I was sitting at the ol' computer when I got an IM from an old friend. I haven't talked to her in a while, and as it turned out I had been meaning to get in touch with her to share some sad news. I even wrote something to the effect of "hey, I'm glad you caught me, I've been meaning to talk to you about some sad news."
See, my father had just taken his cat to the vet a week earlier for that final visit. Yeah, that visit. Piper was not a healthy cat. There were a number of things that Piper was suffering from, but she was a happy cat. On a side note, I talked to Dad later and I don't think he's been that sad in a very long time. He really loved that cat.
And I did too. Because before Piper was my parents' cat, she was my cat. I got Piper when I was in university. I had always wanted a cat, and Piper fit the bill (she was a cat, you see). She was a great cat. She thought she was a dog for the most part. She would follow me around. If she was outside when I had to go to class, I used to have to trick her by going in the back door and then running out the front door. Otherwise, she would trail behind me all the way to campus. She used to do this to Dad too, later, when he would find her in the church after she'd followed him from the house.
Piper was, in all honesty, my favorite feline (please do not read that last bit aloud to the cat that is currently purring quite contentedly on my lap). Which was why it was so hard when I moved to Halifax. I couldn't take her from being an outdoor cat with a giant yard and trees and shade and stuff her into an apartment where I couldn't let her out. Yes, I know you CAN let cats outdoors in the city, but I was fond of her and wanted her to live. After a long discussion, my father agreed to keep Piper.
Come to think of it, that conversation went something like: "Dad, I am moving to Halifax." "Piper stays here."
And so, Piper became my father's cat.
But before Piper was my cat, she was M's cat. M and her boyfriend had gotten Piper when she was just a kitten (Piper, not M). Piper was on cute friggin' kitten, let me tell you. Fast forward a couple of years, M moves in with myself and three other folks (one of them being M's ex-boyfriend, which, wow, let me tell ya something, he's a series of posts unto himself), and Piper becomes the sixth housemate. Before you know it, it's the end of school and M is leaving and trying to find someone to take care of Piper.
And so, Piper became my cat.
To recap: Piper is my Dad's cat, was my cat, and was M's cat before that.
M, if you're reading this I didn't save our chat window so I'm kind of winging it on memory here. I'm really paraphrasing, but here goes.
Me: I have sad news.
M: Uh oh.
Me: Yeah, Dad took Piper to the vet to be put to sleep.
M: Oh that's sad. Thank you for taking care of her for me.
Me: She was a great cat.
M: So not to pry or anything, but I noticed that R (my wife) had changed her relationship status to single.
Okay, it may not have been that jarring a transition, but that's kind of how it felt to me in retrospect. She thought I was about to open up about splitting up with my wife and I'm telling her about a cat.
There were a few things that went through my mind in the time it took me to respond with my oh-so-coherently worded "What?"
Here's a fairly accurate transcript of my inner monologue:
Holy crap, did my wife leave me? That seems like something I would remember, but I am really tired right now, so maybe I missed it. Why am I so tired? Oh, yes, because I stayed up until WAY too late playing video games, watching movies and drinking WAY more Coke than I should at my age at that time of the night. I don't normally stay up that late, or sleep in this long. Oh, that's right, I did it because R was away and I could stay up that late without feeling guilty about it. Wait, why is R gone? Did she leave me? Holy crap, she's not here, she must have left me. No, I dropped her off. Right, I dropped her off at Brownie Camp. Ha ha, she hasn't left me at all, she's just at Brownie Camp being awesome with kids, and I know this because I dropped her off there. Unless, maybe she just TOLD me she was going to Brownie Camp and she had actually been planning to leave me all this time, but couldn't figure out a way to tell me...so she got me to drop her off at Brownie Camp so she could get picked up by whoever she's going to live with now? Maybe I should check out her facebook page, maybe M was just looking at the wrong person.
Nope, no relationship status.
Holy crap I'm getting a divorce. That's the only logical reason for this.
Well, that or this conversation that I suddenly remembered having with R:
R: I think I'm going to delete my facebook page. I don't like having my personal information on the Internet like that.I explained what R was doing, and that we were still very much still married. I was also pleasantly surprised to discover that according to what information was left on R's facebook profile, she was now only 23 years old, which means that I must be pretty awesome to score such a hot young wife. And not creepy for marrying her 8 years ago when she was just 15 or because we'd been dating since she was like 12.
Me: Makes sense.
Let's just go with hot 23 year old wife.
Turns out that M wasn't the only one that thought that things must have gone sour. R's cousin thought the same thing when she saw her page. R has since added a "Dear everyone, we're still married" message on facebook until she's decided whether to leave it entirely or not.
I'm a little scared what might happen if she deletes her profile. I may get condolence cards.
Oh, Internet, you've done it again.