It is my solemn privilege to remind you today that you are the human equivalent of 2,000 chocolate bars.
I hope you already knew that.
We could all use a chocolate bar or ten these days, oui? We’ve gotten good at getting through this labyrinth of a year, you and me, but let’s be honest (we have that kind of relationship here, don’t we?). We need some flecks of gold in the pavement to spur us along. We need small treats, small trinkets, small reminders of all the beauty that yet remains amid loss and mystery and gaping grief.
We need chocolate bars, and chocolate bars look different for everyone.
I need to pray the Litany of Trust every morning.
I need to start wearing ladylike blouses at my desk after months of wrinkled lockdown T-shirts.
I need to listen to Yo-Yo Ma.
I need Maple Pecan coffee.
I need happy cats.
And you…you need happy cats, too. Elmo-happy. Will Ferrell-happy. Bill Murray-in-What-About-Bob?-happy (and I very very greatly need that very very best of all movies, too).* Happy as a smiling angel with 2,000 chocolate bars beneath her wings.
Fortunately for us, we have a quality contingent of rebelliously, relentlessly, revolutionarily happy cats at Tabby’s Place.
If I make this point 2,000 times over the lifetime of this blog, it will still always smack me right between the eyes: cats know how to make the best out of every situation, splendid or inscrutable. And how do they know? Because it’s all they know.
Self-pity is not an option. It’s simply not in their arsenal.
And grin by absurdity by purr, they do their dangdest to yank it out of ours.
But since rewiring our worried minds is above their pay grade, the cats will settle for making us smile in spite of ourselves, in spite of our fears, in spite of the very real and very scary things that we can’t stop from happening.
Adam will erupt in elation just to see your face. (He may erupt in other materials if you pick him up, but that’s what washing machines are for.)
Marjory will cuddle you so hard, you’ll forget you ever yearned for hugs.
Clarence will climb out of his fears to fete you with purrs.
Merriweather will do something ridiculous just because she can, and suddenly you can hear your own laugh again, and where there’s laughter, there’s hope.
And then there’s Orzo.
There are some cats whose very existence makes you smile involuntarily. There’s nothing you can do to stop it; you’d be a fool to fight it; and heaven and earth both want you to do it so much, they offer you an Orzo every great while.
Orzo is a living mystery of a smilemaker.
Much more on him soon.
But just for today, I hope he — and the rest of this asinine reflection — have made you smile. Smiling, after all, apparently makes you as happy as eating 2,000 chocolate bars.
And making you happy makes our cats as happy as eating 2,000 chocolate bars (filled with herring, hold the chocolate).
Today, your task is this. Be your beautiful, astonishing self and become the 2,000 chocolate bars someone else (feline, human or in your own mirror) needs.
Smile on, you rebel.
*Yes, this is actually the single greatest film that was ever created, yes, I am including Casablanca and It’s A Wonderful Life in my considerations, yes I am 100% serious, yes you need this treasure in your life, especially now. You’re welcome.