Friday, February 12, 2010
every year, nine days after my friend samb's birthday, i draw him a birthday card and tell the story of how we became friends.
i first met samb harkenharken in 1997. i was in a bit of a bad-boy streak during that time in my life. i ran with a street gang called "los gatos locos." we were a not-for-profit gang that worked to find homes for mentally deranged alley cats. most people don't know this, but 1 out of 4 felines suffers from some form of mental illness. and man, we saw them all in '97: epilepsy, schizophrenia, feline dementia, cat scratch fever, poison tail, cats who eat dog food (CWEDF) cats unable to purr (CUP), kitties with inverted laser teats (KWILT), etc etc etc.
anyway, samb came to us in a real huff. he was so upset he could hardly get his words out. he told us, "it's my cat, ya see," and then he went back to huffing and puffing, trying to catch his breath. "go on," i said, "what's the problem with your cat?" samb took a drink of water, spilling most of it down his shirt. he gulped loudly and said "my cat, she's CRAZY! you gotta help me!" i refilled his glass of water and said, "well, that's what we're here for. we take crazy cats and we fix 'em up. now what's the problem?" he panted some more and said, "you're never gonna believe it" samb took a big bite out of a donut that was on my desk. i smacked it out of his mouth. "get on with it! what's the story with your kitty cat, already?"
eventually, he spilled the beans. "my cat, when she's angry, she spits bees out of her mouth. hundreds of 'em. big ones too! yellow jackets!"
naturally, we figured samb was crazy but we had to investigate any case we got. we went to samb's house and sure enough, that damned cat covered us with yellow jackets. we got stung up so bad we had to spend a week in the bee unit at the hospital. samb and i shared a room. we didn't get along at first, but the rec room at the hospital had a ping-pong table. i don't care who you are, no two people can stay enemies after a few friendly games of ping-pong.
anyway, long story short, samb saved my life. and now he has birthdays every year and i do this thing. happy birthday!