I have fleas.
It's Saturday, I look forward to Saturday all week. It's what drives me, keeps me breathing. I can get through any day because there's a Saturday coming. Well, a weekend, but Saturday morning is pretty much a necessity for that.
So I spend the week looking at the paper and "Sunset" magazine on the Internet because have you checked out the cover price on "Sunset"? My head is full of all kinds of wonderful adventures, all requiring less than half a tank of gas. Especially this time of year, because there's a "Harvest Festival" on every coastline and sand dune between Pismo Beach and the Mexican border. How fun does that sound? Pumpkins and autumn leaves and football and that particular softness in the fall air...the cool breeze that punctuates the warm days of Indian Summer. The air in the fall has no promise in it, it's lazy and quiet as if the hemisphere is dozing, not quite ready to hibernate for winter but not as energetic as the breeziness of springtime.
Just what does this have to do with the fleas? Well, there's a fall day out there and, instead of being out at some festival looking for free parking and getting depressed because I can't afford a fifteen dollar slice of pumpkin pie I'm home, trying to figure out what to do with the damn fleas.
The hubster is wondering where they came from. Um...we have a cat? The cat doesn't go outside. Now. The cat used to go outside 17 times an hour until he decided to start going out and spending two days straight in the crawl space under the building. Besides, we're WAY too close to what passes for a foothill here in the urban village and we have coyotes. The cat is fairly smart, but -- well, let's just say I don't trust his speed.
However...unless the cat had never been outside in his eight years and counting, I think it's a fair bet as to where the fleas came from. The weather got hot and the fleas woke up. My younger son and I are spending our spare time trying to find the skin between the bumps on our feet and calves. I have no idea WHY the damn things leave my older son and the hubster alone, I've Googled "Why do fleas bite me and not him?" and all I came up with was some doctor explaining the life cycle of fleas which was not only uninteresting but failed to address the question. Rather like my dentist.
So I'm spending today vacuuming and steam-cleaning the carpets. I would probably be okay with this except that I pretty much spend EVERY weekend doing laundry, vacuuming, dusting, cleaning the kitchen and never, ever going to Harvest Festivals. It doesn't help much that I HATE carpeting with a passion and I especially hate THIS carpeting which my apartment manager deems to be the height of "loser renter" fashion. The carpet, however, is the same color as the dirt that gets tracked in, so it's practical if nothing else. And, believe me, it IS nothing else. We not allowed hardwood floors on the second floor because 1) the owner says that the carpet on the second floors is what stops the leaks into the first floor apartments and 2) the people in the first floor apartments will know there are people living above them if the people in the upper units have laminate with a soundproof underlay. As if the people in the first floor didn't KNOW there were people living upstairs and the paper-thin carpet with the bargain padding muffles the sound of my 6'9" son's footsteps.
I have to accomplish this soon though, it can't be put off and I'm going to a local theater tonight to see a play being stage managed by my son. It's a re-telling of "The Scarlet Letter" except with an even more depressing ending, I understand bludgeoning is involved. While I love watching my son's work, I'm not really looking forward to this. It's being put on by a highly lauded theater company in one of the myriad of small equity waiver theaters in this neck of the woods (meaning Los Angeles). Why can't these companies, as talented and acclaimed as they are, ever put on "Animal Crackers" or "My Sister, Eileen"?
Oh, as to the fleas, I've spent days online trying to figure out how to get rid of them without poisoning myself, or the cat. Apparently I can't. The best I can do is vacuum incessantly, steam-clean the carpets until the backing wears out and wait for them to starve, sometime in the next century. Like Keith Richards and cockroaches, they will survive Armageddon.