So I'm standing in the grocery store, looking for a spray bottle. You know the kind, just an empty spray bottle you can fill with water or whatever, allowing you to spray or squirt whatever needs spraying or squirting -- in my case, our cats.

They meow nonstop, you see, because they're of the opinion that they should be fed more. (They're fed plenty, believe me. In fact, it would be much easier to just give them the food they so stridently clamor for, just to save ourselves from listening to all the meowing. But no. I don't want them to become obese, so I avoid overfeeding them, because I want our cats to lead long, healthy lives. Notice I didn't say noisy.)

(Noisy is the life they're leading, though. I actually feel bad for them, sometimes, because the meowing is so insistent, so dire, that you'd think they were on the Verge of Death Itself. Which they aren't. They're totally fine. Aside from the meowing.)

So I'm looking for a spray bottle. We used to have one, a green plastic spray bottle with "Devil Kitty" written on the side, and it was awesome in both range and accuracy. Adjust that nozzle just right and you could douse a feline from twenty paces. Meowing: Stopped. Bathing: Started.

But of course we lost Devil Kitty in the move. And since then, the meowing has really gotten out of hand.

Publix doesn't seem to carry spray bottles, I'm noticing. And I'm definitely standing in the aisle where such bottles would be, so I'm starting to think of alternate solutions. A sippy cup is no good. Thermos, nope.

And then I see the other end of the aisle: Household Cleaners. Lots of those come in spray bottles. Maybe I can find something really nontoxic -- and cheap -- with which to silence the oppressive meowing. Let's see here. Grout and Tile Cleanser? No. Windex? Probably not. It's a tough consideration, choosing a weapon, especially when you consider the fact that whatever you're spraying will most likely be licked off later by your target. And remember what I said about long healthy lives.

Tilex won't do. Spot Shot would be disastrous. Bleach, forget it. Hey, what about "fabric refresher", though? It has just the right nozzle, seems fairly colorless, and only $2.19 a bottle. Plus the cats could smell like Autumn Orchards.

I kid. Of course I would rinse out the bottle before use. Still, though, you have to expect some trace amounts to remain, and what with the licking and all... I worry. What about Pledge? Wax can't hurt your tongue. I'd eat wax. Wait, no I wouldn't.

So it's on to the Hair Care aisle. Hmm, not many of these seem to be squirty at all. Nowadays it's all Molding Gel this and Sculpting Creme that. Man, I hope they still carry White Rain aerosol, or my potato cannon is totally obsolete.

Finally I find some Leave-In Conditioner with a trigger-fired squirter. But what about the nozzle? It has a "Spray" setting; does it have a "Squirt"? I'm trying to test it discreetly, but someone is standing a little further down the aisle, browsing the elastic bands. Out of the corner of my eye, I try to guess if I could spritz her from here.

$4.59 a bottle?! Okay, forget it. Back to the cleansers. Here, Windex. $2.49. Perfect. The nozzle is adjustable, and there's a Stream setting. I'll pour out the blue stuff, fill it with the clear stuff, and we're good to go. In fact, you know what? The generic window cleaner right next to it is 30 cents less, but this one says "No Ammonia," and the generic Publix one doesn't, so I'll splurge. Thirty extra cents to keep the ammonia traces off the cats. That's more than they've ever paid for me.


I don't know, though. What will I do with all the window cleaner? Clean all the windows and mirrors in the apartment? Run out into the parking lot and do all the cars and trucks?

That sounds like work. And I still don't know if it's cool to squirt your cats with an old Windex bottle. What if the neighbors saw me? Clear liquid or no, I still see myself getting calls from PETA. Then there's all the litmus testing and so forth, but just the accusation would be terrible.

And my defense that at least it wasn't Grout Cleanser probably wouldn't go very far.

Summary: Colin leaves the Publix empty-handed. The cats get another reprieve from the long, watery arm of the law. Colin drives home defeated, and upon ascending the stairwell and entering the apartment, is greeted by both cats.

They're meowing.


Anonymous said...

Don't they have Targets around there. You should look in the isle where they have the hair brushes and such. Target should have a spray bottle.


Anonymous said...

or you can find a beauty wholesale place they always have empty plastic spray bottles

jake said...

It's great to see you finally writing great blog entries again!

Excellent style, smooth form, and witty thoughts...

...loved it!

Lindsay said...

My cats do the same thing... you'd think they are starving to death... or worse, being tortured when in fact, they are perfectly fine, EXCEPT for the meowing! (I have 3 by the way...) If the spraybottle works, I will have to try!!!