At the beginning of October we got new windows installed in our house. This is proof that my parents could not rock more if their hands were actually made of 1980s Metallica.
Artist's depiction of my mom. Deal with it.
But I digress.
Windows! When you get them installed you have to move furniture around. This is not that bad a deal since furniture can be pushed.
Cats, however, cannot be pushed.
We will not be moved.
We have three of them: Diego de la Sofa (El Gato del Cielo; orange tabby pictured above), The Minion Underfoot (Bad Cat the Bad; tuxedo cat pictured above), and Daisy Doomsayer (coming to a haunted house near you; not pictured because she will shank us if we try). Two of them are dumb and got tossed in the basement without much trouble.
Diego...not so much.
We tried various methods of herding him into the basement. Catching him was apparently out of the question that day. Eventually we found ourselves blocking off his primary escapes and leaving only the basement as a major option. Eventually he went down, but not before dealing me a grievous blow.
See, we had all the chairs up against a wall, which meant that there were places he could go that we couldn't. My wife blocked off one side of this area and I stood at the other side with a stick that I was using to make noise to drive him out. Out he came. I moved to one side to try to catch him, but then he pulled a move on me like I was a Redskins linebacker and he was a Buffalo Bill.
Unavailable for photo or game: Redskins' defense.
This ended with him going right past me and me feeling something like an electric shock across my back. At first it just hurt bad. I spent much of that day up and down in the recliner, but, hey, WINDOWS!
The next day was a work day, which involves 109 miles of driving. That felt fantastic. It also involves a lot of standing up and sitting down because it's hard to write on a whiteboard while you're seated. I had to call my evening class after about an hour, which is not the greatest feeling in the world for a first-year adjunct.
The pain had gotten worse from the first day to the second. The second night, I tossed and turned like a rotisserie chicken in bed and was eventually exiled to the guest room.
But I was delicious and went well with corn bread.
If you're ever in a position to stay at our house, believe me when I assure you that the guest room bed is extremely comfortable. I actually managed to sleep off and on for about six hours in it before finally forcing myself to go downstairs.
Throughout the third day I tried alternating cold therapy (via ice packs) and heat therapy (via hot baths...twice). For the most part, the best I could do was distract myself from the pain.
It will please my Simple Lemming friend to know that during the worst times in the first three days, the only way I could alleviate the pain was to plant my face on the couch/bed with my butt straight up in the air.
My wife somehow managed not to laugh.
That night I returned to my exile in the guest room and continued to work on getting a nice juicy brown on all sides. I had most recently tried heat therapy on my back, so I decided around 2 a.m. to try ice therapy downstairs. This involved hobbling down the stairs, rounding the still offset furniture, and going to the kitchen.
As I approached the freezer, I had a sudden spike in back pain. Grabbing the ice pack, I hobbled rapidly to the couch and assumed the position.
The pain got worse.
I applied the ice pack.
The pain got even worse.
At that point, the pain was the worst pain I've ever felt in my life and the only position that had previously alleviated the pain in any way was no longer working.
So, I caterwauled (pronounced cay-ter-wauled if you're cool).