Those who know me know that I’m always looking for ways to make an extra buck. I wouldn’t say that I’m driven, but the grinning visage of my eternally optimistic and hardworking father has taken up permanent residence in my mind’s eye.
“There’s always ways to make a buck,” my father likes to say. “You go where the need is, then all you have to do is convince them that you’re their man.”
Well, there are needs and there are needs, so when I found myself with an empty attic and an all-cat band with no where to practice…
They promise me that their legal matters have been cleared, that their battle with the Internal Revenue Service has been exaggerated, and that the smell that seems to cling to the piano player will dissipate with time.
I do hope renting to a band doesn’t turn out to be a mistake.
The band – Squeak Toy – has been practicing for weeks, after all, in the basement (or, as the drummer calls it "the abasement"). I’m tired of squeezing by them to do the laundry, and I’m sick to death of giving it away for free.
This is not high school, after all.
But where are my manners? You’ve met Squeak Toy, haven’t you? There’s Liza Bean Bitey (of the Minneapolis Biteys) on electric violin; Stumpy “Lucky” Strykes on drums; Ignatz D. Katz on upright bass; and on piano a large long-hair with yellow eyes introduced to me, less than cryptically, I thought, as “Hairball” .
I met them with the keys, at their request, at the back steps on August 1st, just moments after the clock struck midnight.
I suspect they may have been drunk at the time.
Why else would Lucky have said, “You look very – hic! – lovely this evening, Miz Pearl”?
Since then, of course, there have been small issues. The continual disappearance of ice from my freezer suggests that copies of my personal keys have been made. The lavender-on-lavender striped curtain in the back hall has been replaced with a pattern that can only be described as “kitty pin-up”.
The apres-bar last night included what sounded to be both bagpipes and a bow drawn across a saw.
Of course, I woke them early this morning with the dulcet marching tones of John Phillips Sousa and the smell of frying bacon.
Cats hate marching bands.
“Thtill,” Dolly Gee Squeakers (formerly of the Humane Society Squeakers) said, sipping her coffee and blowing cigarette smoke out the window, “it’th rather nithe having Bohemianth in the attic. Lendth the plathe an air of thophithticathun, don’t you think?”
Sophistication and rent money!
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