Sunday, June 01, 2008

The Thing I Love Most About Not Showering For Four Days

Is that your hair goes from looking a little funky to really dirty to just like, really strong. I like to think that by not washing and/or shampooing for so many hours gives my hair a nice, healthy reprieve from the damage I do on a regular basis, right? Also, you can style your hair in just about any fashion (mohawk) and it'll just stay there.

So how've you been?

My tooth ordeal was far less traumatic than expected. I am suffering still from a mild case of "chipmunk cheek" but otherwise, it's not been too bad. I spent all of Thursday in a fog -- and, sadly, have no stories to tell of stupid things I said or did while under the anesthetic influence. Friday and Saturday were also spent in recovery mode, and I'm still taking it easy. But overall it was pretty okay.

And while I still hurt, I have also learned that I do not like Vicodin. It makes me groggy and nauseous and just kind of icky. I'm instead simply trying not to OD on ibuprofen. So far, so good.

IN OTHER NEWS, Ish and I are in a new, all-out cat war.

I would really like to be able to make use of our patio.

The wall between our patio and the neighbor's patio is probably about three-plus feet high. (That's not at all high to a cat.) As I mentioned earlier, we haven't really done anything to make our patio space alluring (yet). Whereas our neighbor, who is an architect, has a lavish spread. It's got dark woods and loungers and pots and flora and a whole, put-together look that makes you think the man living there must be gay and wealthy.

Our cats want very much to go outside and we want very much to let them. The problem is keeping them from jumping over the wall into the neighbor's patio. He has planters with some kind of mini-bushes in them that covers 3/4 of the wall, but the 4th quarter is empty because the planter doesn't fit.

This means that the first line of defense is flawed.

Last weekend, Ish and I went to Home Depot on our THIRD attempt to find some sort of wall-related covering that might deter the cats and not look heinous. We finally settled on a collection of wide trellises, that we would ground in some planter boxes.

Brilliant, attractive.

Until yesterday, when we actually planted the trellises in the boxes. And discovered that if the boxes are flush against the wall, the trellis cannot be. Because, right, they are inside the boxes.

Attractive. Not so brilliant.

Another excursion -- this time to Lowes. (Note: for those of you unfamiliar with San Francisco, there is no Home Depot nor Lowes nor any such store inside the city. Each of these trips requires getting in the car and driving on the highway to such beautiful and exotic locations as South San Francisco, Daly City, San Carlos, and even Redwood City. (Not to mention Palo Alto to Ikea for the patio furniture trip that resulted in us buying a grand total of two frozen yogurts.)) Where I bought a 6'x15' wall of reeds.

This brilliant idea was that this reed wall would go along the wall already in place, and would totally block the cats.

But how will the wall stay up? Ish asked me in the store.

I don't know, but it's only $23. We will figure the rest out later. Maybe the trellis boxes will hold the reed wall in place.

So this morning, we tried it out. Extended the reed-wall across the actual wall, pushed the trellis boxes up against it. Held it in place okay, although the trellis boxes are about 14" high, and the reed-wall is six FEET high. So the top kind of leaned forward.

Forward, but not so forward that the cats could get through it.

We thought.

We arrogantly opened the doors to the patio, let the cats out. Felt smug.

Until about ten minutes later, when Ish went out to check on them. He called to me from the patio with defeat in his voice.

Just come look at him.

I went outside. And while the reed-wall was still up, still leaning forward ever so slightly, Eddie was lounging languidly on a lovely chair in the neighbor's patio. His head was on the armrest, his eyes half-open, staring at us. He didn't budge when we called to him, except to blink, as though saying, You guys have got to chill. Have you tried hanging out over here? It's very relaxing.

There was nothing to be done about it, until eventually we checked up on him and couldn't see him at all.

Afraid he'd actually jumped into the neighbor's apartment (again!), Ish ran downstairs to see if the neighbor's car was there. It wasn't, so Ish jumped the wall, found Eddie curled up in a potted plant, snatched him and returned to our desolate side.

We need to find something tall to hold up the reed-wall, we determined. (Duh.) Maybe long, tall planters of some sort?

But we didn't want to drive down the Peninsula AGAIN. So we went to a few local stores.

What if we got a semi-tall planter, and like, planted a small TREE? I suggested, in something akin to desperation.

And Ish replied, in the middle of store number three: Why don't we just push the trees we ALREADY HAVE against it?

Yeah, the tenants before us left us three small potted trees, and it hadn't occurred to us to use those. Because we're not even remotely brilliant.

So that is what we've done and that seems to be working. For now, anyway.

But seriously? That was a lot of work. To keep the cats on our side of the patio, there are now approximately four-and-a-half lines of defense: a low wall with planters full of small bushes, a tall reed-wall, three trellises in planters, and two trees.

Photo taken with Ish's phone.
(Yes, my digital camera broke again. This is the third one I've broken.)
It could not capture the whole thing, but you can probably get the point.
That's Monster's butt you see between the two trellises.


Lastly, I wanted to give you an update on our patio furniture situation. I would normally think this is the most boringest kind of update, but once I mentioned we were looking for non-fugly, non-expensive patio furniture, I was inundated with suggestions from everyone.

You are all very savvy.

We took heed and started looking into all kinds of options.

And then we found it.

At Safeway. (That's the grocery store, for all you non-left-Coasters.)

Seriously. It's all wood (though not the best quality, it's still wood). It's got a giant round table that ostensibly seats six. And it comes with six armchairs that come with cushions. In the land of patio furniture, this is amazing.

Usually the tables come with non-arm-having chairs and the cushions are separate and cost like, $20 each. In the case of this Safeway furniture, the whole thing costs $559. Except when we went to purchase it -- finally -- we discovered it is half-off. So the seven-piece set came to a total of $298, and they are delivering it for no fee.

(If any of you need patio furniture are are looking for a steal, this is it. They have one set left at the SOMA Safeway.)

I am a little concerned that I have over-estimated the size of my patio and that the table will only fit if no one sits at it, but whatever.

Worst case scenario, we can just push it up against the wall. HAHAHAHAHA.

25 comments:

  1. you could use the patio furniture to help hold up the trellises in case the trees decide they don't work anymore.... (um, i have cats too, see.....and um furniture that doesn't cooperate...)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love how this post was on what are literally the most potentially boring topics ever: pet problems and patio furniture. And yet still totally engrossing/entertaining. Good job on the patio!

    ReplyDelete
  3. delurking to say i totally bought a round patio table, that i loved, spent 20 minutes fitting it into the car, drove another 20 minutes home to find out my deck is waaaay smaller than i thought. the table will fit just find as long as you dont mind standing - oh and standing on only one side since you cant squeeze to the back.

    sigh.

    returned it for two square ones.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I have neither a patio, cats or a trellisbut to me the trellis looks like a cat ladder to help them over the reed wall thingy.

    But what do I know.

    'nilla

    ReplyDelete
  5. I found that stapling bird netting (the kind that is supposed to protect fruit trees from birds--alas at Home Depot) to the porch kept my cats in...Don't know if using a fabric stapler is an option for you (like if the porch is framed in wood) or not but it was an excellent deterrent for my clever kitties and made for a nice 'screened in' effect...good luck anyway!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I'm glad your fine after your tooth ordeal!

    ReplyDelete
  7. And I thought I was the only person who bought patio furniture at grocery stores!

    ReplyDelete
  8. i can't even explain how often our seemingly innocent kitty "Lily" has escaped our beautiful little garden. she is currently grounded and doesn't understand.
    it's heartbreaking, but we ran out of ideas.
    meeeeeooooooooooouuuuuuuw?!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Oh cats! They are so demanding. But at least you got soft serve/fro yo from the deal, right?

    ReplyDelete
  10. The things we go through because we love our kitties. Darn them.

    What ever came of the front door pee obsession?

    On your patio, do you have a roof that extends between your place and the neighbors?

    I was thinking maybe chicken wire? attached to the ceiling and then to the fence below? You could plant ivy or something to grow up and cover it?

    Darn kitties.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Whoa... that broken camera churns out artsy pics. So mysterious.

    Just started reading, I'm digging so far (plant humor intentional)

    ReplyDelete
  12. I would think the trees and trellises would just make it easier for the cats to climb over the wall.

    Perhaps if you get some furniture out there and make it more relaxing the cats would just prefer to stay on your side?

    ReplyDelete
  13. I was thinking the same thing as mick. Maybe if you put a little cat lounge chair...

    ReplyDelete
  14. the thing about not showering is I break out, I'm talking zit city and it's not a pretty picture.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Hi, Kristy -

    Delurking to comment (finally!) on your kitty situation. I agree that the trellis looks like a kitty ladder. :)
    But I have a question - Don't you worry about the kitties jumping OFF the balcony? How many floors up are you?

    Love the loft!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Plant a cat nip plant on your side of the fence?!

    or how about this:
    http://www.discount-pet-superstore.com/cat_prducts/outdoor_cat_containment/outdoor_cat_containment_system.htm

    My husband takes our cats out to our patio, but it takes lots of supervision and a big strong command voice to get them to know they need to stay in the small area, and getting sent back into the house if they misbehave. They get it quickly, but of course, are forever looking for the opportunity to stray farther than they know they are allowed. Makes them scamper back to the house all the more quickly when they get called out on it! I, of course, have no command voice, and therefore am easily ignored every chance they get!

    Good luck with the cat issue. Excellent shopping on the grocery store patio furniture!

    ReplyDelete
  17. I'm personally a fan of buying Flea Market furniture, staining the wood all the same color - or painting it, depending on which is easier - and buying cushions from somewhere so I can pretend the mish-mash of furniture was supposed to look like that. I got 2 chaises, 4 random armed chairs, 2 end tables a can of stain, wood glue and cushions for each for less than $200 for the front porch. (a little late considering it's now post-shopping.)

    Also, I had a similar problem at an apartment/condo and here's what I did: I bought several cheaper bookshelves that would take up the space and a ton of small plants. With the shelving in front of the reed wall, you'll have privacy, a kitty protection and a place to put a whole bunch of kitschy goodness.

    ReplyDelete
  18. We have a lot of furniture bought at various grocery stores and people just oooh and ahh over it. I do, too since the price was good and it looks great.

    Don't know what to tell you about the patio/neighbor/cat problem, but I did love reading about it.

    ReplyDelete
  19. http://www.purrfectfence.com/

    It works and it's nearly invisible.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I decided to stop by via Amberstar!! She said this was a great blog and well I do agree with her.
    As for what you are doing..We have had cats are whole life and you are just giving him a way over the fence. That lattice work is like a ladder to your cat..believe me. They can get wherever they want to get and keeping them in your yard might not be an easy thing to do. Cats will go and do what they want remember they ar CATS...smile!!

    Sandy

    ReplyDelete
  21. I feel your pain. I've experienced your angst. But you have to realize there is nothing you can do, short of using concrete blocks and lots of cement, to keep your cats on your side.

    Take it from a cat lover. They are clever. My 28 pound cat went galloping through the house with the bathtub stopper-on-a-chain hanging from his cat lips, and I haven't found it yet.......and it's been 10 years.

    And, yes, I've cleaned the house several times in 10 years.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Kristy - I just discovered your blog and wanted to say I love it! You are a really funny writer. thanks for keepin' it real sista!

    www.illusivejoy.wordpress.com

    ReplyDelete
  23. must.have.new.post!!!!
    hope you're feeling okay and the silence isn't indicative of pain and suffering on your part?!

    ReplyDelete
  24. In my last house, I used some of that reed fencing to line the walls of my tiny bedroom. It looked awesome, and felt kind of like sleeping in a tiger-trap.

    ReplyDelete
  25. I have no advice on the patio... but I just wanted to say that isn't it funny that we think by not washing our hair for a few days.. that we've undone all the damage that we've put our hair through?! I do the same thing.. my husband thinks I'm crazy and will ask me... What's the deal with not washing your hair... LOL

    ReplyDelete