Author Topic: Hey, look what I 'mined' from the 'old place' in a quick visit this evening.  (Read 174 times)


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May Amuse: "The Pissy-Cat". A man, a gun, a cat, and an aerosol can of cream
« on: June 14, 2007, 06:52:40 PM »

          This was originally a letter to my Uncle in Canada, suggesting that Looniness in Uncles may well be hereditary.  NB:  No animals were harmed during the research for this tale.


          As an Englishman (albeit 'colonialised') - with our racially programmed love-hate relationship with small furry animals - you might appreciate the following story.

          The Pissy Cat
          (An Englishman, a Rifle, a Cat, and a Can of Cream.)

          Mother bought some aerosol 'squirty cream'.  Cream which also contained Brandy.  Quite a serious amount of Brandy as it happens.  The real stuff too, not just some chemical flavouring masquerading as the real thing.

          But...  It got 'lost' in the bottom of the fridge until it was well past the 'use by' date.  My horrified taste buds revealed that whilst the Brandy part was still fine the cream was most definitely off.

          Young G (my Nephew) arrived just in time to see me crouched over the sink with my tongue sticking out, refusing to put it back in until I'd scrubbed away the taste of sour cream.

          Whilst I was suffering - and trying to swear without moving my tongue - Mother was agonising over the best way to dispose of the can, because apart from that one little squirt it was still fully pressurised, with the usual warning notice.

          "I could always shoot it."  I announced casually once my tongue was fit to resume speaking duties.

          G was delighted!  Being the family pyromaniac he would have preferred to stick it on a fire until it exploded.  But no red-blooded teenager can resist watching his Mad Uncle do something that sensible - and usually only half-informed - adults see as incredibly dangerous.

          I remember watching you - and doubtless encouraging you - to do things that common sense should have warned against.  Things like dropping eggs from a bedroom window, or throwing them through the blades of a large revolving fan, or taping matches to the fan blades and arranging for them to gently strike across a matchbox.

          I still recall - with undiminished pleasure - the look of horror on your face when one of the matches flew off the fan and dived into the dust under your bed.  Closely pursued by one of that fine English species, Unclus Loonicus.

          At least we both had the good taste not to prove what happens when the sh*t hits the fan!

          Returning to the present...

          I know that such cans always say 'DO NOT PUNCTURE - EVEN WHEN EMPTY' but, unless you are daft enough to Grab & Stab, it's nowhere near as dangerous as people seem to think.  If aerosols were as dangerous as rumour suggests they wouldn't be allowed on shop shelves.  Aerosols of lighter fuel are a different game entirely, but I wouldn't play with those.

          So the scene was set for some serious fun with Uncle's gun.  Don't worry, I'll get to the cat in a minute.  It's called Kerry, by the way.  The cat, not the cream.

          The can was strategically placed at the bottom of the garden whilst we had dinner, sitting in the sunlight to bump the pressure a bit higher.  Pressure in the can, not us.  Although G was fizzing a bit with anticipation.

          After dinner I fired two shots.  One at a spare can to make sure I still knew which end to point at the target - it's been a long time since I fired a shot in anger, or even in cold deliberation - and the serious one which drilled a neat hole right through the middle of the pressurised can.

          There was no spectacular bang...  Just a demented hissing as the can leapt into the air and cart-wheeled around the garden, spraying cream in all directions for about two seconds.  Just as well we took the washing in first!

          Going to explore the aftermath we found the garden - and the overhanging tree - reeking of Brandy and looking as if a flock of pigeons on Ex-Lax had been using it for target practice.

          With rain forecast we didn't worry about cleaning up.  I declared the can 'dynamically de-pressurised' and binned the mortal remains.  Unfortunately it didn't rain  that evening.

          The next day I was fascinated to see some zig-zaggy tracks in the grass and followed them to one of our bushes where Kerry was sleeping it off.   I woke her to make sure she wasn't dead - she's a pretty old lady - and instead of being her usual alert and thoroughly wild self she looked totally plastered.

          When she reluctantly moved it was with extreme caution, as if every action hurt.  Closer study of her tracks revealed that she's been forth and back from her 'crash out corner' several times.

          So there you have it, the sad and salutary tale of an involuntarily piss-head cat.  Three days later she seems to have recovered, but she still stops and looks wistfully at the end of the garden when passing through.

          And one is left with this serious thought:  "There may be controls on guns and fireworks, but surely these cans of aerosol cream should only be handled by properly trained  and certified professionals!  Not certifiable amateurs!


          Footnote: Kerry is now - amazingly - nearly thirty years old, which rather supports the old saying that 'a little of what you fancy does you good.'.