Everyone has a secret talent, and I am no exception. My secret talent is reacting to any given situation in the most inappropriate way imaginable. Attending a funeral? At some point I will find something hysterically funny and make a borderline tasteless joke in front of one of the bereaved family members.
Someone tripped and tumbled down some stairs? That. Was. Hilarious! It may or may not later occur to me to go over and make sure they are okay.
Someone struggling to multitask? Walking in front of me with 2 shoulder bags, a pile of books, a cup of coffee with no lid, a dog on a leash, and a donut in their mouth? I sip my soda (because let’s be honest, I’m probably drinking sodas again) and watch them, thinking, “Wow, how are they gonna get out of THAT one?” It’s not until they look at me with flushed cheeks, mouthing around the donut, “UH, can you help me, please?!” that I take the coffee and the books and help them.
You’re pregnant? With twins? And you weren’t even trying? Shut up, don’t talk to me.
Recently I have stopped myself before saying something really inappropriate to a few friends of mine. Sometimes people ask me for advice about their pets or about pets of people they know. I am always happy to help anytime I’m able because there are times when I really miss veterinary medicine. I like to still keep my finger on the pulse of animal health.
The inappropriateness comes in when someone asks me what is wrong with their pet, I make my best diagnosis, then the diagnosis is later confirmed by their veterinarian. A few years ago a guy I dated for a moment in time called me after a long stretch of not speaking to me (we don’t need to go into why right now) and said he was worried about his cat. The cat was urinating outside of the litterbox and hiding under the bed. I asked if the cat was drinking more water than usual. Yes. Is he eating a lot but losing weight? Why yes he is. Does he seem a lot more tired than normal? Yeah, totally.
He probably has diabetes, take him to a vet tomorrow. No excuses
The guy called me the next day to let me know that the vet reported the cat’s glucose was 450, and he was diagnosed with diabetes. I stopped myself just short of yelling, “DAMN I’m good! Over the phone too, high five!” I mean I was a millisecond away from saying that. I wasn’t happy that the cat had diabetes, I was happy that I was right (this never changes) and I was happy that I helped get straight to the root of the problem. I think I forced something out like, “Oh, I’m sorry, at least with treatment he will feel better soon!”
Earlier this week another friend wanted me to come over and look at her cat’s leg because it’s been swollen for 4 days and he’s holding it up when he walks. My first thought, that I kept to myself, was, “Jesus, and you’re just telling me about this now?!” I went over and looked at the cat, whose handsome face was talkative and purring. That’s a good sign. Then I saw his leg, felt a hard spot near the elbow and found the rest of the leg warm and swollen. No pain on manipulation, so I thought a fracture was unlikely.
It looks like he may have gotten bitten by a snake or a bee or something else that he pissed off, and it’s probably infected. He needs x-rays and antibiotics and pain medicine.
I saw my friend today and asked how the kitty was. She said, “They said he was probably bitten by something and it was infected. They did x-rays, and there was no break. They lanced the hard spot near his elbow and drained a bunch of pus then gave him an antibiotic shot and a pain shot.
I was right again! Infected leg, HIGH FIVE!
I did not say that out loud, because I’m not happy that the poor cat’s leg is infected, but I was probably smiling a little too much when she told me about it. I was also jealous of the techs who got to lance and drain the wound. The secret is out – veterinary staff love lancing and draining things. The more squeezing involved, the better. I did say that out loud, and now my friend won’t look me in the eye. I wonder what she thought when I started showing her Google images of cuterebra and I was really excited about it.
People have asked me before why I censor myself so much when I talk. Why do I spend so much energy trying not to say what I really think? I mean it’s a fair question, but I think it’s safe to say that if I didn’t censor myself I wouldn’t have any friends. I’m the one in the room that says out loud what everyone else is thinking. Then I wonder why there’s suddenly a huge backlash.
I’m always happy to answer your pet questions. I’ll try not to let you know how excited I am when I point you in the right direction.