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Saturday, August 21, 2010

Listen, Mr. Cat Burglar...

It's finally become hot here in the urban village. Like 100+ degrees. We have lot of windows here, a flat roof and a very old window unit in the dining room. Needless to say, sleep isn't all that good right now, at least for us. The dining room furniture is quite comfortable though. Since it was too hot to sleep, I stayed up watching Katharine Hepburn movies until I finally dozed off. I didn't see the end of "Summertime" which kind of annoyed me, I rolled over when the hubster came in and found someone on the television telling me how to cure my zits. How much you want to bet that THIS time Rossano Brazzi grew a pair and didn't let her leave? I probably fell asleep on the previously un-known and much more satisfying alternate ending.

Well, anyway, after about four hours of what passed for sleep I gave up. The sun was up and my son was starting college today and, as we're still without vehicle, his 10am Saturday class means he has to leave by 7:30am to make a 12 mile trip. And then the government bitches people aren't using public transportation and it's OUR fault we drive and keep the price of gas artificially inflated.

I decided to get up because, frankly, I think it stinks when someone has to get up abnormally early and everyone else is contentedly snoozing away.

I was washing the dishes that had accumulated in the sink since last night. Not one Y chromosome will WASH a glass or plate they've used after all the dishes are done, they just put them in the sink and wait for the Palmolive Fairy to show up. So there I am, in my undershirt, baggy seersucker shorts and bare feet, washing glasses, cups, forks, small plates and knives that have obviously been copulating with peanut butter and/or Nutella when I heard the cat yapping outside.

Out of habit, I reached over, opened the door, and in he sauntered, tapping me insistently with his paw to make sure I knew he was there and wished to be fed. As I was dumping Cat Chow into the bowl it hit me.

I opened the door. I didn't UNLOCK the door, I just opened it. Whoever the last person in the kitchen door was had left it open and never bothered to check it. I don't know what bothered me most, the fact that it was unlocked or the fact that no one had bothered to check it and just relied on someone else to keep everything running smoothly. Yeah, that would be me.

The hubster, who is rather pragmatic, basically called this faux pas a "no harm, no foul" although he did agree maybe the door should have been locked. He suggested maybe it would be a good idea to just get in the habit of keeping the door locked all the time.

Here's the problem...that's the kitchen door. As if the place isn't hot enough, the kitchen, of course, gets hotter. So I tend to leave the door standing open. The breeze helps. My neighbor occasionally comes up that way, but not often, I have no problem with that, we say hi and she moves on. Sure, she peeks in my kitchen. That's okay too. As long as I don't have any dirty laundry stacked up in there, wth? I hope to eventually, I'm eying one of those little washer/dryer all in one machine things, and as there's a great, big empty hole under my counter where a cabinet probably was once but never has been since we took possession it should slide right in. But for now, nope, nothing much to see in there. Mostly she likes my curtains.

Besides, as Virginia Woolf once said: "I thought how unpleasant it is to be locked out; and I thought how it is worse, perhaps, to be locked in." Now, I wouldn't be locking myself out of my own place, but it certainly IS unpleasant to be locked in. Well, okay, yeah, I've locked myself out before. Three of us, standing at the door, each one looking at the other two and saying "YOU didn't bring your keys?" And, of course, no one had left the kitchen door open. That evening ended with the removal of a window. A small window. Just enough to get a hand in and trip a lock. It occurs to me that, while we were standing there very noisily and clumsily breaking into our own place no one raised an eyebrow about it. So much for that secure feeling...

Well, then I got to thinking about it. Maybe someone DID come in. And they looked around and thought "Crap. There's nothing in here, I'm leaving". I mean, it's entirely possible that there's nothing to steal, which has me really annoyed. Damn it! What' wrong with MY stuff anyway, you hot weather sneak thief? I've sent years collecting this stuff from some of the finest internet clearance sale sites and second-hand shops in Los Angeles.

I find the fact that we left the door unlocked and no one robbed us to now be highly insulting. Obviously, no one here has any taste. The fact that we live on the wrong side of the tracks in a VERY ritzy, high class neighborhood with a private lake and multi-million dollar homes which are patrolled regularly by both private security firms and city police prowl cars which all use our street full of swimming pool less and central airless rental units as an artery to and from the private country club gates has absolutely nothing to do with it.

However, as long as I was up at that ungodly hour and it was still relatively cool, I seized the opportunity and cleaned out the front closet. I found the phone, five Monopoly games, the fabric I bought three years ago for the outfit I was going to make from the pattern that's been in the desk drawer since June, 2008 and my sewing machine.

I have no excuse now. First on the list are the new shower curtains. Which, if I'm lucky, will lure the next midnight burglar into thinking we have good enough taste to make something worth stealing. Because good taste IS timeless.

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