Wednesday, October 05, 2005

The cats outnumber me, 8 legs to 2.

I know as a man with cats, I am subject to certain prejudices. I grew up with dogs, but when I was first on my own in my own place, I decided that a dog would not be happy with my then workaholic lifestyle. I wanted some animals in my life, and cats seemed to strike a balance between neediness and self-sufficiency that I could live with while working 12 to 14 hours a day for weeks on end. So I got two, to keep each other company, and they have been a boundless source of both genuine affection and carpet-staining vomit. I wouldn't have it any other way.

Soon though, I was gradually made aware that as a straight man in my late twenties, having cats may have been a dubious choice. The first inkling came in an episode of "Seinfeld" in which Elaine mentions to Jerry and George that she is going to her new boyfriend's home to meet his cats. At the news, George and Jerry turn to each other and then Elaine and say "men with cats?" and then each make a kind of quizzical grunt that lets us all know what they really think of the idea.

But I persevered, and now some 12 years later, the cats and I enjoy a very comfortable soon-to-be middle age. We watch a little TV, we chase a little laser light, it's not a carnival by any means, but it will suffice. So the other day when I was shopping on drugstore.com and looking for an item to push me the 13 cents I needed to get to free shipping, I happened to notice a nifty little disposable cat litter pan and clicked away to learn more.

Drugstore.com, like Amazon, buy.com and other e-commerce sites, likes to let you know what people who have bought the item you are looking at have also bought along with it. You're buying a wireless internet router, well, better consider a USB wireless adapter or possibly a high-gain antenna. It's not a bad idea, I guess, and it's sometimes quite a useful tool. So drugstore.com had lined up some suggestions for me at the bottom of the page, and I scrolled down to take a look.

Carefully selected for me to choose from, in order of quantity and size, were four boxes of high-absorbency tampons.

Thanks for that, drugstore.com. Thanks for that, indeed.

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