I find it utterly amazing that you can know someone for decades, then suddenly learn something totally new about them.
For example, yesterday morning, Tripe and I were sitting on the couch discussing mortality, carcinogens, and other breezy topics with the TV on in the background. The conversation hit a lul and we both focused on the screen briefly. One of those creepy Airwick commercials was on. You know, the ones with the bizarro animated bugs that complain about how stinky their kids and husbands are. Do ants even have a sense of smell? (Apparently so.) Are they really consumed with the desire to be surrounded by vanilla?
“This is another example,” I said while thrusting my hand towards the TV, scaring the bejeezus out of Lucy in the process. “What the hell kind of chemicals are in that thing to simulate vanilla? What are the carrier substances that get that gunk into the air? What are the by products of making that little plastic dispenser? If your house is stinky, maybe you should clean it. If you really like vanilla that much, bake something…or dab some vanilla extract on your skin…or anything else! It doesn’t have to come in a convenient, self-releasing, completely fake spray thingy!”
Axel (oops I mean Tripe!) nodded in agreement as he tried to extricate himself from the cloud of hair Lucy had left in her panicked wake. After several frantic sneezes he added,” It’s like garbage bags…do they really need to be lemon scented? Maybe you should take out the garbage if it’s stinking up your house.”
Mercifully the ant went away and the next ad came on screen. Tripe scooted to the edge of the couch, watched a few moments, then turned to me with fire in his eyes. “THIS stuff REALLY gets me angry,” he seethed as he stabbed the air repeatedly.
I looked at the screen and watched a deliciously fluffy white cat prance across a marble floor to a crystal dish heaped with tuna. Blinking, I turned back to him, confused. “Fancy Feast?” I asked.
“Yes!” he spoke louder and his voice reached a pitch higher than I’d heard him reach before. “Look at that stuff! It’s got parsley on it for God’s sake!”
The fluffy cat dove, with much relish, into a bowl of surprisingly appetizing cat food. I found myself craving a tuna melt. The logo and slogan rolled across the screen as the ad ended.
He slumped and slid backward, relaxing slightly and resting his back against the cushions again. “What does THAT say about society?” he muttered. “Crystal dishes. Hmph.”
I had no idea he was such a staunch detractor of the Fancy Feast platform. Clearly I shan’t serve it for dinner again.
Later that afternoon, we met Thom in a bar for lunch. I was saying something incredibly witty and profound (maybe) when Thom looked over my head, distracted by whatever was on the TV. His lip curled up in distaste, then morphed into a full on grimace of disgust. I turned around to see the same damn deliciously fluffy white cat prancing across a marble floor. I spun back around.
“Not you too?” I asked in shock.
“There’s peas in that cat food,” he responded shaking his head. “That just ain’t right.”