Speed & Demons

I went outside this morning to leave offerings for Grey Cat, and was astonished to see a hearse speeding down my street, its tires squealing as it went around the corner. A speeding hearse is a strange sight indeed.

About a week ago, I started leaving food and water under the porch for Grey Cat, a handsome stray who often suns himself on my garage roof. It occurred to me that he might be having a hard time finding water now that the winter rains are over and we might have to start rationing soon. And if I’m leaving water, why not food?

I wasn’t sure if he was the one emptying out the bowls, but this morning, I saw his tail slipping under the porch, and the kittens watched carefully. Eventually, he emerged and had a bath, which made me happy. I hope that eventually I can get close enough to pet him and maybe even get him to the vet for a check-up and spay/neuter. He can be my outside cat. I should think of a better name than Grey Cat, though.

I should also get packing for this Florida thing. I’m hoping to get by with carry-on, since I get to Tampa at 9 pm and then have an hour’s drive to the resort where the conference is being held. Apparently they are going to send a car for me, which is the most exciting part of the trip so far. I’ve always wanted to be one of those people who are met at the airport by a chauffeur holding a sign. I can pretend to be a movie star!

Yesterday, I printed out the agenda, and it is disturbingly full of cocktails and assorted social events. As you all know by now, I am by no means cocktail-averse, but I have never liked drinking with coworkers. I don’t know what’s worse: seeing your boss tipsy, or having him/her experience your alcohol (in)tolerance. At my old job, there was a guy who got so tanked at our yearly conference that he peed in the bar manager’s office, mistaking it for the bathroom. More than a decade later, I still remember this event, and I’m not the only one, since it came up every year at annual conference time.

So I think I’ll stick to soda water and avoid disgracing myself any further than I already will by not being an actual grown-up. If anyone asks me about it, I’ll get all tragic and murmur “rehab” and “recovery” and see how embarrassed they get.

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