This just in from Bathtub Safety Officer Rafferty:
At ease, civillians!
And when I say “at ease”, I mean you should assume a state of awareness in the moderate-bordering-on-high alert range. That, to me, is the most relaxed anyone should ever be. If things get tense and alarming, we will quickly move into and through the several stages of panic. I know this much – the heat of these summer months has dulled everyone’s senses and has made us inattentive. How many of you have taken more naps recently? I know I have. That’s a good strategy for dealing with extremes.
But often when a person takes a nap, a family pet will come and nap nearby. In some cases that animal even gets into the bed with you!
I find this alarming, especially in light of recent studies about certain cat parasites that appear to slightly increase the risk of suicide in Danish women. That’s right – your cat may carry a parasite that could lead you to make a foolish decision about ending your life!
Especially if you are a Danish Woman!
Who knew? Puff could be a hazard to your mental health!
Of course, some canine lovers will say it’s the other way around – that a person’s willingness to live with cats is a clear sign of a pre-existing tendency toward self-destruction. But I don’t want to get into that toxic argument. Here’s my point –
The parasite is transmitted through feces, so changing the cat litter is something that should be done every day, and by the most expendable member of the family. This is key. I realize it may be a difficult decision for any family – to choose the one member we could most easily do without – but it’s crucial that any exposure to toxoplasma gondii be limited limited.
In rats, the parasite creates lesions on the brain in the areas affecting behavior. Infected lab rats have been observed losing their fear of cats all together and even feeling an attraction to the odor of cat urine.
One theory about this clearly suicidal change in rat judgment is earth shaking!
Some researchers suppose that the parasite, which can sexually reproduce ONLY IN THE INTESTINES OF A CAT, changes the behavior of an infected animal in order to promote that animal getting eaten by kitty! If this is true it means nature is even more underhanded and nefarious than I imagined!
And it also means we must keep a careful watch on whoever in our family is responsible for feeding the cat. The repeated begging and pleading for Puff to “just take a little taste” of whatever smelly abomination has just been dumped into the bowl could quickly lead to a crazed person chopping up much more than mere fish heads at dinner time. Gruesome, I know, but it’s absolutely essential that we count their fingers before and after each meal. They won’t know why they’re doing it, so it’s up to us to remember that the fingertip is connected to the elbow, and the elbow is connected to the torso.
Yes, Puff looks hungry, but we must set limits. And although it will hurt family morale, we must make certain whoever cleans the boxes is closely watched and completely expendable. You might consider hiring someone else to do the job. But please, no Danish women!
Yours in Paranoia,
Who does the most dangerous jobs at your house?