, cool-down, recovery, etc: 8.5 miles.

Today’s QUESTION: Do accents do it for you? I could listen to Brits or Aussies talk alllllll day long.


38 responses to “Questionable parenting

  1. Tall, hot and British? Do I need to come visit?

  2. I’m a total stereotype: loooooooove British guys. Even if they are an average-looking sort with funny ears and bad teeth and a beer gut, there’s something so charming about them. I mean, part of why @idiotrunner is so great is…HE’S ENGLISH and says lovely things like “right, then” and “bloody right” and “let’s give this a go, shall we?” What American man talks that way?

    That one of the storylines in “Love Actually” (yes, you have seen it too and liked it, people) is a British guy who goes off in search of loose, large-breasted American women is a hilarious flip on the stereotype.

  3. I do love the British accent. Irish is cool too. 🙂

  4. Hahaha, this had my laughing out loud multiple times. My cat has pulled the houdini act multiple times and I’ve had the neighbors knocking on our front door holding her saying she was in their house. Don’t feel tooooo bad. haha.

  5. Some people actually marry Brits solely for that reason…

    Anyhoo, I’m still picturing Emmy waddling down the hallway. We reall need to have a fat kitty playdate. My first kitty, Iz (who is alas no longer with us), got out during a GD tornado one year and spent FOUR DAYS IN TEH WILDZ. One morning I just looked out and there she was on the deck, sleezing around with the neighborhood tomcat. She acted like she didn’t know me for a second and it broke my heart. I think she only came back for the food.

  6. Oh accents totally do it for me. I had a handful of Kiwis (people from New Zealand) stay with me for a weekend last summer. I literally just sat and listened to them talk all hours into the night. They sound like Aussies, btw.

    One was tall and hot, too. They offered me a place to stay should I ever venture down under….needless to say, I’m already planning.

  7. Yes, I love accents. I’m definitely a sucker for them.

    As for the cat, I know that feeling. My husband accidentally shut our cat in our bedroom for three hours the other day and I was freaking out about it. “No food, no water, no litter box! Oh, the poor little boy is probably scarred!!” Nah, he was fine. Also, my cat has that little belly that jiggles, too. Don’t feel bad about the cat…just be glad she was in the hallway and not outside where she could’ve really gotten hurt or in trouble!

  8. I just interviewed with the dep’t head (I’m temp now, hopefully permanent soon!) and he has a British accent and it made the interview seem SO much less intimidating. Love accents so much.

  9. i think she was just trying to get the hot british boy to come visit. perhaps i should get a cat just for that….i wonder if i can request one that has that kind of radar sense on it…hmmmmmmmmmmmmm

  10. I’m a fan of accents, especially British or Aussie. Somehow they make even the most mundane conversation a whole lot more fun!

  11. Ummmmmmm………of course, silly girl!!! But Australians do it most for me. 🙂

  12. Kace- WE DONT SOUND LIKE AUSSIES!!!!!!!! Sorry, we really don’t and the fastest way to make a kiwi mad is to tell them they sound like an aussie. And vice versa. The accents a similar in the way that american accents are similar to candian accents.

    Moving on…I love american accents. I could talk to american people all day and I plan on moving over there at some point. If I had to pick a fave accent out of all the different ones…dunno if I could, I like all the varied accents.

    • That is fascinating! I know tons of Americans who are nuts over Aussie/NZ accents (which are SIMILAR…haha…but I’m sure sound pretty different if you’re used to hearing both) but I never considered that it would work the other way around, too!

  13. British accents do me in EVERY TIME. Mmmm….

  14. No, because I immediately realize the dude is probably uncircumsized.



    Related: Link

    Also related: Nice 400s! Those are PAINFUL period, even moreso solo.

  15. DAMN, MY COMMENT ENDED UP IN MODERATION. Sorry for the broken tag. BOO

  16. This entire story cracks me up. The cat waddling around the hallway. The embarrassed mumbling. The uncombed hair. The Brit punctuating his prose with endearing things like “cheers.” Your pet stories are always exciting rather than gushy and boring.

    Accents. Yes. 100%. I like the varying Irish and Scottish regional ones, too. They seem to increase a man’s hotness by a factor of 100.

  17. I’ve never really liked accents because I have a problem with my right ear that makes it hard for me to tell what the heck people are saying in the first place but I did date a Nigerian guy once who had the most amazing accent and pretty much all I wanted to do all day was hear him say my name over and over again. SAP!

  18. OMGosh, yes. British and Austrialian accents are my fave! I have a weird love for Chase’s character on House just because of his accent.

    I have some friends from Trinidad that have a pretty cool accent too.

  19. I wouldn’t say it’s bad parenting at all. Sounds to me, your kitty-child stayed out past curfew and forgot her house key!

    If it makes you feel any better, my neighbors cats are always hanging out on our porch and outside our front door. They are the neighborhood tramps though…

  20. lifeisbeachykeen

    Oh no, poor kitty. I can totally see how a cat could be missing and you wouldn’t notice. They are all sly, and quiet. My dogs are loud and obnoxious.
    I do dig accents, southern accents are the best..and a good aussie accent is hot as well.

  21. Awww Emmy. Such a cutie. Do you let them go outside or roam and come back when they want or did she just get out by accident? Silly kitty. At least she knows where home is. 😀

    I like certain accents from certain people. I love a Spanish accent and don’t care for the French accent, but love to hear Eric Ripert talk and could listen to him Mmmm.

  22. oooh a hot British neighbor?? I’m so jealous. British, Australian, Irish, they all make me swoon. I could listen to them all day too…

  23. A hot british neighbor!! I am so jealous. If you won’t be taking advantage, do you mind sending him my way? 🙂

  24. I’m swooning over this British guy…can I move for a bit, I’ve got a cute black cat that will ensure your British neighbor will come a knocking again!

    Oh, and being the married woman I am it is obvious I am just trying to help you out in terms of creating yet another blog post about cats and your neighbors…nothing to do with the British accent of a tall hottie down the hall…

  25. I cam totally picture the scene, you describe everything so well. Yup, I love an accent, and Brits have one of the best :-D. Glad Emmy made it back to you. Did you ever figure out exactly how she escaped??

  26. Back when R was a single parent, Kinney – the tubby one-eyed cat who comprises 1/3 of our current brood – was lost. For like a week. She cried. She put up signs. She received a call…”He’s been sitting outside my door crying for days.” Apparently he was sitting outside someone’s door because it was identical to his own door. I thought they had keen senses of smell that would prevent mistakes like that.

    Another time, R still being a single parent, the same thing happened. Only this time the bar down the street called. He hadn’t been crying this time, he had been happily living off french fries and beer never having a worry that his mom was in utter distress. At least Emmy wasn’t passed out with an empty in a paper bag next to her. THEN you would feel like a bad parent.

  27. OMG you killed me with this post. Thank you. I needed a laugh.

  28. Dude. Do you live next to Reese from P&CE?! 🙂

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