Column: Thoughts on pets

My dog died last week, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t other pets in my life.

I could try to come up with a witty intro to this sad topic, but I think that would do a disservice to the sadness I’m feeling. That, and I enjoy employing shock value to as many facets of my life as possible.

My dog died last week. I don’t think I need to say this, but it pretty much blows. Her name was Lucy. She came into my life at the age of 12 (I was 12, not her.). She was an infant. Couldn’t even speak yet. Wasn’t potty-trained. But boy, was she cute. Soon, she grew to be quite large. Whenever I wanted to buy her a cute sweater, searching in the doggie-sized section of the store was futile — I had to look for clothing made for baby beluga whales, which unfortunately are hard to come by.

But Lucy was a good dog. It comforts me knowing that she is no longer suffering from diabetes, which I can only assume is inevitable in most, if not all, dogs with necks so fat that collars slide right over their heads. Her pastimes included watching people eat, barking loudly when I came home much later in the night than I ever should have and stealing food off of the coffee table if you averted your attention to something other than sternly shouting “NO, THAT IS NOT YOUR SANDWICH” for more than 15 seconds.

Fortunately for me, the loss of Lucy does not mean a loss of all furry, four-legged, kibble-eating beings in my life. At my mother’s house reside four other creatures whose greatest joys in life involve licking their own butts.

I suppose this is where the infamous Chunky Steve comes in. Chunky Steve, a four-year-old female cat, is an enigma. By “enigma” I mean “asshole.” This cat is truly one of the meanest beings to crawl upon this earth. She loves only one person — my step-dad. She demonstrates this at least once a week by vomiting on or around my mother’s pillow. The 60-pound German shepherd is terrified of her. If I ever feel so inclined take over the world and act as an evil dictator, Chunk will most likely being my partner in crime — well actually, she would most likely become an evil dictator herself.

But, if she’s just a cat, how’d she get so evil?

Do I even need to answer that? The poor thing’s name is “Chunky Steve.” Don’t worry though, there’s a story behind the name that ultimately made this cat angry and pissed off for the rest of eternity.

One day during a summer in high school I received a call from my mother.

Mom: “Guess what? I adopted a kitten! Her name is [something irrelevant that I have long since forgotten].”

Asshole 16-year-old me: “Cute! I don’t care what you name it thought, I’m calling it ‘Chunk.’”

The next day, I went to my mother’s house to meet the little fur ball. She was much cuter then; she wasn’t seething with rage and purposefully vomiting where someone sleeps yet. I asked what her name was, and my mother replied with this:

“Well, your step-dad thought it would be really funny to give her a regular human name, like Jeff, or Steven…”

And thus Chunky Steve was born.

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