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Friday, February 09, 2018

As Seen On TV...Almost

Scene opens on Living Room. Dinner is over; it is approximately 7 PM. Rick is in his chair. Nance enters from the bedroom where she has just changed into her pajamas and heads past him to the small trunk where she keeps blankets. She draws out a patchwork quilt backed with flannel and heads to the couch. Out of nowhere, both cats trot over to her, waiting.

Nance: Holy crap, do you see this? It's ridiculous. (curls up on couch, spreads out comforter, and both cats jump up onto it, with enormous orange cat claiming her lap)

Rick: (chuckling) Well, that's what you wanted. You wanted a cat to keep you company and be on your lap.

Nance: I know, but this is all the time. Every single time I sit down. (orange cat begins snoring) And now, I can't move. I simply cannot move.

Rick: Nance, it's a cat. You're bigger than he is. Maybe not by much, but you are. If you need to move, just move. You know he'll come right back.

Nance: That's not nice. Piper knows he's fat. But I hate to bother him when he's not feeling well. He's been so stuffy lately.

Rick: I know. I can hear him over the TV.

Nance: (getting fussy)  Both cats rushed me, and now I can't move. I want this light off, and I can't reach it.  (sighs, then brightly)  You know what I need? I need The Clapper.

Rick: You what? The Clapper?

Nance: Yeah. That thing for old people. Then I could just clap this light off. It would be great!

(Rick is looking at her with increasing suspicion and disbelief. He is not sure if she is serious or, at this point, even sane.)

Nance: (continuing excitedly) What would even be better is if The Clapper could multitask. Like, right now, I can't reach the light. But I also can't reach my water, my phone, or even my iPad. What if The Clapper could get those things for me? Now that is something I really need.

Rick: (in the spirit now) It could clean the shitboxes for you, too!

Nance: I don't really mind that job. Litter has come such a long way that it's almost nothing to do it. But if The Clapper could put my jammies on me and wash my face every night while I just sit here on my couch under my blanket, I'd take it!

Rick: How about if it just finds your Chapstick?

Nance: (big sigh) Yeah. For sure...that, too.

End scene.

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24 comments:

  1. I'm disappointed. I thought Rick might get up and turn the light off near the end of the discussion. LOL I guess that's how we know you were writing non-fiction.

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    1. Jean--Well, he was comfy too...

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  2. I would LOVE the clapper! But what's crazy is I got a "smart plug" for Christmas - I can plug the lamp into it & use Alexa to control the lamp. And it's still in the box because it's easier to just get up & turn on the lamp than it would be to read the instructions. However, I don't have cats!

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    1. The Bug--You are something.

      I don't have Alexa or any assistant like that. I don't feel like I want that sort of Internet Intervention in my life right now. And you bring up a good point: it's more important--especially in winter in NEO--that I get up and go do things myself. IF I'M NOT BEING WEIGHED DOWN BY ENORMOUS CATS.

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  3. I have several smart plugs and an Alexa device, and I use them every day. The best part is getting into bed, reading a book, and when I'm ready to sleep, saying, "Alexa, turn off the light." If I wake up and it's too cold in the morning, I just say, "Alexa, turn on the heat," and my space heater turns on. Though that happens less because the smart plugs also have timers, so I can have it turn on a bit before I wake up every morning.

    This was even more important when I was recovering from my knee injury: it would have been dangerous to turn the light off and then try to hobble over to my bed on crutches in the dark. I also had a machine that pumped cold water through a pad on my knee, and the machine didn't have an on/off switch, but that didn't matter because I could have Alexa turn it on and off.

    I had actually thought about getting a Clapper. I almost ordered one a few times, but I just thought it would feel ridiculous to clap my hands before bed. Somehow talking to a machine sounds less ridiculous, which is a sign of the times, I guess.

    Maybe someday we'll have robotic cats that cuddle, turn off the lights, and find your lost Chapstick.

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    1. Wow, that's pretty cool technology! I didn't even know they had smart plugs and now I want one.

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    2. Mikey--You are officially a Jetson. (Do you even know what that IS?)

      I'm afraid of becoming too terribly lazy if I get anything else Internetted. As it is, I have started to rely less and less on The Google so as to challenge my poor, sad, B12-assisted memory, sometimes to the extent that I will put my brain on Sort in order to try and think of Something. Last night, I finally remembered the name of a basketball player I had been puzzling over for two days.

      Purely recreational. But necessary, I think.

      Anyway.

      The benefit of robotic cats would have to be NO SHEDDING. I'm for it.

      Jared is smitten with his Google assistant. I think he will get another one for his birthday.

      I have recently gotten several more lip balms as a gift from a Dearest Reader. But you might know something about that. XXOO

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    3. Nance--Yes, I absolutely know who the Jetsons are. It wasn't my favorite growing up, but I remember the opening theme and I'm sure I've have seen many episodes. Wasn't their robot named Rosie? I could ask Alexa, but I'm going to forego the technology on that one ;-)

      As I'm allergic to cats, I would be all for robotic cats for the lack of shedding. But there was an episode of Black Mirror with these horrifying electric dogs, so I'm not sure.

      Enjoy the balm! It might not solve the problem you blogged about, but it can't hurt to have a couple of extra emergency sticks lying around. :-)

      Jean--If you're interested in smart plugs, I'd recommend the ones made by TP-Link. They also have smart bulbs that you can put in ceiling fixtures and work directly with Alexa, as opposed to the Philips Hue bulbs that need an extra hub (which gets pricey).

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  4. When the Clapper first came out my mother got us one for Christmas as a joke. It was a hoot to have around, but we learned that one loud human sneeze could turn it on or off-- and that a cranky old cat howling beside it could do the same thing. Clappers have probably come a long way since we had ours, but even back then ours was useful about 90% of the time. Get one, I say. Live the life.

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    1. Ally Bean--Oh, THAT sounds entertaining. Rick sneezes almost every time he finishes eating. I can just see our lights going on and off as he rips a few.

      But...would it refill my ice water? Find the remote? Have they come that far yet? ;-)

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  5. You are both hysterical.

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    1. Mereknits--More often than you know.

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  6. Nothing newfangled in our house (or even oldfangled, like the clapper.) Except for the motion-sensing light that turns on the minute you walk into the bathroom. Only the bathroom. Mr. O. installed it years ago. I think he just wanted to have fun installing it to see if it would really work. And it does. It's great when I get up in the middle of the night and need to go to the loo (which I do nearly every night) because… the bathroom in our weird condo has 2 doors, one leading to the kitchen (what idiot designed *that*?) and another one right next to our bedroom. So having the sensor light go on is a godsend, because otherwise, I have to stumble quite a bit in the dark to get to the light switch which is near the door to the kitchen. The downside is that it turns off after about a minute, so I if need to be in there showering or cleaning or I need more time for 'necessities' (and would like to see where the damn loo roll is when I finish), I have to wave my arms around or use the manual method with the light switch.

    I am duly impressed with Mikey’s mastery of all this, and am also interested in ‘smart plugs’, which I did not know existed. Except for my iron going on auto-off, but that is the iron, not the plug. And thank God it does, because I would have burned down this house many times over if not.

    My brother has Alexa. I’m impressed with what she does, but not sold on getting it. Unless I could use it to say, “Alexa, I forgot I was out of onions and I need some for what I am making for dinner. Could you make them magically appear in my kitchen in the next 60 seconds?” And honestly, would she respond to “Tell the cats to get off my lap.” ?

    Regarding one of your comments above: “I have started to rely less and less on The Google so as to challenge my poor, sad, B12-assisted memory…” you might enjoy this rant by Mayim Bialik on The Google Effect in her YouTube post: “Your Brain on Cell Phones.” https://tinyurl.com/ybg6open
    Interesting, as well, that she actually confesses her addition to her cell phone.

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    1. Ortizzle--Even the cats don't respond when I say "Get off my lap."

      I love Mayim Bialik and the fact that she really IS a scientist. I'm not addicted to my phone as much as I would be worried about where I left it if I found I didn't have it, or perhaps concerned about not being reachable in the event that St Patsy needed me. Or Rick. Sigh. I worry too much during the winters, I know.

      Anyway, yes, Mikey is quite mathy and fearless with all things new and logicky, especially when they are going to make his life easy and efficient. He is the embodiment of Occam's Razor.

      Here at the Dept., having the bathroom light on a motion sensor would be horrid since I must have absolute pitch black darkness in which to sleep, and the cats wander about often from room to room at night. Piper often goes into the bathroom to lick droplets off the shower liner, scratch his chin on the lowest drawer pull, or camp out on the rug for the night. In the summer, one or both might even lie in the tub.

      I feel like you do about the various home assistants. Unless they can vacuum, fetch things immediately, or bring up my laundry from the dryer, what good are they, truly?

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  7. LOL! I had not thought of "The Clapper" in years. When they first came out, friends of ours were so *proud* to show off turning on or off lights with the clap of a hand. Ever since then I have thought they are the weirdest folks ever!

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    1. Vera--Weird? They were LIGHT YEARS ahead of the times! LOL.

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  8. Funny. The YD's cat insists on lying on my knitting and objects to my using the iPad. How about a personal assistant who would arrange everything for us before we collapsed into the couch, includung bringing the blanket and tying helium balloons to the cat. I want a real one however, so that I can talk to her while JG hangs out with the TV.

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    1. Mary--Ditto with Piper and Marlowe each time I knit/use an electronic device. They want all of my lap and all of my attention. So needy.

      One of the things I liked a great deal about my teaching career was The Student Aide. I always had a staff. They freed me up considerably to do My First Love, Teaching. They answered the door, graded true/false and other easy robot work, wrote hall passes, ran errands--in short, they were my Work Personal Assistants. How I would love a team of them now for those times described above.

      What a fussbudget I am!

      As far as talking rather than watching TV, perhaps you need to make your preferences known a bit more strenuously?

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  9. Pets are wild, aren't they? I mean, couldn't they just give you a minute to get situated? That's all it would take.

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    1. j@jj.com--I know! It's not like they need me in order to lie there and sleep. They do it anyplace, and most of the day.

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  10. Nance...we used a WAHL electric clipper on our cat Tanks, coat. We did not need to use the guard things. I think we bought it years ago for our aged cat Rozzy when she wasn't grooming herself well. We have friends who send their cat to be shaved and it costs fifty bucks. I think we have already recouped the price of the clipper. Tank grumbled a lot and hissed once, but overall it went smoothly!

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    1. kathyb--A People clipper? Hmmm. Thank you.

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  11. Oh and the colder it is here, the more the cats want to sit on /with me. Summers a whole different story.
    Your post made me laugh!

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    1. kathy b--Glad you were able to laugh. That is golden.

      I am trying valiantly to even *remember* summer. SIGH. LOL.

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Oh, thank you for joining the fray!

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