the old man and the cat

For those of you who like to drop by and read the conversations I record between me and Schmutzie (or steal them, as the case may be), you should know that this conversation never happened. It is not possible for this conversation to happen, because these words should never issue from anyone's mouth in the sequence set down here, nor should they be recorded and played over a small portable speaker system, nor pressed to vinyl and played to crowds, nor committed to cassette tape and snuck into even light to medium rotation on the local Lite FM. If and when mp3 files become invented (please forgive me - I am pretending for the purposes of this entry that mp3s and other popular digital audio compression formats do not yet exist) it will not be permissible to convert a recording to said format and download it to your iPod - whatever that is. Those with minds so depraved as to even imagine this conversation deserve to be thrown into a deep pit and screamed at by men with sharp sticks and fearsome moustaches. This last is particularly important to impress on you, because once you read this conversation it will be lodged in your mind, and you will deserve the pit and the screams and the moustaches and the whole package of bad incarceration experiences, which I will not go into here. If, like me, you do not believe in heaven or hell but in a system of karma in which everything that you deserve will eventually be granted, there will be a day for us all involving a deep pit and the enraged screams of the men with moustaches. And lastly, those who steal this conversation WILL HAVE THEIR SHITTY OPEN DIARY WEBLOGS TAKEN DOWN, LIZZY.

Anyway. This conversation, which never happened, took place between an old man and a cat in a dark hallway. Schmutzie was out with a friend or getting coffee cream or something, whatever it is that Schmutzies do when I'm not around. The Old Man is actually thirty-four, but this exchange makes more sense if you picture a very senile old guy trying to talk to a cat.

Old Man: Did you know, cat, the truth is that there are moments that I mistake you for a boot in the hallway.

Cat: (meow)

Old Man: No, not any boot. You are not of a size that I should take you for a parade boot. You are too large. Nor would I say that you are of sufficient size that I would spy a garrison boot leaning against the wall and offer it a cat treat.

Cat: (meow)

Old Man: In fact it is likely that I would mistake you for a boot of intermediate size, such as a twelve-eyelet Doc Marten.

Cat: (purr)

Old Man: Oh, definitely a matte leather, since the glint of patent leather caps on the toe would reveal instantly which was the boot, which cat.

Cat: (meow)

Old Man: You have nailed the very problem. We have no twelve-eyelet Doc Marten boot of any colour, nor any boot to match the size of your body. So what is that I am seeing that I mistake for you?

Cat: (huff)

Old Man: Possible, but not likely. It's most likely that I am hallucinating a boot in the darkened hallway, and that it is actually you that I am seeing. Therefore I ask that you take care in an emergency to avoid the hallway, lest I try to put you on my foot in my panic, using your limbs and tail as laces and your belly as my sole. Your head would be fine fancy toecaps.

Cat: (meow)

Old Man: I would hobble outside and all the neighbours would want to know why my boot was so ungainly, why my fine fancy toecaps were biting my toes and my laces were clawing at my ankles.

Cat: ---

Old Man: Don't you walk away from me! They would have a right to know!

(Door opens)

Schmutzie: It's cold out there. What have you been doing?

Old Man: Talking with the cat.

Schmutzie: Uh-huh. I bet.