1. My parents are coming to visit this weekend.
  2. They are visiting with us on Thursday evening and staying over Friday night.
  3. We have very little food in the house.
  4. We don't have a lot of money for more food in the house.
  5. Rather, we probably do have a little money for food in the house, but it might be needed for beer therapy on Saturday.
  6. I have not seen my parents, or indeed any of my family, since sometime late in 2005, so it's about time we got together. Plus, Thursday is my father's sixty-second birthday, and they need someone with younger eyes to accurately count the grey hairs on his head.
  7. Our house, as usual, is a complete mess of dirty walls, floors, bird cages, furniture, dead plants, and clutter. I feel completely overwhelmed with it as it sits atop my deep well of recent anxieties.
  8. I look at our apartment and think: If I wipe that mark off that kitchen drawer, I will have to wipe the one next to it, and then I'll see another and have to wipe that one. Then the kitchen walls will look awful next to the clean white drawers, and I will have to wash those as well. Then there will be the cupboards above the counter, the stove, and the floor. It will spread into the hall, the bathroom, the bedroom. The dead plants in the living room that the cat, Oskar, likes to eat will become a source of shame, proof of my lack of ability to keep order, when only moments before they were an existential private joke to me about futility and dirt.
  9. How is it that in front of family, my regular daily life can suddenly turn into a distressing display of dirty underwear?
  10. A note in my favour: I did clean out the refrigerator last night. Of course, because I and cleaning are not a harmonious duo, it was a long struggle impeded by crud, my sudden fear of the chemicals in our cleaning supplies, and Oskar.

    I locked him in the bedroom to ease the operation, but he yowled mournfully and then proceeded to attack the bed. I sprung him from his emotionally painful incarceration when it became clear to me where the holes in our sheets have been coming from. The only other room I could lock him up in was the bathroom, but he has already put his claws through the linoleum in there.

    So, as a result, things looked like this, if you imagine them as a series of time-elapsed snapshots: Oskar on the shelving in the fridge; Oskar stealing spinach leaves and squirreling them away by our shoes in the hall; Oskar inside the salad crisper (which name has never made sense to me, because the only thing I find in there is dark mush); Oskar attempting to eat a styrofoam egg carton; Oskar licking mould off the top of the oldest leftover soft cat food I have ever seen; Oskar pulling a drying fridge drawer down on top of him, and insodoing filling it will fine black fur (of course, you can't see the fur or him inside the overturned drawer, but you can extrapolate the consequences); Oskar working the plastic off his teeth after a failed attempt at stealing a two-pound bag of carrots.

    I don't live with a cat. I live with goat-puppy.

  11. Today, the bird cages get a cleaning. I can just see the fun now.
  12. I am suffering wild levels of anxiety lately; cleaning makes me anxious; I have to entertain guests when even going to other people's houses can make me jittery. OH DEAR GAWD, WHY CAN'T MARCH JUST LAY DOWN AND DIE LIKE THE MANGLED, LIMPING WRECK IT IS ALREADY?
  13. One day, and I promise that it may be soon, I will have a life beyond this current spate of crazy. I will be so cool then that you will want to have me over to all your sleepovers just so your other friends will think you're even cooler.