1.) A young adolescent cat leaps onto my porch where I am innocently reading.
2.) Child--sensing a disturbance in the Force--comes down the hall from his bedroom.
3.) Cat for no reason plasters itself against glass door.
4.) Door opens and I watch a Disney romantic comedy in progress as two--beings?--find each other like there should be a goddamn soundtrack playing featuring Mariah Carey.
I told Child: this cat belongs to someone (please God); I'll talk to the office first thing in the morning. Child--who is nineteen--acted like I'd just killed the cat in front of him and ate its still-steaming flesh. Whatever.
By look and feel, it's just barely starting catdolescence, but it's not feral (I grew up in the country, by this point in its age, feral would show), it's not skinny or starving, it has no injuries or rashes or scars or missing fur, it's not rabid or ill, so I'm fairly sure this is a new cat for someone, but here is the problem I ran into this morning: it won't leave.
Let me explain: this morning, Child went to work and the cat got out and ran for it when he opened the door. (I was still asleep, so that I found out later.) When I got up, I puttered then realized it was on the hour and three to four Pokemon would appear.
(Note: one on my porch, one on the porch next door, one across the road at building one, and optional one on the road just outside building four. Only two will be pidgies or rattats; one is always a Magikarp, Psyduck, or Tentaclewhatever and that's only ones I can catch from my freaking porch. Every. Hour. Yes, I live now in Poketopia. Could really use a Pokestop though.)
I opened the door and the cat--who was sitting there on the Welcome rug (which was not a goddamn cat invitation, not like they can read. Can they?), apparently waiting--looked at me like it was questioning why I was late and came inside, then proceeded to drink some water and collapse inconveniently between my moving feet (and be outraged when I almost fell over her). I tried after the next Poke collection--just to see waht happened--setting her outside and closing the door; maybe it would go home? When I opened the door, she hadn't even moved, disgust and disappointment radiating from her before coming back inside, going to my moose (stuffed) on the chair in the living room, and blatantly falling asleep like the least subtle 'fuck you' in history.
After all this, I went to the office--feeling desperate--and asked if a cat had been reported missing. No (because it didnt' exist before showing up on my porch, maybe?). I showed a pic of the cat and got a 'coo' from the manager (thanks), a story about her adopting a French bulldog, and a promise to post to the community board but if no one claimed it by Tuesday, we could adopt it. She also congratulated me on my cat acquisition serenely unaware of the irony since basically, on Tuesday, I will be paying for the privilege of being acquired by an adolescent cat who is kind of a dick.
Here was my day with Cat:
1.) She literally--and I do mean literally--sees me walk and immediately collapses and tries to fall asleep between my moving feet. I'm not kidding; like, once is one thing, but it keeps happening.
2.) TMI TMI TMI - it's that time of the month and I did not close the bathroom door firmly enough. Let me tell you, there is nothing quite like the moment you are two-thirds through a tampon insertion and a cat lands on your goddamn knee and leans down to see what you're doing.
(I don't even have a working idea how I feel about it (shock, horror, acknowledgment of the hilarity to be found in slang). I keep getting caught up at the fact it actually happened.)
3.) As I start into the living room, cat immediately stretches out across the rug directly in my path for no reason whatsoever. And stares up at me the whole time. Amused.
4.) Cat vanishes--as they do--and then appears abruptly behind me for funtimes, the fucker.
5.) Cat sees me reading my Kindle and is offended. I don't know why. It didn't want me to pet it or anything; it just didn't like to see me happy, I think.
6.) Every time I opened the front door, she gave me a contemptuous look and collapsed on the inside door rug when the door was half-way open so I had to scooch out for my Pokemon walk (my complex is Poketopia, did I mention that?); hey, fucker, not everything is about you.
7.) Cat wants to be picked up but not held; I finally worked out she wants me to pick her up so she can contemptuously jump from my arms to the nearest surface to show her disdain.
I could go on--and kind of want to--but I'm still dealing with the fact I honestly don't think this cat is like, a normal run of the mill contemptuous cat. In a complex filled with random cats of all colors, this is the first black one we've seen, one, and two, is a dead ringer for a (much) younger Jojo, Child's former cat that my mom played the 'I am a lonely grandmother' card to snatch from Child when we moved. (It was a masterful performance: 99% on Rotten Tomatoes.)
Yes, black cat, but the exact same eyes down to the thick off-green color, the exact same body shape, the same fur, the same single tiny almost invisible patch of like, five white hairs just before the tail you can only see if she's in your lap--and randomly appears on my porch and falls desperately in love with Child at first sight?
I don't think we're going to find the owner; I think this cat didn't exist before appearing on my porch--at midnight--because I don't know yet, a curse or realities melting into each other, I have no idea. And I don't think its unrelated that three times in the last five days--three times--my porch pidgey/rattata (like, almost always) was instead a Meowth, the first ones I'd ever seen. Which is a pokecat villain, btw.
Where I come from, that's foreshadowing.
Glad I got that off my chest.
1.) Got my bed set up finally, directly under the ceiling fan because it was the only way to keep my posts and holy shit recommended.
2.) My porch now boasts a rug, a patio table, and a patio loveseat. I feel very--like I have a small plastic outdoor living room?
3.) Got a wifi doorbell. Because why the hell not?
4.) Acquired a Samsung SmarthThings hub with two (2) multipurpose sensors, one (1) motion sensor, and one (1) arrival sensor because I'm not sure really and we'll get to that now.
This was going to happen from the moment I got the Echo and realized I could live in Star Trek. So let's just go with it.
So the Samsung SmartThings Hub is a hub for your desire to do DIY home security but without actually having to know too much and not be exactly state of the art secure. There are many things you can get to go with the hub that joins them together: multipurpose sensor, motion sensor, water sensor, arrival sensor, just [noun] sensor.
The beauty is all the pieces to play with and how you can integrate it with other things (like lights and appliances and pet care); it satisfies the desire to collect useless things until you have all of them while technically being able to argue they're useful and necessary.
Motion Sensors - self explanatory.
Multipurpose Sensors - for doors and windows or maybe drawers, go to town! They tell you if they are opened or closed (with magnetism!), which is awesome, but also? TELL TEMPERATURE. So every hour, I open the app to discover the temperature by the front door is like, two degrees cooler than that of the sliding door to the porch! They can also pick up vibrations and can tell you if someone is knocking at your door, and I mean, there's like a list of things you can use them for.
Arrival Sensor - you can attach this to your keychain, child, or pet to tell you when they leave the range of the hub (leave the house/apartment). Or if you are inside the range of the hub, you can find your keys by doing something (not sure yet, I only managed it by accident) and it will beep! They can also be used as a trigger; when you leave the hub, you can trigger all the lights turning off and lowering the thermostat (if it's compatible with the hub) and arm your home by turning on the motion sensors and sending you text messages if your doors are opened or motion is detected. If you have sirens--I don't (yet)--you can set them to go off! I should get sirens.
I don't pretend this isn't an excuse for me to play with new tech toys. It is, I am, and holy shit this is fun. So far, I've set up five routines--one called "naptime" because why the fuck not?--to turn on, off, or dim lights throughout the apartment, activate all sensors, and get text messages telling me I just opened my own front door. I have spent more hours than I want ot admit wandering a seven hundred and change square foot apartment with the Yorktown on repeat with my phone and calling commands to Alexa to turn on and off the lights as I pass like I am a god while reading the logs of the motion detector in the app every time I pass it. I am living the dream.
Even if you get all the SmartThings accessories, your life isn't over; you can get SmartThings compatible smart appliances from Samsung! Not a smart toaster or smart mixer or smart egg cooker here, no: I'm talking major appliances like washers and dryers, ranges, air conditioners, robot vacuums, and refrigerators that can also be controlled by the hub and accessed by the app!
So you can throw your clothes in the washer and/or dryer with appropriate accessories (SmartThings laundry detergent isn't available yet, but it's only a matter of time, I'm sure. Until then, we settle for Tide or whatever), and instead of having to stand there like a chump and turn it on, you can walk away and sit on the couch, open the app, and have it remind you that dress is permanent press and that's the only nice thing you have to wear do you really want to wash it with reds and jeans?
Your refrigerator can tell you what's in it and silently judge you when it tells you all you have is milk, cake, Mexican Coke, and Muenster cheese slices that were buy two packages for five dollars and note the eight pints of ice cream and fourteen three-for-a-dollar frozen burritos in the freezer and pointedly not remark you own nothing that qualifies as food and those burritos may not even qualify as organic material.
Your range can tell you it's on and has been for days, did you want to cook something anytime soon or did you forget again and think you can live on Keurig coffee and frozen burritos? At least buy some goddamn Ramen. The air conditioner can abruptly turn on "Sahara heat wave" while the robot vacuum traps you in your room and your SmartThings multipurpose sensors use magnetism to keep the windows shut until you promise to do something with your life, why are you like this?
All. From. An. App.
Living the dream, y'all.
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